It is crunch time at the Academy of football ahead of this evening's televised derby clash against Chelsea , key players missing in all areas and an alarming surfeit of goals scored do not bode well for a successful outcome, but after all this is West Ham, top flight football's perennial under and over achievers. . West Ham United: Jaaskelainen, Demel, O'Brien, Collins, Tomkins, Noble, Morrison, Collison, J.Cole, Downing, Nolan (c)
Subs: Adrian, McCartney, Jarvis, Maiga, Taylor, Diame, C.Cole
Chelsea: Cech, Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry (c), Azpilicueta, Mikel, Ramires, Lampard, Oscar, Hazard, Eto'o
Subs: Schwarzer, A.Cole, Essien, Mata, Schurrle, Ba, Willian
In an otherwise disappointing start to the season, one of the few positives to have emerged is the way some of the younger players have started to make an impression. Their inclusion in the first team squad has been due to injuries, but it appears that the penny has finally dropped and Sam Allardyce seems set to embrace the 'blooding' of the likes of Olly Lee and Leo Chambers. When Alex Ferguson introduced David Beckham and Paul Scholes to his first team, the move was met with some derision by the Old Trafford faithful and the rest of the Premier League managers, but who had the last laugh?
Norwich City: Ruddy, Martin (c), Turner, R.Bennett, Olsson, Snodgrass, Howson, Fer, Pilkington, Hooper, Elmander
Subs: Bunn, Whittaker, Bassong, Johnson, Redmond, Hoolahan, Becchio
West Ham United: Jaaskelainen, Demel, Collins, Tomkins, Rat, Noble, Nolan (c), Collison, Downing, J.Cole, Morrison
Subs: Adrian, O'Brien, McCartney, Maiga, Jarvis, Diame, C.Cole
The news that West Ham United had re-signed Carlton Cole certainly drew a mixed reaction from Hammers fans, with some saying they are happy to have him back, while others have accused Sam Allardyce of taking a backward step. Cole’s form in front of goal for the Hammers in the Premier League hardly makes for pretty reading, the ‘striker’ having scored twice last season in the top flight.