Chelsea v West Ham United - Match Preview, Stats & Team News

Chelsea Fans

To be played on Wednesday 29th January 2014 at 19:45. Venue: Stamford Bridge, London.

Odds: Chelsea 1/5, Draw 6/1, West Ham United 17/1

Last season: 2-0

Preview & injury news

Chelsea are rightly hot favourites going into this game as they have won six of their past seven league games, drawing the other, and there have been some tricky fixtures in that run where they have faced Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester United. They have kept their momentum going having booked their place in the fifth-round of the FA Cup at the weekend.

West Ham, however, are in the bottom three on 18 points, but with it being such a tight relegation battle they know that every point is going to be crucial between now and the end of the season. The Hammers' form is pretty poor having only won two of their last 10 league games, and losing six of the others - not to mention they were subject to another defeat by Manchester City in the second leg of the League Cup semi-final in their last outing. 

On the injury front, Chelsea came through their cup tie with no fresh injury worries. Fernando Torres misses out as he is recovering from a lateral knee ligament injury and should be in line for a return in late February while Marco Van Ginkel continues his recovery from a long-term anterior cruciate knee ligament injury.

For West Ham, they have a few more problems though Guy Demel and Joey O'Brien have a chance of being included in Sam Allardyce's squad. There have been signs that Ricardo Vaz Te could make a return from his shoulder injury as well. However, Mohamed Diame is out with a knee injury, George McCartney has a neck problem and is likely to miss out, whilst Joe Cole will not be appearing against his former club with a groin injury.

However, two new signings from Italy could be available for the short visit to Stamford Bridge to make their Premier League debuts, Roma striker Marco Borriello and midfielder Antonio Nocerino from AC Milan - who are both on loan until the end of the season.

Key stats

Here the the two sides' top scorers in the Premier League this season:

NameTeamPosGoalsAppsMins
Eden Hazard Chelsea FW 9 22 1,836
Samuel Eto'o Chelsea FW 6 12 719
Oscar Chelsea MF 6 20 1,346
NameTeamPosGoalsAppsMins
Carlton Cole West Ham FW 5 12 488
Joe Cole West Ham MF 3 14 635
Ravel Morrison West Ham MF 3 16 1,154

Their average possession stats

NamePossession PercentageGames
Chelsea 53.91 22
NamePossession PercentageGames
West Ham United 43.32 22

And the amount of clean sheets they have kept this season...

NameClean SheetGames
Chelsea 8 22
NameClean SheetGames
West Ham United 9 22

5 players to watch

Oscar - The Brazilian was in terrific form in the cup tie against Stoke City by tormenting their defence and scoring a wonderful free kick. It is little wonder that Mourinho would like him to be the key players in his side as he continues to build the side in his second spell at Chelsea.

Antonio Nocerino - The midfielder could well be thrown in at the deep end but it is an opportunity to show why he's played for one of the most illustrious clubs in the world, and to show that he is a man that is capable of helping the Hammers avoid relegation in what is going to be a very tough midfield battle for the Italian international.

Frank Lampard - Lampard comes up against his former club once again having scored twice against them in the reverse fixture. If he plays he will probably be seeing a lot of the ball in the middle of the park as the visitors will try and remain solid and difficult to break down. He could well haunt his former club again.

James Tomkins - Defence has been a big problem for the Hammers in recent weeks, some of it down to injury, other times it has been down to poor play. But Tomkins lines up at the heart of the back line again, and he is going to need to put in a very good performance if they are to escape from Stamford Bridge with anything.

Demba Ba - Samuel Eto'o has lined up for Chelsea in the past couple of games, but Jose Mourinho likes to keep his strikers fresh. With no Fernando Torres, this could be a great chance for Ba to show he has a big role to play for the side.

Earlier on in the season 

West Ham United 0-3 Chelsea, November 2013

It was a very comfortable victory for Chelsea earlier on this season as the Hammers continued to struggle in front of goal, while Chelsea started to raise their game on the road. Frank Lampard gave Chelsea the lead midway through the first from the penalty spot after Oscar was brought down by Jussi Jaaskelainen in the West Ham goal following a poor back-pass from Guy Demel. Oscar doubled the Blues' lead with a fine strike ten minutes before half-time. Frank Lampard rounded off the scoring late on with a strike from the edge of the area. 

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