Hello and welcome to Sports Mole
's live coverage of the match in the Premier League between Watford
and West Ham United
. All of the big hitters have already played this weekend, but with Marco Silva
and David Moyes
both having something to prove, this should be a cracking match at Vicarage Road. Let's take a look at the two teams...
Gomes; Mariappa, Kabasele, Britos; Femenia, Cleverley, Doucoure, Zeegelaar; Hughes, Richarlison
WATFORD SUBSTITUTES: Karnezis, Prodl, Holebas, Capoue, Pereyra, Carrillo, Okaka
WEST HAM UNITED XI:
Hart; Zabaleta, Reid, Ogbonna, Cresswell; Noble, Kouyate, Obiang; Arnautovic, Lanzini, Carroll
WEST HAM UNITED SUBSTITUTES: Adrian, Masuaku, Rice, Fernandes, Quina, Sakho, Martinez
Let's start off with Watford with Silva opting to make two changes to his starting lineup. Marvin Zeegelaar finally gets the chance to make his debut since joining from Sporting Lisbon during the summer, while Adrian Mariappa also comes into the team. Jose Holebas and Andre Carrillo are the players to make way.
Goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes
has kept his place in the side despite sustaining a head injury against Everton before the international break. The Brazilian also captains the side. Christian Kabasele and Miguel Britos take their place alongside Mariappa in defence, with Kiko Femenia and Zeegelaar operating at wing-back.
In midfield, Will Hughes
gets just his second start in the Premier League having been made to wait for his chance since signing from Derby County during the summer. The young Englishman will feature alongside Tom Cleverley and Abdoulaye Doucoure, with Richarlison and Andre Gray
being used in attack.
On the bench, Sebastian Prodl and Roberto Pereyra are available after injuries, while Carrillo and Stefano Okaka providing the attacking options for Silva. When factoring in Holebas and Etienne Capoue, it makes for a strong list of alternatives.
As for West Ham, Moyes has to make do without Javier Hernandez this afternoon after the Mexican picked up an injury while on international duty with Mexico. It means that Andy Carroll
gets an immediate chance to impress his new boss after failing to score in 388 minutes of Premier League football this season.
Manuel Lanzini and Marko Arnautovic have been selected to support Carroll. There will be a lot of focus on Arnautovic with the former Stoke City winger having been tipped to be one of the players potentially leaving the London Stadium in January. He is yet to make any sort of an impact in seven top-flight outings this season.
Moyes has decided to use three defensive-minded central-midfield players this afternoon with Pedro Obiang, Cheikhou Kouyate and Mark Noble
all set to line up against Watford's central three. It should make for an interesting dynamic with both teams seemingly using different formations.
Pablo Zabaleta comes straight back into the team after missing the 4-1 defeat to Liverpool through suspension. As expected, Winston Reid, Angelo Ogbonna and Aaron Cresswell make up the rest of the back four, with Joe Hart keeping his place in goal.
Proof that the West Ham squad is a little stretched comes with the inclusion of Toni Martinez on the bench. The 20-year-old striker has impressed in the reserves but he is yet to make his first-team debut for the Hammers. Diafra Sakho is likely to be used ahead of the youngster, however, with five goals being netted for club and country this season.
Let's start our buildup by taking a look at Watford's form this season because at one stage, they were emerging as the surprise package of the season. However, three successive defeats against Chelsea, Stoke City and Everton have started to change the mood at Vicarage Road.
Their start to the season was somewhat deceiving because the Hornets have been poor at home over the last seven months. Their only win came against Arsenal - in the last minute - with two draws and four defeats coming during the same period. That's going to need to improve at some stage.
Astonishingly, Watford have conceded over half of their goals from set pieces. Six goals have come from corners, with a further five coming from free kicks and penalties. Carroll will only be encouraged by those stats...
It's also been seven matches since Watford kept a clean sheet. That came away at Southampton on the second weekend in September. Watford had started the campaign with three successive clean sheets after the 3-3 draw with Liverpool on the opening day.
Richarlison has hit the headlines since arriving at Vicarage Road, and bigger clubs are already interested in his signature
. He already has four goals to his name but that is partly down to 39 shots being attempted. Only Harry Kane has had more.
