West Ham United will be looking to make it four successive wins in the Premier League when they go to the North East to take on Sunderland.
For the hosts, last time out against Liverpool was further evidence that they have been very hard to beat this season in the main, as they frustrated the Reds throughout. However, manager Gustavo Poyet was left to lament a lack of goals as his side played out their ninth draw already in the league.
The Uruguayan did at least receive a boost in week by securing the long-term future of striker Connor Wickham, whose contract was set to expire next summer. This year he has been the subject of a bid from Saturday’s opponents.
When another of West Ham’s previous targets Wilfried Bony put Swansea City ahead totally against the run of play at Upton Park on Sunday, it looked set to be a frustrating afternoon for the East London club, but Andy Carroll announced his return from injury by scoring a double to inspire another fine win.
Diafra Sakho put the icing on the cake late on with the third, which lifted them back into the top four, and although that might be too lofty a long-term goal, a top-half finish should be the aim from here.
Sunderland are likely to be without Emanuele Giaccherini and Billy Jones again for this clash, while Patrick van Aanholt is a long-term absentee.
Carl Jenkinson picked up an injury late on against Swansea be should be fit enough to take his place in the West Ham starting XI, and captain Mark Noble has an outside chance of joining him.
See what the expert tipsters at OLBG are tipping on Sunderland