Paul Merson believes Liverpool’s kind run-in will make them favourites to finish in the top four ahead of the likes of West Ham and Chelsea.
The Sky Sports pundit says he was not impressed by the Hammers’ defeat to Newcastle last weekend, while he has doubts that Chelsea will score enough goals:
“Liverpool are looking like a threat again and I think they might just sneak into the top four now. They have a nice run of fixtures and the clubs above them are struggling. I think Liverpool are back in it.”
“I did the West Ham against Newcastle game for Sky and it couldn’t have been any more disastrous for the Hammers. An own goal, a sending off, a goalkeeping calamity – everything went wrong. Now, I don’t see them beating Chelsea this weekend. But I don’t see Chelsea blowing them away either.”
“Chelsea don’t concede goals under Thomas Tuchel but they don’t score many do they? They always give you a chance because they can’t kill you off, and Brighton almost made them pay the other night. I think Chelsea have a few more games like that in them yet this season – and it could open the door for Liverpool.”
It must be pointed out that, after Chelsea this evening, West Ham’s last five games are not the most difficult. They don’t play anyone in the top six, with matches against Burnley, Everton, Brighton, West Brom and Southampton.
Of course, injuries could play their part, with David Moyes having to deal with the significant loss of Declan Rice and the ongoing absence of Michail Antonio.
Still, with Liverpool having to travel to Manchester United next week, and Chelsea having Manchester City, Arsenal and Leicester to play after today’s game at the London Stadium, West Ham are still very much in the mix.