With ten matches remaining before the busy Christmas period and 30 points up for grabs, West Ham could find themselves in a very healthy position come the turn of the year.
The Hammers have a relatively good run of matches on the horizon where they will face only four clubs who finished in the top half of the table last season – Manchester City, Everton, Stoke City and Newcastle. The latter three are not in the best form at the moment, though, and West Ham could fancy their chances.
Swansea City is the only other club they face in their ten games up to Christmas that finished above them last term and along with Manchester City, they are the only side that are currently above them in the league standings.
A trip to newly-promoted and winless Burnley is up next for the Irons, a match from which they would be disappointed to take anything less than three points. Then comes the freebie at home to Man City where anything gained is seen as a bonus, before a tricky but not impossible trip to the Britannia Stadium to face Stoke.
Aston Villa at the Boleyn Ground follows that and is a match Sam Allardyce would hope to win prior to their visit to Everton, which is always a tough place to pick up points. Then their next five matches are all very winnable, assuming they carry on playing in the manner that they have in their opening seven games.
They are: Newcastle (H), West Bromwich Albion (A), Swansea (H), Sunderland (A) and Leicester City (H). Based on current form, only Swansea and Leicester would cause this West Ham side any problems in my opinion.
If the Hammers can pick up between 14 and 17 points from these ten fixtures, they will be around the 25-point mark and in a very healthy position in the league come Christmas Day, but there is no reason why they can’t pick up more.
Allardyce should have a fully-fit squad at his disposal for the next match – barring Andy Carroll – and a wealth of talent that is hungry and ready to prove their worth this season. If they can stay fit and get on a run of good form putting in consistent performances they could even surpass expectations.
Boxing Day sees the start of the busy schedule of three matches in quick succession which is always a tough time to put some points on the board, but the fact they face Chelsea, Arsenal and West Brom may relieve some pressure, especially if they manage to collect a pleasing amount of points from the ten games prior.
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