West Ham are currently in all sorts of bother.
The Hammers are sitting in 18th spot in the Premier League table, one point adrift of safety. And the prospect of relegation down to the Championship is looming large.
David Moyes’s men do have a game in hand on most of the teams in and around them in the table, however. And that’s not the only positive.
Here are 10 reasons for West Ham fans to be optimistic heading into the final 13 games of the season:
Anderson coming back
The Brazilian has been far from his best this season. He did begin to show his best form again in the two weeks leading up to his injury, however. And a fully fit and firing Anderson could make all the difference for the Hammers.
Results seem to be going our way finally
There was a point this season where every team in and around West Ham seemed to be picking up vital results. That hasn’t been the case in recent weeks, however. Last weekend, Brighton and Watford drew, whilst Sheffield United beat Bournemouth. And this weekend, Aston Villa, Norwich, Newcastle and Southampton all lost. Long may that continue.
Soucek and Bowen have had three weeks to work and train with new teammates
The Hammers brought in Tomas Soucek and Jarrod Bowen in January and both players are expected to have a big impact at the London Stadium. The problem is that neither of them will have much chance to settle. They have had three weeks without a game to work on getting acclimatised to the way in which David Moyes wants his team to play, however. And that could prove to be invaluable.
Everyone is healthy and fit now apart from Jack Wilshere
Moyes has a full selection of players to choose from, aside from Jack Wilshere. When everyone is fit, West Ham have a very strong group of players. And that kind of competition for places is exactly what they need heading into some very tough games.
We’ve done it before in 2007
The current situation might look bleak, but it’s nowhere near as bad as it was 13 years ago. Carlos Tevez inspired the Hammers to a miraculous escape in 2007. The east Londoners won seven of their last nine matches to retain their Premier League status. And the current side need to channel the spirit and fight demonstrated by that team 13 years ago.
Players won’t want 50 per cent wage decrease
The Daily Mail reported earlier this month that the West Ham players might have to take a 50 per cent wage cut if they are relegated down to the Championship this season. Obviously they will not want this. And hopefully the threat of their salaries being halved will motivate them to have a very strong finish to the campaign.
The 29-year-old Hammers ace is an absolute warrior. He is arguably Moyes’s most important player. When Antonio is on form, he is unstoppable, with his unrivalled pace and power. If he remains fit, West Ham have a great chance of staying up this season.
We’ve won five and drawn one against the 13 remaining teams we still have to play
West Ham still have 13 teams left to play, and in the corresponding fixtures against those sides earlier on in the season, we won five and drew one. If the Hammers manage to repeat that points tally, it will put us on 40 points, and that might just be enough to avoid the drop.
Chelsea, City, Tottenham, Arsenal and United are all fallible
Sure, West Ham have some incredibly tough games remaining on paper. But aside from Liverpool, all of the so-called big teams have proven that they are fallible this season. They have all lost multiple games to teams currently inside the bottom half of the table.
Chelsea have lost games against Newcastle, Southampton, Bournemouth and the Hammers already this season. City, meanwhile, have lost to Wolves (twice) and Norwich, whilst drawing at home to Crystal Palace.
Spurs have lost to Southampton, Brighton and Newcastle. Meanwhile, Arsenal have lost to Brighton and have drawn more games than they have won. Finally, Manchester United have lost to Burnley, Watford, Bournemouth and Newcastle.
So on their day, West Ham have it in them to get at all of those teams.
Kevin Nolan on board
The former Hammers skipper returned to the club in a coaching capacity earlier this month, and he will undoubtedly prove to be a great addition. He was always a great leader during his time playing at Upton Park, and West Ham really need his character around the place at the moment. At the very least, he will give the players some much needed motivation heading into the final stretch.