Brian Dear: The cat is well and truly amongst the pigeons

West Ham United v Tottenham Hotspur – London Stadium – Premier League – Saturday 12:30pm

West Ham United v Tottenham Hotspur – Preview:

BRIAN DEAR insisted that much of the focus has been switched away from out of sorts West Ham United following the sacking of Mauricio Pochettino and subsequent appointment of Jose Mourinho at chief rivals, and this weekend’s opponents, Tottenham Hotspur.

Hammers and Spurs go head-to-head in the Premier League on Saturday lunchtime with both sides currently hugely under-performing and producing relegation form, recording just six league victories between them to date.

And whilst Hammers boss, Manuel Pellegrini, remains under pressure, Spurs have wielded the axe in a bid to kickstart their flagging campaign.

“It’ll be interesting to see which Tottenham turn up at the London Stadium – the cat is well and truly amongst the pigeons now,” Dear told Yellow Sport.

“Both teams have performed poorly of late – something the players need to take some responsibility for as well. Mourinho will now insist on improvement at Tottenham. He will make them difficult to beat and perhaps give them another dimension and energy – Pellegrini needs to demand the same from West Ham.

“The focus is now largely on Mourinho and Spurs. However, my interest as a former player and as a supporter is on West Ham. Make no mistake, there is still huge pressure on us because we are slipping towards the relegation zone.

Dear was clearly concerned over the Hammers recent form. A run of six games without a victory has seen the London Stadium outfit slip within five points of the relegation zone.

“Our exciting players simply aren’t creating chances, leaving Sebastien Haller isolated upfront,” Dear continued.

Defensively, we have looked very fragile since Lukasz Fabianski’s injury. The backline doesn’t seem to have any confidence in Roberto and now question marks are hanging over Pellegrini.

“This is a derby. We have to sort it out, and quickly, or this could be a difficult day for West Ham and none of the supporters wants to see that.

Dear added: “Recent performances have been unacceptable from West Ham. If these players can’t get charged up to face Spurs, you need to question why they are at the club in the first place?

“If I’m honest, I think Spurs now start this game as favourites although these games are usually quite tight and I think we can take something from it. It’s up to this team to pull out the stops and prove they are much better than their recent record suggests.”

West Ham United v Tottenham Hotspur – Head to head:

West Ham United won: 64
Drawn: 52
Tottenham Hotspur won: 96

West Ham United v Tottenham Hotspur – Last five meetings (all competitions):

October 25, 2017 – League Cup
Tottenham Hotspur 2-3 West Ham United

January 4, 2018 – Premier League
Tottenham Hotspur 1-1 West Ham United

October 20, 2018 – Premier League
West Ham United 0-1 Tottenham Hotspur

October 31, 2018 – League Cup
West Ham United 1-3 Tottenham Hotspur

April 27, 2019 – Premier League
Tottenham Hotspur 0-1 West Ham United

Brian Dear’s prediction: West Ham United 1-1 Tottenham Hotspur
Jeevesie’s prediction: West Ham United 1-2 Tottenham Hotspur

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Brian Jeeves

Email: [email protected]