One game one point into the holiday programme and we welcome West Ham United to the Lane. Our current record against them is second to none they are without a win since the infamous end of season game in 2006 when most of our squad were suffering from overnight sickness. Unfortunately records like that eventually get broken so we’ll have to be at our best to make sure that this does not happen tomorrow.
Defoe was rested at Craven Cottage and I felt that to be a sensible decision. I think he will return for this game and it may be Crouch who drops to the bench to allow him back into the side. I also fancy Ledley to come in and replace Bassong who took a kick to the head that knocked him out cold at Fulham. This is the game we need him to play if we are choosing between this and Peterborough in the FA Cup.
Will Tommy come back in or will Jenas continue in central midfield? As it is a home game I fancy Tommy to get the start so that we benefit from his passing rather than tackling. And what of Luka? Is he ready for a first start since returning from his leg break? I think it will be tomorrow with Niko dropping to the bench.
For West Ham injury is the order of the day with Mark Noble joining Carlton Cole amongst others in the treatment room. They arrive fresh from victory over Portsmouth but always ready to give up a lead this season we should fancy our chances for a home win.
Biggest question is whether we can continue our run of clean sheets at the back? I’m hopeful that we can of Daws and Ledley link up like they did when they first partnered each other and if Gomes continues his form from Craven Cottage it will take something special to beat him.
Team: Gomes, Corluka, Dawson, King, Assou-Ekotto, Lennon, Palacios, Huddlestone, Modric, Keane, Defoe
Prediction: 3-0 as long as we keep our attention at the back right from the off.