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West Ham vs Sunderland – Match Preview

Editor’s Note: West Ham are fresh off a 5 star performance in the F.A. Cup away at Blackburn last Sunday but it’s their League form which has taken a slight stuttering over the last two matches and they will look to return to winning ways with a victory of relegation battling Sunderland.

The Hammers had a slight scare at Ewood Park after going behind through Ben Marshall but once they leveled thanks to Victor Moses they never looked back and strolled to victory and subsequently a 6th Round tie against Manchester United.

Their last outing in the Premier League saw them come from behind to salvage a point against another relegation battling side Norwich. They didn’t really get going until they went 2-0 down so although Slaven Bilic would be happy with a point at the end of the day, you would probably have to look at it as two points dropped.

That draw and previous defeat to Southampton has seen them swap places with the South Coast side and they now find themselves in 7th. Depending on the Cup winners which they may even win the F.A. Cup themselves that could still see them feature in next seasons Europa League.

For their opponents Sunderland the Europa League is all but a pipe dream with the sole objective being Premier League survival. They did their chances a massive boost a fortnight ago with a huge win over Manchester United one that closes the gap to their nearest rivals Newcastle and safety to just a point.

The sub plot to this Afternoon’s encounter between the two sides will no doubt be Sam Allardyce’s return to Upton Park. Allardyce who didn’t have his contract renewed at the end of the last season is now seeing Slaven Bilic get the best out of the foundations that Allardyce and how much he would love to get one over his former club.

A second win in a row for Sunderland could see them move out of the drop zone and continue the positive momentum. There are only 12 games to go so they are going to have to start adding to their 6 wins if they have any hope of beating the drop.

I don’t think it’s going to be win Number 7 for Sunderland this Afternoon. Dimitri Payet looked on top form last Sunday and I would expect more of the same against a struggling Sunderland. A win for West Ham to boost their Europa League hopes while Sunderland stay in the drop zone.

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