Home Breaking News Areola and Vlasic to start, Soucek decision – West Ham predicted team...

Areola and Vlasic to start, Soucek decision – West Ham predicted team vs Genk in Europa League

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West Ham manager David Moyes is expected to make a number of changes to his team for the clash with Genk on Thursday evening at the London Stadium.

The Hammers go into the match top of Group H after back-to-back 2-0 wins in the opening two fixtures against Dinamo Zagreb and Rapid Vienna.

The manager is keen to get another three points this evening to ensure his team stays in contention for European football after Christmas. “It would be great if we could top the group,” Moyes said. “But trying to make sure we get through is the main aim at the moment.”

Moyes confirmed that Nikola Vlasic will start the match against Genk and revealed that Tomas Soucek is fit for selection after seeing a plastic surgeon to treat a facial injury picked up versus Everton.

However, Moyes did suggest Soucek may be handed a rest after a busy time for both club and country of late.

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Alex Kral is unavailable for selection following a positive Covid-19 test and Vladimir Coufal is still out with a groin injury.

Mark Noble and Ryan Fredericks were absent from the matchday squad that triumphed over Everton but both men are back in contention after taking part in full first-team training this week.

Alphonse Areola is set to continue in goal in Europe with Lukasz Fabianski the Premier League No.1. Ahead of the goalkeeper Issa Diop and Craig Dawson are expected to replace first-team regulars Angelo Ogbonna and Kurt Zouma for this evening’s match.

With Coufal out and Fredericks only recently back in training Ben Johnson is set for another start at right-back with Scotland U21 international Harrison Ashby likely to be named amongst the substitutes.

The choice at left-back is between regular starter Aaron Cresswell and Arthur Masuaku, with the DR Congo international likely to get the nod this evening.

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Noble’s return from a hip injury means the club captain will likely lead his team out once more with Moyes looking to give Soucek a rest ahead of the London derby against Spurs on Sunday. Declan Rice is predicted to partner Noble in the middle of the park.

Of the attacking quartet, only Vlasic is guaranteed a start with Moyes remaining guarded about his other attacking options. Said Benrahma, Pablo Fornals and Michail Antonio are likely to be given a rest for the evening with Jarrod Bowen expected to lead the line.

Behind Bowen, Andriy Yarmolenko, Manuel Lanzini and Vlasic will provide the creativity needed to break down an out-of-form Genk team.

Predicted West Ham XI – Areola; Johnson, Diop, Dawson, Masuaku; Noble, Rice; Vlasic, Lanzini, Yarmolenko, Bowen

https://www.football.london/west-ham-united-fc/news/west-ham-genk-predicted-team-21920421