Chelsea at West Ham Team News: Pulisic, Christensen, Haller


Yesterday saw Chelsea FC defeating Leicester City in the FA Cup quarterfinals, and later learning that Manchester United await them in the semis next month. Now up next is a Wednesday night London derby at West Ham United.

Both sides come into this one trying to stay above a certain demarcation point. For visiting Chelsea, it’s a fight to remain in the top four and qualify for Europe. For the host Hammers, it’s a battle to avoid the drop zone. Let’s preview.

Team News

Christian Pulisic has been red hot since the restart for Chelsea, drawing some very lofty comparisons from manager Frank Lampard. He is however a slight doubt here after coming off in the win against Leicester City after just 18 minutes due to a calf issue.

Andreas Christensen is also a doubt after missing out on Sunday with a hip problem.

“He felt tightness in his calf during second drinks break so took him off straight away,” Lampard said od Pulisic, quote via Football.London.

“We’ll see in next day. Andreas had a problem in his hip, didn’t feel comfortable in training yesterday so was out of the squad.”

Robert Snodgrass is unavailable due to a back injury for David Moyes’ side, while Sebastien Haller is also expected to miss out due to a hip injury. Otherwise the hosts do not have any fresh fitness concerns.

Chelsea FC at West Ham United FYIs

Kickoff: July 1, 8:15 pm, London Stadium

Form Guide: Chelsea WWWWW    West Ham United  LLLWL

Starting XI Predictions: go to this link

Key Stat: Leicester are +16 on Chelsea in goal differential for the season, but only one point ahead of the Blues in the standings. The Blues certainly won’t be winning any tie-breakers over the Foxes this season, but current momentum makes it feel like the fourth place side will soon be leapfrogging the current third place dwellers.

Position: Chelsea are fourth, up two points and with a game in hand on fifth place Wolverhampton Wanderers. West Ham are 17th, the final safety position, but only via tie-breaker. The Irons are level on points with the drop zone.

Prediction: Chelsea 3, West Ham United 0

Seeing the kind of form that the Blues have been in lately, the way that Pulisic and company carved up the powerhouse that is Manchester City, you can’t pick against them here.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports, which is partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly contributes to WGN TVSports IllustratedChicago Now and SB Nation.

You can follow Banks, a former writer for Chicago Tribune.comon Twitter and his cat on Instagram.

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