There has been a major boost for David Moyes as Frank Lampard confirms five key Everton stars are out of the West Ham clash.
The last international break of the season is over and West Ham are back in action against former Hammer Frank Lampard’s relegation-threatened Everton this Sunday.
The match comes four days before West Ham’s huge Europa League quarter-final against Lyon.
But the Premier League game is first up and is massive for both West Ham and Everton for very different reasons.
Moyes’s boys will be desperate to get back to winning ways in their pursuit of a top six spot after the 3-1 defeat to Spurs last time out.
Everton meanwhile need every point they can get in their battle to stave off a shock relegation.
West Ham go into the game as favourites, with 10 places separating them and the Toffees in the table.
And there has been a major boost for Moyes as Lampard confirms five key Everton stars are out of the West Ham clash this weekend.
Speaking in his pre-match press conference, Lampard revealed that Yerry Mina, Andros Townsend, Fabian Delph and Tom Davies will all miss the West Ham match through injury.
And Brazilian midfielder Allan will also miss the game through suspension.
Alleged West Ham target Dominic Calvert-Lewin looks set to start as he continues his comeback from a long injury lay-off.
The Hammers will be wary of the all-action striker as it was his goal in Everton’s smash and grab 1-0 win at the London Stadium during last season’s run in that dented the Hammers’s Champions League hopes.
“The break has been positive for Dominic (Calvert-Lewin),” Lampard said in Friday’s pre-match press conference.
“I haven’t had the benefit of having him for many league games – just three starts for us – and he was playing short of fitness. Not short, short, but a striker wants and needs to be 100 per cent. We’ve worked well, really closely with him over the past couple of weeks. Without putting unnecessary pressure on him, because it’s tough to be a striker with expectation, he’s in a really good place.
“Fabian Delph, we’re hoping, is another week or so [away from returning] but it’s been a slightly complicated injury. It will be a big plus for us to have him in the squad, particularly in that area where we do have some issues.
“Andros Townsend, as we know, is a long-term injury. We all feel a lot for him there. It’s a difficult time for Andros but we’ll support him and he’ll be back strong, because of the lad he is.
“Yerry should be, hopefully, back with us within the next couple of weeks. He is a big player for us – an international player, a player of stature, a player with personality, a big personality in the dressing room. I knew that from before I came and I know that from being here now, even though, unfortunately, I’ve not had much on-pitch time to work with him.
“If you miss a player of that level, particularly in an area of the pitch where you want stability at centre-back, then it’s difficult.
“They bring you not just quality, but the right competition and they drive the team. In our position, centre-back is a crucial area. He’s been a big miss and when he does come back it’ll be a big bonus for us.”
West Ham will surely fancy their chances given Everton are without so many key first team players.
Let’s hope the boys are bang at it after most got a much-needed rest.