West Ham United have been training ahead of Monday night’s trip to Aston Villa.

The clash of the claret and blues is an intriguing tussle.

Many pundits and fans have tipped West Ham to compete for a place in what is regarded as a wide open top six this season.

Aston Villa will provide a stern test of those credentials having already proved a more than capable side so far.

Photo by Arfa Griffiths West Ham United FC via Getty Images

Clash of the claret and blues

And both sides have powerful expensive new strikers who have been impressing so far in their debut Premier League campaigns.

West Ham have been winning admirers this season with their impressive performances since losing 5-0 on the opening day to Manchester City.

Depending on results elsewhere, the Hammers can propel themselves into the top four of the fledgling table with a third consecutive Premier League victory.

The Hammers comfortably beat Norwich 2-0 last time out in a game they should have won by a bigger margin.

Photo by Arfa Griffiths West Ham United FC via Getty Images

Break came at wrong time for Hammers

The international break came at the wrong time for West Ham.

Aston Villa meanwhile were left to stew on the fury sparked by the controversial refereeing decision which saw them denied a last gasp point at Crystal Palace.

West Ham have been all smiles in training.

Only Michail Antonio and Winston Reid are sidelined.

There were fears star playmaker Manuel Lanzini could be rested for Villa after only arriving back on Friday night from his time away with Argentina.

Photo by Arfa Griffiths West Ham United FC via Getty Images

Pellegrini spotted in deep conversation with duo

But Lanzini was spotted unscathed in training on Friday morning.

 

Sebastien Haller, Adriy Yarmolenko, Pablo Fornals and Declan Rice were also caught on camera at Rush Green.

And Pellegrini was also spotted deep in conversation with midfield duo Jack Wilshere and Mark Noble.

Here are a selection of pictures from the pre-Villa training session.

West Ham pre-Villa training picture gallery

Photos by Arfa Griffiths West Ham United FC via Getty Images

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