West Ham United host former previous BPL champions Chelsea at Boleyn ground on Oct. 24 10 am (EST). The leagues aptly named, “giant killers” for upset victories over Arsenal and Swansea City have the chance to do it again.
There are more than a few elements that bode well for West Ham this weekend. The club currently sits at 4th in the league and is enjoying one of its best starts ever in the top-tier league under Slaven Bilic.
Summer Transfer Signing Dimitri Payet
Dimitri Payet is proving to be one of the best transfer market moves of the summer. The french national forward has five goals and three assists in 9 games. Payet has also created 39 goal scoring opportunities for West Ham, more than any other player in the British Premier League.
Payet is currently the tip of the spear for West Ham’s attack, but he’s backed by Diafra Sakho and Cheikhou Kouyaté who both have netted three goals a piece as well. Although in their last five matches Chelsea haven’t conceded a single goal to West Ham the Hammer offense is stronger than ever before.
The Numbers are Due for a Reversal
Chelsea has won 17 out of 18 of their last matches against West Ham. Mourinho as Chelsea’s manager has only lost 5 of his 52 London Derby match-ups in his career.
But in 2015 West Ham sits at 4th in the table and Chelsea in 12th. West Ham has earned five hard fought victories and found the net 20 times to the Blues who have only 3 wins and 14 goals to show in 9 games.
Now is West Ham’s moment to put a blemish on Chelsea’s struggling campaign. The Hammers have the opportunity and the form right now to payback at least 1 of those last 18 games and you can expect them to feed off that energy. The tables are all set to be turned on last year’s champions.
Chelsea’s Plagued with Scandal
A short list of everything that Chelsea have gone through thus far in 2015:
Drama with the head Physio, Mourinho v. Wenger flame war, Diego Costa suspension, Mourinho fined and threatened to be banned, Hazard, Fabregas are both playing as shadows of their former selves, and 3 wins to the club’s name.
It’s been such a rough start for Chelsea that rumors have spread of Mourinho resigning, a rift between the manager and John Terry, and the organization making the uncharacteristic move of issuing a support statement to the Portuguese manager.
With the Blues in disarray and no signs of righting the ship before Saturday’s match-up, West Ham could walk away from the weekend with a victory that would likely put them within the top three. Factoring in that Manchester United (Number 3) and Manchester City (Number 1) are set to duel this Sunday at Old Trafford (10:05 EST)
We’ll see this weekend if West Ham has what it takes to let the mighty hammer swing on the boys in blue for Chelsea.