West Ham United have received big billing from former Newcastle United hero Andy Cole ahead of Saturday’s crunch clash.
The sight of Andy Cole in the black and white stripes of Newcastle used to strike fear into Premier League teams.
But the Premier League’s third all-time leading goalscorer says it is West Ham doing that nowadays.
West Ham and Newcastle chasing very different objectives
The Hammers and Steve Bruce’s side are having very contrasting seasons.
While Newcastle are battling to stave off relegation, West Ham are enjoying their best season for 35 years under David Moyes.
The Irons are right in the mix for the Champions League places.
And West Ham can go third with victory over Newcastle in the lunchtime kick-off tomorrow.
Ahead of the game Cole, who scored 55 goals in 70 games for the Magpies, has absolutely raved about West Ham.
The former Newcastle star says he has never seen a Moyes side play like this West Ham team and has backed the east Londoners to make the Champions League (talkSPORT).
Cole the goal absolutely raves about West Ham and backs Hammers for Champions League
“I’ve never seen any David Moyes team play like this,” Cole told talkSPORT.
“I think that’s a testament to David Moyes, the players he’s brought in. I think bringing in Jesse (Lingard) as well has been a major, major coup for him.
“West Ham have been fantastic this season. And I’m starting to believe they’re got a genuine chance of finishing in the top four.”
High praise indeed from one of the greats of the English game.
But West Ham fans will know there is still plenty of work to do to secure European football.
Magpies will be no pushovers and Moyes has injury problems
Victory over Newcastle would be a significant step towards that goal, though.
Not only would it put West Ham up to third place until next Thursday at least.
But it would pile the pressure on both Leicester City and the chasing pack – with sides like the Foxes, Chelsea and Tottenham having big domestic and European cup distractions.
Newcastle will be no pushovers, though.
The Magpies beat Burnley 2-1 last time out and have several key players back and firing like Callum Wilson – who loves a goal against West Ham – and Allan Saint-Maximin.
Meanwhile Moyes is missing key stars such as Declan Rice, Michail Antonio and Aaron Cresswell.