Michael Owen has suggested that West Ham will succumb to another defeat when they face Burnley on Saturday.
The Hammers are winless in five in the Premier League, but still go into the game just three points off sixth.
But Owen believes they will continue their poor run against the Clarets, who themselves are in a slump.
Speaking to Bet Victor, he said: “Burnley have lost their last three and were not themselves at Bramall Lane on Saturday.
“I expect them to bounce back, however, against a West Ham side who have picked up just a solitary point from their last four league games against Newcastle, Sheffield United, Everton and Crystal Palace with three of those fixtures at home.
“Both teams begin the weekend in the bottom half of the table, but I think it will be the Clarets who keep the points from a close, nervous game with few opportunities.”
The Hammers are actually in a relatively decent position in the league. Despite their recent slump in form, and despite the fact that they lie 13th in the Premier League table, Manuel Pellegrini’s men are still within spitting distance of that fabled sixth spot, and the European football it would bring them. Saturday’s match against Burnley looks like a real must-win though. Not only are Sean Dyche’s side one place and one point behind the Irons, but they are currently on a run of three defeats themselves. If West Ham lose to them, it will mean they drop down the table, massively relieve the pressure on a rival club, and registered a sixth consecutive game without a win. For a team with the talent they possess, that seems like an unthinkable prospect, and Pellegrini could be in deep water if it happens.