MX23RW : Thursday, September 23 05:25:10| >> :120:26204:26204:
Jan 10, 2020 at 8pm UK at Bramall Lane
Attendance: 30,124
Sheff UtdSheffield United
West HamWest Ham United
McBurnie (53')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Preview: Sheffield United vs. West Ham United - prediction, team news, lineups

Sports Mole provides team news, predicted lineups and a full preview of Friday night's Premier League game between Sheffield United and West Ham United.

Sheffield United play host to West Ham United in the Premier League on Friday night having failed to win any of their last three fixtures in the top flight.

Meanwhile, David Moyes marked his return to the Hammers with a 4-0 victory over Bournemouth, a result which has kept the club out of the relegation zone.

Match preview

Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder pictured on December 5, 2019© Reuters

Despite a three-match winless streak having led to the club dropping outside of the top six, Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder will put the run of results over the Christmas and New Year period into context instead of making rash assessments about his team.

While only achieving a share of the spoils at home to Watford came as a disappointment, there will be an acknowledgement of the improvements which the Hornets have since made under the continued guidance of Nigel Pearson, effectively making their lowly position irrelevant when taking everything into consideration.

The following 2-0 defeats came at Manchester City and Liverpool in quick succession, with a controversial goal at the Etihad Stadium leading to Wilder's side missing out on at least a point against the champions.

In the grand scheme of things, however, Sheffield United remain just two points behind fifth-placed Manchester United, with a nine-point gap being established ahead of the relegation zone.

With the latter realistically no longer a concern, Wilder will feel that his team can attack the second half of the season in a bid to qualify for the Europa League.

West Ham would have hoped for similar circumstances after more big-money arrivals during the summer, but the arrival of David Moyes has occurred with the threat of relegation concerning the powers-that-be at the Hammers.

The demolition of Bournemouth on New Year's Day, followed by a hard-fought triumph at Gillingham in the FA Cup, has represented the perfect start for the Scot, who has work to do in order to win over supporters at the London Stadium.

However, a run of fixtures against Everton, Leicester City and Liverpool follow the meeting in Yorkshire, leaving Moyes with an uphill task when it comes to getting more points on the board as soon as possible.

On a positive note, West Ham have performed solidly away from home this season, with victories having been recorded at Chelsea and Southampton since the middle of November.

Sheffield United Premier League form: WWWDLL
Sheffield United form (all competitions): WWDLLW

West Ham United Premier League form: LLWLLW
West Ham United form (all competitions): LWLLWW

Team News

Pablo Zabaleta in action for West Ham United in a friendly on July 14, 2018© Reuters

With Ryan Fredericks having been ruled out until the middle of February, Pablo Zabaleta is expected to come into the Hammers side at right-back.

Moyes also has doubts over Aaron Cresswell, Mark Noble and Michail Antonio, likely meaning that it would be a surprise if all three featured in the starting lineup.

Carlos Sanchez may come back into the team if Noble misses out, with Jack Wilshere still out of contention for a return to the squad.

As for the hosts, Wilder will make mass alterations having rested his first-choice players for the FA Cup tie with AFC Fylde.

The Blades boss may revert back to the team which began the setback at Liverpool last Thursday.

Sheffield United possible starting lineup:
Henderson; Basham, Egan, O'Connell; Baldock, Lundstram, Norwood, Fleck, Stevens; McGoldrick, Mousset

West Ham United possible starting lineup:
Fabianski; Zabaleta, Balbuena, Ogbonna, Masuaku; Snodgrass, Rice, Noble, Fornals; Anderson; Haller

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We say: Sheffield United 1-1 West Ham United

Given the recent improvement of West Ham, we can see the visitors grinding out a result at Bramall Lane. However, the Blades are strong in front of their own supporters, and they should have enough to avoid another defeat.

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