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Chelsea vs. West Ham: Team News, Live Stream, TV Info, Ticket News

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 24:  Manuel Lanzini of West Ham United and Nemanja Matic of Chelsea compete for the ball during the Barclays Premier League match between West Ham United and Chelsea at Boleyn Ground on October 24, 2015 in London, England.  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
Clive Rose/Getty Images
Garry HayesFeatured ColumnistMarch 19, 2016

Guus Hiddink says he expects West Ham United to give Chelsea a tough afternoon when they visit Stamford Bridge on Saturday.

The Hammers are flying high in fifth place in the Premier League, nine points ahead of Chelsea as they chase a spot in Europe for next season in either the Champions League or Europa League.

Slaven Bilic's side also remain in the draw for the semi-final of the FA Cup after they drew 1-1 against Manchester United last week to earn a replay.

Meanwhile, Chelsea's season is as good as over. In the space of a few days last week, they were eliminated from the Champions League and FA Cup, with only their remaining nine league games left to play.

With the gap between them and a top-four finish looking too much to close at this late stage of the season, it seems Hiddink's side have nothing but pride left to play for.

"I expect a tough match because [West Ham] are doing very well at home and away," Hiddink said on Friday.

COBHAM, ENGLAND - MARCH 15: Manager of Chelsea, Guus Hiddink watches the action during the UEFA Youth League quarter final match between Chelsea and Ajax at Chelsea Training Ground on March 15, 2016 in Cobham, England. (Photo by Tom Dulat/Getty Images).
Tom Dulat/Getty Images

"They are a courageous team who are fast on the counter-attack. They have skilful players, they are a nice team to watch. They are in the mood in fifth position, not just dreaming but maybe making fourth place come true. They’ve shown they can play and they have players who can be decisive at any minute."

With players like Dimitri Payet, the Hammers have enjoyed a remarkable season, but Hiddink says manager Bilic should also take many of the plaudits for what they have achieved thus far.

"He’s a very stable, very consistent manager," added Chelsea's interim boss. "We've had some encounters at international and club level. He's a very driven coach, I've known him many years.

"There is a mutual respect; when we see each other, we talk. Being a young manager, he's already done many good things."

Hiddink will hope one of those many good things doesn't include picking up three points at Stamford Bridge, where West Ham haven't won since 2002.

 

Match Details

Date: Saturday, March 19

Time: 3 p.m. GMT/11 a.m. ET

Venue: Stamford Bridge, London

TV Info: Match of the Day, BBC1, 10.30pm (UK only)/NBC Sports (U.S. only)

Live Stream: No live UK stream/NBCSN (U.S. only)

 

Last 5 Games

Chelsea
Feb. 27 Southampton 1-2 Chelsea
Mar. 1 Norwich City 1-2 Chelsea
Mar. 5 Chelsea 1-1 Stoke City
Mar. 9 Chelsea 1-2 Paris Saint-Germain
Mar. 12Everton 2-0 Chelsea
Chelsea FC
West Ham United
Feb. 21Blackburn Rovers 1-5 West Ham United
Feb. 27West Ham United 1-0 Sunderland
Mar. 2West Ham United 1-0 Tottenham Hotspur
Mar. 5Everton 2-3 West Ham United
Mar. 13Manchester United 1-1 West Ham United
West Ham United FC

 

Predicted Lineups

Chelsea's Brazilian-born Spanish striker Diego Costa (2nd R) and Everton's English midfielder Gareth Barry clash in the incident leading to Costa's second yellow card during the English FA cup quarter-final football match between Everton and Chelsea at Go
PAUL ELLIS/Getty Images

Diego Costa starts his two-match suspension for this game after he was sent off against Everton in Chelsea's FA Cup defeat last week. That means Bertrand Traore, Loic Remy and Alexandre Pato will be fighting it out to lead the line for Chelsea.

The big news elsewhere is that John Terry should start after missing the past month with a hamstring injury, but Eden Hazard misses out.

West Ham will be without defensive trio Carl Jenkinson, James Tomkins and James Collins.

Chelsea (4-2-3-1): Courtois; Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta; Mikel, Fabregas; Willian, Oscar, Pedro; Traore

West Ham United (4-3-3): Adrian; Byram, Reid, Ogbonna, Cresswell; Noble, Kouyate, Lanzini; Antonio, Carroll, Payet

 

Key Players

John Obi Mikel

Chelsea's Nigerian midfielder John Obi Mikel (L) vies with Everton's Scottish-born Irish midfielder James McCarthy during the English FA cup quarter-final football match between Everton and Chelsea at Goodison Park in Liverpool, north west England on Marc
PAUL ELLIS/Getty Images

It says much about Chelsea's campaign that John Obi Mikel is now being regarded as a star man in their side. It's not because Mikel isn't worthy of such status but more down to the fact his performances have stood out after a lack of form from other key players.

Now Chelsea are relying on the Nigerian to stop them losing games when the perspective should be different; Chelsea should be looking to other players to win them matches.

It's why Mikel is going to be vital against West Ham on Saturday. He needs to be at his best to shut down a fluid West Ham attack—cutting off the supply lines to Payet especially.

Mikel has shown his expertise at doing that since Christmas, and a repeat of that form will go a long way to getting Chelsea a result they need on Saturday.

 

Dimitri Payet

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - MARCH 05:  Dimitri Payet (L) of West Ham United celebrates the win after the Barclays Premier League match between Everton and West Ham United at Goodison Park on March 5, 2016 in Liverpool, England.  (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Ima
Gareth Copley/Getty Images

If Payet's on form, West Ham are on form. We've seen proof of that since Payet returned from injury in January. Before then, the Hammers had won just once in the seven matches he missed, but now they're back to winning ways and in contention for a Champions League spot.

It's been an incredible season for the east Londoners, who have punched well above their weight. A huge reason for that has been down to the flair Payet has added, with his influence stretching across this entire side.

The Frenchman is infectious, with his performances helping lift those around him. It means Chelsea must stop him on Saturday if they're to prevent the Hammers claiming a first win at Stamford Bridge in almost 15 seasons.

 

Ticket Information

For ticket information on all Premier League games, visit the official site or go to the ticket page on Chelsea's official website. Secondary ticket information for Chelsea can be found here.

 

Prediction

Chelsea 3-1 West Ham United

 

Odds

Home Win: -182

Away Win: +500

Draw: +300

First Goalscorer: Dimitri Payet (10/1)

Odds via Odds Shark and Oddschecker

 

Garry Hayes is Bleacher Report's lead Chelsea correspondent. All quotes were obtained firsthand unless otherwise noted. Follow him on Twitter @garryhayes

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