Former Arsenal attacker Paul Merson has backed West Ham United to get all three points from the Premier League clash against Newcastle United on Saturday.
"I watched West Ham last week at Everton and I thought they were bang unlucky," he wrote on Skysports.com. "I thought they were decent.
"They should have at least got a draw out of the game. They had a lot injuries - Sakho, and Valencia didn’t play and Carroll played up front. Downing was out last week as well and he’ll be back, he’s a big player them.
"Was it a blessing in disguise they lost? Maybe. If they had won that game and Carroll and Nolan played well, what happens this week? Do they play again and then we're back to last season's team?
"Look what happened last season when the crowd were on their backs and they didn’t win but the team played well, so do you go and put the big boys back in again? I know they’re on a roll Newcastle, but I can’t see anything but a West Ham win this week."
Downing has been a key player for West Ham so far this season, and his return to the team will certainly boost the Hammers’ chances of winning against Newcastle.
The 30-year-old England international attacking midfielder has scored two goals and created 34 chances in 11 league appearances, while having a 84% pass accuracy and a 47% shot accuracy.
Former Liverpool star Downing will be key in unlocking a Newcastle defence that has kept four clean sheets in a row.