The London Stadium once again hosts Premier League action as West Ham entertain Watford in East London. Their opening party against Bournemouth didn’t quite live up to the hype but they did manage to get three points thanks to Michail Antonio’s late winner. Hammers fans would have taken that but they will also hope that it’s not a precursor to times ahead in the coming months.
In their last game before the international break they were well beaten by Manchester City as Pep Guardiola’s side ran out 3-1 winners and so far they have failed to match the levels of performance which got them on the verge of a European place last season.
That said they are missing a whole raft of players no less than Dimitri Payet who was so influential in all that West Ham did in the previous campaign. He should be due back this afternoon and West Ham fans will be hoping he can reignite what has been a slightly stagnant West Ham side.
Their opposition Watford were also soundly beaten before the international break as Arsenal got the better of them at Vicarage Road. Manager Walter Mazzari will have taken some comfort by their second half performance as Odion Ighalo’s goal gave them a glimmer of hope but by that point the game was all but a foregone conclusion.
The bigger concern will be the fact that Watford are still searching for their first win of the season. The decision to get rid of Quique Sanchez Flores would have raised some eyebrows but the Pozzo family who own the club do have a habit of getting through managers quite quickly, at the moment though the decision to get rid of the Spainard doesn’t look all that inspired.
I think the search for that first win will have to wait at least another week as West Ham with Payet back in the fold should have the edge in what is somewhat of a local derby. I say local but you could build a lake around the edge of West Ham’s stadium and still not got anywhere near the technical area. I’ll go for a home win as The Hornets fail to burst The Hammers bubble.