We cannot go through this buildup without mentioning that Marco Silva
has been heavily linked with Everton
, who were allegedly required to pay a large compensation fee in order to push through a switch. However, is the Portuguese really worth all that money? In 34 games in English football, he has won just 12 games, losing 16.
Moyes takes charge for the first time looking to improve West Ham's poor away record, which currently stands at one win and six draws from 13 games. That said, the Hammers are unbeaten on their last three trips in the Premier League and with Watford's home record so poor, the visitors are going to fancy their chances this afternoon.
Nevertheless, West Ham still possess the third-worst defensive record in the division. Crystal Palace and Everton have now conceded one more goal than the Hammers after their 2-2 draw yesterday.
Talking of "worst" records, this is West Ham's second poorest start in the Premier League, with nine points being registered from 11 matches. Their worst effort of seven points from the same amount of games saw the East Londoners relegated in 2011.
We have to keep going with the negativity. Moyes heads into this match having won just 20 of his last 85 games, combining his spells with Real Sociedad and Sunderland. As many as 43 defeats came from the same period...
However, let's pay some respect to the opinion-dividing Scot, who is taking charge of his 500th Premier League match this afternoon. Only Sir Alex Ferguson, Arsene Wenger and Harry Redknapp have taken control of more games.
An interesting note ahead of this game is that Moyes's last win at Sunderland came against a Hull City side managed by Marco Silva. The Black Cats ran out 2-0 winners at the KCOM Stadium, and we are pretty sure that Moyes would take that today! The stats also suggest that Silva is making less of an impact at clubs after making a strong start. He is going to have to do something to disprove the evidence which calls his longevity into question.
PREDICTION! Difficult one to call, this. West Ham need to make huge improvements from their 3-1 capitulation against Liverpool and this is almost the perfect game to have next given Watford's poor form. However, Watford also need a response and that is why we are going to go for a 1-1 draw.
HEAD TO HEAD! Today's game represents the 74th meeting between the two sides, with West Ham winning 41 times in comparison to just the 19 victories for Watford.
However, West Ham have won just one of the last five meetings, with Watford picking up four points from the two games between the clubs last season. The corresponding fixture during the last campaign ended in a 1-1 draw after goals from Troy Deeney and Andre Ayew
West Ham last won at Watford in the Championship in 2011, when the Hammers ran out 4-0 winners during the early stages of the campaign. Mark Noble
, Adrian Mariappa and Troy Deeney are the only survivors from the squads that day.
It's time for the two teams to make their way out at Vicarage Road. It's a warm reception for Moyes, but that will change if the Hammers don't deliver this afternoon.
A reminder of the team news...
WATFORD XI: Gomes; Mariappa, Kabasele, Britos; Femenia, Cleverley, Doucoure, Zeegelaar; Hughes, Richarlison; Gray
WEST HAM UNITED XI: Hart; Zabaleta, Reid, Ogbonna, Cresswell; Noble, Kouyate, Obiang; Arnautovic, Lanzini, Carroll
KICKOFF! West Ham get us underway.
It has taken all of a few seconds for Carroll to leave Zeegelaar on the floor after a high challenge. There's a bit of elbow in there and he is probably a lucky boy.
We have already had two minutes pass by with Zeegelaar still receiving treatment. In all fairness, it was a heavy blow he took from Carroll, who had generated plenty of momentum when running towards the ball.
We are back underway. We will have a minimum of three minutes added-on time at the end of this first half.
Neither side are wasting much time in getting the ball forward. Watford seem confident of backing Richarlison and Gray against West Ham's back four, while the Hammers are looking straight for Carroll.
Now Kabasele is down after a challenge with Carroll. However, it is the defender's own doing having barged into the back of the forward. We haven't come anywhere near to an early chance in this game.
West Ham are finally taking some time to play the ball about. They have soon realised that long balls may not always be the way to go. Lanzini needs to get more involved, however.
GOAL! Watford 1-0 West Ham United (Will Hughes)
What a moment for Hughes - his first goal for Watford! Richarlison's cross was only half-cleared and after neat control and an equally bad shot from Gray, the ball fell to Hughes to fire into the bottom corner from eight yards. Disaster for Moyes.
Already, this feels like a big moment for Moyes. His side need to deliver some kind of response because Watford are starting to get on top. The Hammers cannot afford to concede a second at this stage in the game.
Both teams are throwing themselves into tackles but it is Watford who are coming out on the right end of them. The home supporters are warming to this start.
