They may have already had a glamour friendly and a Europa League qualifier at the Olympic Stadium but this afternoon sees Premier League action finally come to West Ham’s new home as they play host to Eddie Howe’s Bournemouth. Both sides tasting defeat over the opening weekend and naturally both sides will be looking to bounce back.
It’s not quite the 60,000 sell out that West Ham were expecting as Newham Council have only allowed them 57,000 seats due to licensing infringements from their first two games at the stadium but that doesn’t mean the atmosphere will be any less partisan.
A feisty London derby on Monday saw them fall to a last minute Chelsea goal from Diego Costa, Slaven Bilic’s men would have certainly been aggrieved as Costa could very well have been sent off for his tackle on Adrian. They thought they had come away with a well earned point thanks to James Collins equaliser but the Spanish international Costa would have the final say and consign The Hammers to defeat.
That result would have been hard to swallow but the subsequent news that new record signigng Andre Ayew is now ruled out for four months due to injury will have been a hammer blow for Slaven Bilic and his early season preparations. He will have to decide whether or not to go back into the transfer market before the end of the month for additional attacking reinforcements.
For their opponents Bournemouth they offered very little at home to Manchester United on Sunday and Eddie Howe will have to get more out of his men for this trip to East London. Last season saw Bournemouth pick up their first ever Premier League win when they got the better of a 7 goal thriller at Upton Park, how they would love to spoil the party.
Bournemouth have spent big by their own standards but you get the feeling they may have been better suited spending that money on defence rather than attack. Jordon Ibe at £15m looks somewhat of a luxury player and with the Cherries set to battle against second season syndrome is it a luxury that they can afford?
Bournemouth are going to have to pick up points on the road this season if they are to have any chance of staying up but I don’t think they will be opening their account today. It looks set to be the perfect house warming party for West Ham as they pick up a brand new home win.