West Ham United welcome Southampton to the London Stadium in their biggest game of the season so far.

The Hammers are mired in the relegation battle with 11 games to play.

And realistically they must win five of them to survive. That is a sentiment captain Mark Noble agrees with (whufc.com).

West Ham have the games to do it. David Moyes’s side have a run of winnable home matches between now and the end of the season.

But the East Londoners have won just once in eight Premier League games since the Scot returned to the club.

Photo by Avril Husband West Ham United FC via Getty Images

Crunch time for West Ham

They face having to turn relegation form into Champions League form by winning nearly half their remaining games to stay up.

One of them must be against the in-form Saints on Saturday.

Southampton have won seven of their last 11 games since losing to the Hammers at home back in December.

Moyes has been under fire for his team selection and tactics since returning to the club.

And he is set for his most important team selection yet. He simply must get it right.

Moyes will make two changes to his side.

Photo by Avril Husband West Ham United FC via Getty Images

Moyes to make two changes for Saints

With Tomas Soucek injured, Pablo Fornals finally comes in from the start after impressing as the Czech midfielder’s replacement at Anfield.

Moyes has baffled West Ham fans by freezing Fornals out.

 

But the Spaniard proved he is up to the task of playing centrally, his preferred position and where he shone for Spain’s Under 21s on their way to European Championship glory last summer.

The other change will be a more difficult decision.

Jarrod Bowen comes in for his first start after two promising substitute cameos. But who does Moyes leave out?

Photo by Clive Brunskill Getty Images

Dilemma but Scot will drop Anderson

Felipe Anderson, Michail Antonio and Mark Noble are all candidates.

If Moyes drops Anderson Bowen will start on the left. If he drops Antonio he will start up front. If he drops Noble, Snodgrass would tuck into a central position and Bowen would start on the right.

West Ham need as much pace in their team as possible. But Snodgrass’s delivery from set pieces has been crucial.

There is a myth that Anderson does not work hard – his defensive and sprint statistics are higher than Snodgrass.

It is a difficult call.

But Moyes will keep faith in Noble and Snodgrass and drop Anderson to the bench instead.

Predicted West Ham starting XI for Southampton:

Fabianski, Ngakia, Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Rice, Noble, Fornals, Snodgrass, Bowen, Antonio.

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