Watford have taken their foot off the accelerator a touch but that's not a bad thing. They know that they can push West Ham onto the back foot when they want to and the Hammers don't like it. Watford stopper Gomes has only touched the ball once in these opening 17 minutes.
What Watford are doing especially well is dealing with Lanzini and Arnautovic. Femenia and debutant Zeegelaar are not letting the attacking pair get behind them and the ball ends up returning in-field or back to the defence.
The only chance of this game has resulted in a goal. If we work to those rules, we should be due another goal any minute. Defences are certainly starting to get on top.
SHOT! Maybe not. Cresswell has just tried to catch Gomes out from around 80 yards out - he was about 20 yards inside his own half! It's not a bad effort but Gomes was always in control of the situation.
Lanzini has moved in-field to try to get on the ball but so far, he has not had much joy. Watford are set up well for facing West Ham, or I guess you could say that Moyes has gone with the wrong strategy. Either way, Watford continue to control this game.
BOOKING! Watford have it in for Carroll. Three strong challenges in succession dispossess the forward who is then booked for an off-the-ball coming together with Richarlison. It's not a booking but he knew what he was doing.
BOOKING! Kouyate moves out to the right and immediately gets a foul and yellow card out of Britos. Free kick for West Ham in a threatening position.
The free kick just misses Reid at the back post and it leads to a counter from the home side. Hughes breaks forward but he is all on his own and eventually has to settle for a throw-in.
CHANCES! Watford come so close to a second. Firstly, Richarlison curls a shot too close to Hart from around 14 yards out before Femenia drills the rebound inches wide of the far post from just inside the penalty area.
BOOKING! Arnautovic over-runs the ball and ends up going straight through Cleverley. It's studs up, too. He can count himself fortunate to only pick up a yellow.
SHOT! This is a tad ambitious from Britos, who tries a shot from 35 yards. It ends up in a seat around 35 rows up the stand behind the goal.
As we approach half time, West Ham would be well advised to try to shut up shop until after the break. Watford remain on top and look the most likely to score the next goal in this match.
BOOKING! Obiang becomes the third West Ham player to go into the book after a trip on Hughes.
CHANCE! West Ham should be level, but Gomes has made a worldie of a save. Noble's pass through to Kouyate on the edge of the box is sublime but the midfielder is somehow denied by the Brazilian goalkeeper from no more than 10 yards out.
CHANCE! Watford are straight back up the other end and Hughes has the chance to add a second. However, Femenia's cross is behind him and his instinctive volley goes into the stand.
There will be four minutes of added-on time.
This has been the story of Lanzini's half. West Ham break and spray the ball out wide for the Argentine. However, one bad touch later and the playmaker is swarmed by three Watford players.
SAVES! How have West Ham not scored! Arnautovic's initial header is comfortably saved by Gomes but the winger is favourite to net the rebound from inside the six-yard box. However, Gomes sticks out a hand to keep the ball out and Watford survive.
HALF TIME: Watford 1-0 West Ham United
The half-time whistle goes at Vicarage Road and somehow, Watford remain ahead thanks to Hughes's early goal. The home side have been the better side but Gomes has had to make two almost miraculous blocks to keep his side in the lead. Moyes will be frustrated but his new players are giving this a go.
The goal came in the 11th minute as Hughes benefitted from a scuffed shot from Gray to direct a shot into the bottom corner from around 10 yards out. The young midfielder is making just his second Premier League start for the Hornets, and his first at Vicarage Road.
West Ham should be level, however, with Kouyate and Arnautovic both wasting opportunities from close range. There is no doubting that they should both score, but credit must also go to Gomes, who somehow managed to get himself in the way.
Moyes has work to do at the break but he will be encouraged with how his side have responded to falling behind. Watford could have still doubled their lead but there is at least ambition to get an equaliser at the other end.
KICKOFF! We are back underway in the second half.
The message from Moyes will be to start fast but it is Watford who waste little time in getting onto the front foot. We have spoken about West Ham needing something from this game, but Watford also need the victory - they have lost a lot of points from winning positions.
We are still trying to work out West Ham's setup for the start of this second half. Lanzini seems to be playing behind Carroll, and Kouyate playing out wide. It's certainly not his usual position.
CHANCE! Femenia does well on the right before sending a low cross towards Gray. However, it's a sharp chance and the summer signing can only fire wide from close range.
