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Everton at West Ham: Match Preview

Can the Toffees manage a repeat of the sensational attacking performance that saw off Sunderland last week?

Dan Mullan/Getty Images

Everton travel to West Ham on Saturday, hoping to continue the form that defeated Sunderland last week. With the supposedly 'easier' run of fixtures now in full flow, it is important that the Blues build up some momentum over the next few weeks.

The Opposition

Fresh off the back of a comprehensive defeat at the hands of Watford, the Toffees will have to be wary of a backlash from the Hammers.

Winston Reid and Angelo Ogbonna return from injury for manager Slaven Bilic, who himself had an injury hit time at Goodison Park. However,  Diafra Sakho is still on the sidelines with a thigh strain and James Collins is suspended.

Everton will be aware of what the East Londoners can do, with the opposition currently sitting in 6th place. They have already beaten Chelsea, Manchester City, Liverpool, and Arsenal this season.

Team News

Bryan Oviedo is out for three weeks after pulling up against Sunderland, and Leighton Baines is still not ready to return to the match day squad.

Muhamed Besic has been named in Bosnia's squad recently, so may be close to a return though, and Tom Cleverley is ready to play for the first time since August.

The Final Word

The counter-attacking football that was on display against Sunderland may need to be repeated at the Boleyn Ground, with West Ham having already shown how dangerous they can be if allowed to counter themselves. As mentioned earlier, they have already taken several weighty scalps this season.

Brendan Galloway should return to the side, after being surprisingly left out last time round. It will be yet another test of the youngster's abilities, with the likes of Dimitri Payet, Victor Moses, and Manuel Lanzini sure to give a stern examination. The new centre-back pairing of John Stones and Ramiro Funes Mori will also have to be strong against Andy Carroll and Enner Valencia.

With this being one of the games that the team will surely need to win if they are going to challenge for the European places this season, it is important that they put in a good performance. If the attacking display from last weekend can be repeated with a bit more defensive solidity partnered with it, then there is no reason why this can't be so.

Everton predicted line-up: Howard, Coleman, Galloway, Stones, Funes Mori, Barry, McCarthy, Barkley, Deulofeu, Kone, Lukaku.