West Ham United travel to Stamford Bridge to face London rivals Chelsea on Monday night.
The Hammers go into the game off the back of what Manuel Pellegrini described as their worst performance of the season in the 2-0 defeat to Everton last time out.
The meek display could and probably should have resulted in a heavier loss were it not for Lukasz Fabianski.
Pellegrini is coming under pressure for the first time since the start of his West Ham tenure. Fans are growing fed up of the team’s inconsistency but know he has been hamstrung by injuries.
Reports emerged during the week that West Ham might even consider replacing him with Lyon boss Bruno Genesio this summer, although Hammers insider ExWHUemployee was quick to rule that out.
Pellegrini to ring the changes
West Ham face an in-form Chelsea knowing defeat will all but end any fading hopes of finishing seventh in the Premier League and earning a potential route into Europe.
Pellegrini slammed his players for the Everton debacle.
But ahead of the game he admitted his squad was just not strong enough to cope with their Premier League-worst injury list.
The Chilean will have four players back who were unavailable last time out, though.
And he intends to make five changes to the team for Chelsea.
Ryan Fredericks in for Pablo Zabaleta
Zabaleta is a fan favourite at West Ham and has been so reliable for the last two seasons. But the 34-year-old has started to look his age as the season has wore on. He and Aaron Cresswell were torn apart by Everton and his lack of pace badly exposed. Fredericks has hardly covered himself in glory this season failing to make the right back spot his own. But one thing he does possess is pace and it will be sorely needed up against the likes of Callum Hudson-Odoi and Eden Hazard.
Michail Antonio in for Robert Snodgrass
Antonio looks short of confidence at the moment. But nobody has worked harder than him in a West Ham shirt of late. West Ham looked weak and slow against Everton. They need pace and power to even have a chance of success at Stamford Bridge. And Antonio brings both of those things. He will replace Robert Snodgrass for this one.
Samir Nasri in for Manuel Lanzini
If anyone needs a rest at the moment it is Manuel Lanzini. The Argentine had his worst game in a West Ham shirt in the defeat to the Toffees with an uncharacteristically sloppy performance on and off the ball. He looked leggy after playing too many minutes following nine months out with a serious knee injury. Pellegrini has been forced to use Lanzini perhaps more than he would have liked since his comeback due to West Ham’s desperate injury situation. But he will be rested in favour of fit again Nasri, who was brilliant the last time he played, single-handedly helping turn the game against Huddersfield on its head.
Mark Noble in for Pedro Obiang
Obiang looks like a player who knows he is leaving the club this summer. A once crucial member of the starting XI, he has regressed and looks in need of a fresh challenge. Mark Noble could not play against Everton for personal reasons. But he is available again and will come back into the team alongside Declan Rice.
Felipe Anderson in for Lucas Perez
Lucas Perez was a touch unfortunate to be substituted against Everton as he was certainly no worse than any of his teammates. But he is another player who looks set to leave this summer. Record signing Felipe Anderson has gone off the boil in the last two months. But his pace and guile were sorely missed last time out. He will come back in for Perez.
Predicted West Ham team to face Chelsea
Fabianski, Fredericks, Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Antonio, Rice, Nasri, Noble, Anderson, Arnautovic.