By 90Min
November 17, 2017

Watford play West Ham at home this Sunday afternoon, with the latter in the regulation zone in the Premier League. 

After a great start to the season, Watford have been brought back down to earth with three defeats in their last three games in the league, including their painful recent defeat to Everton where they through away a 2-0 lead to lose 3-2. 

David Moyes will take charge of West Ham for the first time this Sunday after signing on as manager for the rest of the season last week. His new team have yet to win an away match in the league so far, which means it could be another tough night for the West Ham hopeful. 

Here's everything you need to know ahead of the clash at Vicarage Road: 

Classic Encounter:


This is a fixture that has largely been dominated by West Ham since they first played each other back in 1898. Since then West Ham have won 41 times and drawn 13, losing only 19 times to Watford. 

However, more recent times have favoured the Hornets, winning five of their last nine games against the Hammers, including a memorable 4-2 away victory at the beginning of last season. 

Michail Antonio gave West Ham the perfect start with two goals in the opening 33 minutes to give the Hammers a 2-0 advantage. But Watford got back into that match through a deflected effort from Odion Ighalo four minutes before half time. 

Then Troy Deeney levelled it in first half extra-time when a mix up between West Ham's goalkeeper Adrian and defender James Collins gifted Deeney the ball, who then delightfully chipped the ball over them both, into the top right-hand corner. 

Watford then took the lead on the 53rd minute through Etienne Capoue, who chested the ball down inside the box before half-volleying the ball past Adrian. Jose Holebas then capped off the stunning comeback for Watford 10 minutes later when he drove the ball, just outside box, past West Ham's goalkeeper to finish the scoring at 4-2 to Watford.  

Key Battles

Andy Carroll vs Christian Kabasele and Miguel Britos 

Dan Mullan/GettyImages

West Ham have only scored 11 goals in 11 games this season in the league. Their inability to score is a problem and it might be even worse now with the hamstring injury Javier Hernandez suffered while on international duty, given that he has scored four of their 11 goals.    

His absence could give Andy Carroll a chance to start his first Premier League game since October 14th against Burnley. He has yet to score this season for the Hammers, but he may get the chance to this Sunday against a Watford defence beginning to leak goals in recent games. They have conceded eight goals in their last three games, losing all three. 

Christian Kabasele and Miguel Britos need to have a solid game compared to their last three if Watford are going to get a positive result, so the battle between them and Carroll could be an important one, if they all play.  

Andre Gray vs James Collins and Winston Reid 

Alex Livesey/GettyImages

The battle between Watford forward Andre Gray and West Ham central defensive pair James Collins and Winston Reid will be just as crucial as on the other side of the pitch.

Watford are in a similar position to the one West Ham might be in as the Hornets' first choice striker Troy Deeney will be unavailable through suspension. This means that Gray will likely be continuing to lead the line for Watford against West Ham.  

With only one goal in the league so far this season, they will need him to find his scoring boots against a West Ham defence that has been conceding goals all season, 23 so far this campaign. 

West Ham will hope that defender Collins has recovered enough to start against Watford. If he does play, they will need him and Winston Reid to have a great game to pick up a result. The strikers and central defences of both teams could decide the game.

Team News

Bryn Lennon/GettyImages

For Watford, Troy Deeney remains out through suspension after the three-match ban he received in October. Defender Christian Kabasele is a doubt for the game, as is Heurelho Gomes, Roberto Pereyra, Younes Kaboul and Sebastian Prodl.

New West Ham boss David Moyes will potentially have to deal without striker Javier Hernandez, as he is a major injury doubt going into the Watford clash after picking up a hamstring injury on international duty.

James Collins and Michail Antonio could both return for the Hammers but Jose Fonte and Sam Byram are already ruled out.

Potential Watford Starting Lineup: Gomes; Feminia, Kabasele, Britos, Holebas; Hughes, Doucoure, Cleverly; Carrillo, Richarlison, Gray.

Potential West Ham Starting Lineup: Hart; Zabaleta, Collins, Reid, Masuaku; Obiang, Noble; Arnautovic, Lanzini, Ayew; Carroll.  



Before their last three Premier League games, everyone would have probably expected this to be a routine home victory for Watford. However, three defeats on the bounce leave a lot of questions to be answered from Marco Silva's men.

West Ham players may also receive a boost with David Moyes taking charge, as bringing in someone new sometimes does have that effect. But the Hammers aren't in the best of form either heading into the game against Watford, without a victory in their last four games in the league.

This match is difficult to call with both sides current form, so this one perhaps has a draw written all over it. 

Prediction: Watford 2-2 West Ham

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