CHANCE! Yet another clear-cut chance goes begging for West Ham. It's Kouyate again who blazes over from 12 yards after fine work from Arnautovic to get to the byline.
SHOT! How has this missed? Doucoure is teed up on the edge of the area and his shot from 20 yards appears to be heading for the far corner with Hart beaten. However, the ball curls away at the last second and West Ham survive.
SHOT! Watford press again and it's Hughes who gets a shot away on this occasion. However, the sting is taken out of his effort by a defender and Hart is able to claim.
Watford are starting to get back into the rhythm which served them well in the first half. It's helped by the fact that West Ham have started to sit a little bit deeper, which isn't going to help their cause.
SHOT! It's almost two for Watford. Gray has impressed today and he almost gets his reward with a shot from just inside the area, but a slight deflection takes his effort wide.
SAVE! It's all Watford. A cross comes in from the right and Mariappa's header is going into the bottom corner until Hart makes an excellent save down to his right.
I'd be surprised if Watford don't add to their lead if West Ham don't change something. The visitors are just inviting pressure and Watford are obliging.
GOAL! Watford 2-0 West Ham United (Richarlison)
It had been coming. Hughes passes the ball out to Richarlison on the left and after running into the penalty area, the Brazilian flicked the ball onto his left foot before driving a shot into the far corner from an acute angle. Hart should do better.
SUBSTITUTION! Moyes had been waiting to introduce Sakho long before the second goal. Carroll is the man to make way.
SHOT! Watford are not settling for two. Doucoure gets another shot away from the edge of the area but his attempt is weak and too close to Hart.
Arnautovic is in a lot of pain here. The winger is holding his wrist and he is visibly distressed. He fell awkwardly after a challenge with a Watford defender. This is probably going to lead to a second change.
It is difficult to see what Arnautovic has done here but he continues to be treated. He has done some damage to his wrist or thumb. It's possible he may have dislocated his thumb. Nevertheless, Masuaku is coming on. There is going to be a lot of stoppage time.
SUBSTITUTION! Arnautovic wanted to stay on but West Ham have gone through with the change.
CHANCE! I have no idea how West Ham have not scored in this football match. Masuaku makes an immediate impression by finding Lanzini at the back post, but the Argentine's low strike is cleared off the line by Mariappa. Gomes was beaten.
West Ham certainly deserve a goal from this match but Watford are still chasing a third. This has developed into a highly-entertaining contest and even though West Ham will be criticised should they lose, Moyes will take lots of positives from this game.
We haven't mentioned Zeegelaar's contribution this afternoon but the Dutchman has been excellent on his debut. He certainly adds a lot of pace down the left flank and Silva will rightly feel that he has missed the defender's involvement since his arrival.
There are just the 10 minutes to go at Vicarage Road but there will be at least four minutes of added-on time. This isn't a lost cause for the Hammers, they are still looking for a way back into this contest.
BOOKING! Noble goes into the book for hauling down Richarlison. It's frustration more than anything.
SUBSTITUTION! It's time for Hughes to make way to a standing ovation. Pereyra is being introduced in his place.
SUBSTITUTION! Femenia is going to have to be withdrawn too. The right-back has sustained a hamstring injury. Holebas is coming on.
Watford have started the process of running down the clock. There are signs that West Ham's race is run. It's going to be a defeat for Moyes in his first game in charge.
There are going to be EIGHT minutes of added-on time.
Despite the boost of having so much time added on, West Ham simply can't get on the ball in the final third. Watford are seeing this match out in confident style, which is impressive given that they let slip a two-goal lead against Everton in their previous match.
West Ham win a free kick on the right flank but Reid's header from the delivery is glanced well wide of the far post.
SHOT! We mentioned in the build-up that Richarlison likes a shot on goal and he almost adds his second of the match with a curling effort from 18 yards which just goes wide of the far post.
FULL TIME: Watford 2-0 West Ham United
The full-time whistle goes at Vicarage Road and goals from Hughes and Richarlison have secured victory for Watford. West Ham wasted three huge chances in Moyes's first game in charge but the home side were probably deserving winners.
That will be all from Sports Mole
for this game. Thank you for joining us this afternoon and we hope to see you again soon.
If you would like to read our on-the-whistle match report, you can do so by clicking here. Goodbye for now.