West Ham face Friday Night Football this evening as they host newly-promoted Brighton at the London Stadium, where Slaven Bilic’s side will be looking to rise up the standings by taking all three points.
The Hammers are currently level on points with Brighton this season, with both sides winning just two of their opening eight matches, but Bilic’s men will be frustrated after conceding a late goal last weekend to draw 1-1 with Burnley.
West Ham played the majority of that game with ten-men, losing Andy Carroll to a red card in the first-half, but impressed with their overall performance- even if they did fall short of taking all three points at Turf Moor.
In this early season encounter though, Sky Sports pundit Paul Merson is backing the Hammers to win tonight’s game by one goal– sealing a crucial win that would send West Ham flying up the Premier League standings.
“I watched West Ham the other week against Swansea, they fell over the line in the last minute. I look at Brighton, they play a certain way and will try hard not to be beaten, and will probably settle for a draw.”
“I saw Brighton at Watford, who had 10 men after no time, and Brighton still played a certain way. The longer the game goes on at 0-0, the more Brighton become favourites, because of the crowd, who will get restless that they’re not beating a newly-promoted side. But I see West Ham getting the goal before that.”
Victory for the Hammers would provide a huge boost ahead of a crucial run of games, which sees Bilic’s men face Tottenham in the Carabao Cup, Crystal Palace in the Premier League and then another huge league game against Liverpool.