West Ham host seventh place Everton on Saturday (3pm kick-off) knowing victory would all but clinch their spot in next season’s Premier League.
Slaven Bilic’s men looked set to be embroiled in a relegation dog-fight when they lost five successive league games from March to April, but a narrow 1-0 win over Swansea followed by a 2-2 draw at Sunderland last time out has moved them nine points clear of the drop with just five games remaining.
And should they get the three points against Ronald Koeman’s Toffees on Saturday, they could move to within a point of safety should third-bottom Swansea lose at home to Stoke.
However, it won’t be easy for the Hammers against the Merseyside outfit this weekend, as Koeman’s men are well-placed to clinch a spot in the Europa League next term.
The Toffees are seventh and 13 points clear of West Brom in eighth, and with sixth place a European spot due to Manchester United’s League Cup victory, and with the FA Cup spot likely to go to a side already qualified for European competition, seventh looks set to be a Europa League spot.
However, Everton may have even loftier ambitions given that they are level on points with sixth place Arsenal and seven behind Manchester City in fourth, although they’ll need a win in East London on Saturday to keep their faint Champions League hopes alive.
With both sides needing the points, it should be an interesting contest at the London Stadium, and Hammers boss Bilic may be forced into some changes given the vast amount of injuries he has in his squad.
Thus, here are THREE West Ham stars who deserve a chance against Everton on Saturday…