West Ham v Leicester Match Preview Part 2

Last updated : 11 January 2002 By Mike Reich
Carrick - Still out injured
When West Ham played Leicester at Upton Park last season, we lost 1-0 following Igor Stimac's sending off, because of an innocuous challenge on Mrs Histrionics, Robbie 'Lily' Savage.

The Hammers see the return of Paolo di Canio - who according to the latest WestHammersFC poll, is worth far more than £3.5m to the Hammers - to the first team, after suspension and injury ruled him out of the last two games.

The midfield is likely to be stretched however, with Michael Carrick definitely ruled out with a knee injury, and Don Hutchison rated doubtful. The defence should remain unchanged from the side that beat Macclesfield last weekend, but Glenn is being forced into changing the midfield.

Up front he is faced with a dilemma: Jermain Defoe is bang on form at the moment, whilst Freddie Kanoute and Paolo are returning to the side - who does he pick?

All three would certainly make for an entertaining match: Joe Cole and Moncur in the centre of midfield, Trevor Sinclair wide on the right, Paolo di Canio on the left, and Freddie and Jermain up front.

I would expect Glenn to go for Laurent Courtois and John Moncur in midfield alongside Trev and Joey, with Paolo and Freddie up front. In that scenario, Jermain would start on the bench, but most likely see some action in the second half.

Also likely to start on the bench is new signing Vladimir Labant, who completed his transfer to Upton Park this morning.

Cole - Looking for a win
As for the result? Ask Joe Cole: "Everyone can beat anybody, you saw before Christmas that Leicester got a draw at Leeds.

"We can't be complacent now, we have got into the position on several occasions now that if we win a game we can move into the top half of the table, and we have let ourselves down.

"If we have learnt anything over the past few months it has to have been that we can not afford to let ourselves down against these teams."

So, that should be a win then.