The incredible Leicester City story rolled on last weekend with yet another win, but this is the Foxes’ hardest test for quite some time. They host an impressive West Ham who are still clinging on to hopes of a top four finish, but who might be fatigued after their FA Cup loss to Manchester United in midweek.
Leicester sit seven points clear at the top of the table, but people are still doubting whether the Foxes can actually pull off what would be a magical feat. The Foxes have only lost three games this season, with only one of those coming inside the King Power Stadium.
Three more wins would guarantee them the title and Leicester have already beaten West Ham this season. The King Power will be bouncing for this tie and manager Claudio Ranieri will be hoping such support can carry his side over the line.
Striker Jamie Vardy has rekindled his scoring ways, netting twice in their last game against Sunderland. The former non-league striker sits second in the division’s goalscoring charts, just one goal behind fellow England international Harry Kane.
The Hammers will have to cope with Leicester’s attacking flare whilst also contending with the best defence in the league. The Foxes have kept 14 clean sheets this season and have not conceded in their last five outings.
West Ham will have to recover quickly from their disappointing display in the FA Cup midweek. They looked flat and fatigued from their weekend fixture against Arsenal and won’t have much time to recover for this tie on Sunday.
A plus point for the Hammers is the return of Andy Carroll. The striker scored a superb hat-trick in their last league game and also assisted Tomkins’ header in the FA Cup, demonstrating his aerial power is something for Leicester defenders Wes Morgan and Robert Huth to be wary of.
Leicester have fielded the same team almost all season and that is unlikely to change for this weekend. Ranieri can pick from a full squad of healthy players, a testament to Leicester’s medical staff who have played a huge part in their team’s success this season.
West Ham will be without long-term absentee Carl Jenkinson for the tie, whilst forward Diafra Sakho is likely to miss the game with a knee injury.
Reports emerged this week that Sakho had fallen out with manager Slaven Bilic over the Croatian’s choice to play Carroll ahead of Senegalese striker.
But such suggestions were rubbished by the club and it now appears the forward is in fact injured as first stated.
League Positions: Leicester City – 1st (72 pts); West Ham – 6th (52 pts)
Form: Leicester City – DWWWWW; West Ham – WWWDDD
Previous Meeting: Leicester City 2-1 West Ham – September, 2015 (Capital One Cup)
Key Players: Leicester City – Jamie Vardy; West Ham – Andy Carroll
Shoot Says: Leicester City 1-0 West Ham