West Ham United take on Everton this weekend knowing they may have to win to stay out of the bottom three.

The Hammers sit 16th going into the weekend’s matches, just one point off the relegation zone.

There are two big six-pointers elsewhere as fellow strugglers Brighton and Aston Villa go head-to-head while Bournemouth visit Norwich.

The Premier League table is starting to separate into three distinct groups.

And ahead of West Ham’s game against David Moyes’s old side Everton, they are staring at a relegation battle.

Photo by Arfa Griffiths West Ham United FC via Getty Images

Two big calls over Randolph and Antonio

A win can change everything but the Toffees arrive looking revitalised under Carlo Ancelotti.

The match is set against the back-drop of fan protests.

Read: Angry fan group Hammers United sends letter to owners David Sullivan and David Gold ahead of protest

But Moyes knows he must keep the focus on events unfolding on the pitch rather than off it.

The Scot must make some big calls for the game. He must decide whether to bring new signing Darren Randolph – who has had a long spell on the sidelines with injury – straight into the squad.

Given his recent injury problems, Randolph would most likely act as back-up to David Martin for the time being while Lukasz Fabianski recovers from his inflamed scar tissue.

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Moyes to make four changes for Everton clash

Moyes must also decide whether to risk including Michail Antonio in the squad with the possibility of using him from the bench.

He will make FOUR changes to the team for the match against Everton, though, after getting his starting XI all wrong in the defeat to Sheffield United last time out.

 

Martin starts in place of Fabianski despite the blunder which led to Sheffield United’s goal.

In defence the hugely inconsistent and cumbersome Fabian Balbuena makes way for Issa Diop.

Pablo Fornals has been West Ham’s best player over the last two months.

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Fornals and Snodgrass back in

But Moyes inexplicably dropped the Spaniard in favour of a 352 formation using the hapless Arthur Masuaku on the left and the ineffective Manuel Lanzini through the middle.

Fornals will come back into the side for Masuaku with West Ham reverting to a back four.

It says a lot about West Ham’s performance at Brammall Lane that Robert Snodgrass was their best player despite only featuring for the last 25 minutes.

Snodgrass set up several good chances for his teammates and looked to have scored a last gasp equaliser until the intervention of VAR.

Snodgrass comes back into the starting line-up in place of Lanzini who was poor again last time out.

Predicted West Ham starting XI vs Everton:

Martin, Zabaleta, Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Fornals, Rice, Noble, Snodgrass, Anderson, Haller.

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