West Ham manager Sam Allardyce knows his club will have plenty of support coming from Liverpool when they travel to Etihad Stadium to face Manchester City. The Reds' only chance of winning the Premier League title comes if the Hammers pull off the upset.
Sky Sports passed along comments from Allardyce about the championship race. The one thing that stands out more than anything else for him is the quest of Steven Gerrard to capture the league title with the only club he's ever known:
From a neutral's point of view I think everybody would like to see Liverpool win it, and from a personal point of view I'd like to see Steven Gerrard win it.
It's the last thing for him which he hasn't quite achieved at Liverpool. He's been a one club man all his life. Obviously they've let it slip out of their hands. They had it to take, but they've now left it in the hands of Manchester City.
West Ham face an incredibly difficult test, however.
City have been dominant at home all season. They have won 16 of 18 games on home soil this term, losing only once, against Chelsea. They have also notched 61 goals, conceding only 13 while playing in front of their supporters, one of the main reasons they are closing in on the title.
By contrast, the Hammers sports a lackluster 4-4-10 record away from home. They only scored 15 goals in those 18 matches, which makes it hard to believe they will have the firepower necessary to keep pace with the league-leading Sky Blues attack.
Paul Carr of ESPN notes the outlet's Soccer Power Index doesn't like the chances of Liverpool coming back to win the title with help from West Ham:
Despite the long odds, all Liverpool can do is make sure they bounce back from a pair of disappointing results against Chelsea and Crystal Palace to earn all three points against Newcastle. Otherwise, the West Ham upset bid would be meaningless.
The Hammers' best bet would be loading up defensively. Play with as many players behind the ball as possible for most of the match with the hope of limiting City's scoring chances. They can then try to strike on the counterattack, and through set-pieces.
As the ESPN odds show, Liverpool need nothing short of a miracle to capture the Premier League trophy after letting a lead slip away. If things don't fall their way on Sunday, they will undoubtedly look back at those missed opportunities.
But for now they must keep hope alive with the knowledge Allardyce and West Ham are seeking to play the role of spoiler to help out Gerrard and Co.
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