Paul Merson has made his West Ham vs Chelsea prediction based on someone who won’t even be playing on Sunday.
Both the Hammers and the Blues kicked off their respective campaigns with 1-1 draws last weekend.
So a win on Sunday for either club would represent a very solid start to the 2023/24 season.
Merson thinks one team will get all three points, but his reasoning for predicting that is a bizarre one…
Paul Merson makes West Ham vs Chelsea prediction based on someone who won’t be playing
Merson wrote his regular column for Sportskeeda ahead of the upcoming Premier League fixtures this weekend.
And the well-renowned pundit suggested that Reece James will have a key role to play in a 2-1 win for Chelsea:
“West Ham United did well last weekend against Bournemouth. They had to settle for a draw but they are a team that’s difficult to break down. I think Enzo Fernandez and Conor Gallagher played brilliantly against Liverpool. I also think Nicolas Jackson will be among the goals this season. However, if Chelsea are to make an impact and fight for a top 4 sport, they will rely heavily on Ben Chilwell and Reece James. Both of them need to stay fit and healthy throughout the season. The two wing-backs have got quality and they get up and down the pitch so well. I think Chelsea will cause West Ham problems on the counter-attack and I expect them to get all three points here. If they can win this game against the Hammers and beat Luton Town next week, that will be a solid start for Chelsea.”
Prediction: West Ham 1-2 Chelsea
Strange to say the least from Merson, considering the fact that Reece James is ruled out of Sunday’s game with a hamstring injury.
Maybe Merson forgot James was injured, or perhaps he wrote the column before the news regarding the Chelsea player’s injury broke. Who knows.
One thing I can guarantee you is that Reece James will not be causing us any problems on Sunday afternoon.
The West Ham vs Chelsea clash kicks off at 16:30 and can be seen live and exclusive on Sky Sports.