West Ham find themselves second from bottom in the current Premier League form table, following just one win in their last six outings. West Ham could be boosted by the return of striker Andy Carroll who could be back on the bench on Saturday. The on-loan striker has been out since twisting his knee against Manchester United at the end of November but could be included by Allardyce. Mark Noble has also recovered from a calf problem and Joe Cole, who was rested for Wednesday’s FA Cup defeat at Old Trafford, should also return to face the R’s. James Collins and Joey O’Brien (both hamstring) face late fitness tests, while George McCartney is ruled out (knee). New signing Wellington Paulista should be in the squad.
Q.P.R. manager Harry Redknapp will take charge of his 100th London derby on Saturday when he returns to former club West Ham United. Rangers will be hoping to continue their unbeaten start to 2013 that has seen them claim four points against fellow Londoners Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur. New signing Loic Remy looks set to make his debut, whilst David Hoilett remains sidelined as a result of the hamstring injury sustained against Chelsea. Bobby Zamora is not yet ready to be included in the matchday squad as he continues his rehabilitation from a leg injury, and Andy Johnson is out for the season. Samba Diakite is at the Africa Cup of Nations, whilst Esteban Granero and Armand Traore remain injury doubts.
- Joe Cole – Has been excellent so far for West Ham – their key player in the 2 games he has played and is a vital creative spark in a team lacking goals.
- Jussi Jaaskelainen – Makes several good saves pretty much every game, if he concentrates throughout 90 minutes he is difficult to beat.
- Mohamed Diame – Looked slightly short of match fitness in midweek but still had a tidy game, if on form can drive the team forwards and leads by example.
Ryan Nelson – May be his last game before managing Toronto, his experience and organisation at the back is crucial in each game for the relegation strugglers.
- Adel Taarabt – The talented playmaker has the tools in his locker to win any football match, on his day almost unstoppable and will be looking forward to linking with Remy.
- Julio Cesar – Has shown his critics what he is made of in recent weeks, pulling off a series of outstanding stops. Can be an important factor if Q.P.R. are to pull off the great escape.
Line ups (predicted):
West Ham (4-2-3-1): Jaaskelainen, Spence, Reid, Tomkins, Potts, Diame, Noble, Jarvis, Nolan, J Cole, Chamakh.
Q.P.R. (4-3-3): Cesar, Onouha, Nelson, Hill, Fabio, M’Bia, Derry, Park, Taarabt, Mackie, Remy.
Prediction: Tough game to call, West Ham’s home form has generally been ok but have struggled to score of late, whereas Q.P.R. have £8 million man Loic Remy to add to their recent upturn in form. The Harry Redknapp factor will give Q.P.R. a vital away win here. 0-1
Where To Watch Online: West Ham vs. QPR854913