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West Ham United v Sheffield United – Premier League – London Stadium – Mondy 6pm – Preview
Brian Dear is expecting to see West Ham United return to winnings ways, but insisted they will need to display more attacking intent to see off a Sheffield United side that has notably improved of late.
A goalless Premier League draw at Fulham was followed by a 1-0 Emirates FA Cup fifth-round exit at Manchester United. The Hammers rarely threatening in either contest.
“We need to be on the front foot, Dear told Yellow Sport.
“I know Michail Antonio is important to us and it’s a blow when he is missing, but we still have players that are more than capable of getting goals. They need to step up because we are not in a position, squad-wise, to become reliant on one player.
“We can all acknowledge that there has been an improvement this season. But I think talking about European football suggests we are trying to run before we can walk.
“Development comes in stages. At the start of this season, West Ham was amongst the favourites to be relegated. I think we need to become regulars in the top ten before we can think of the next step and that could be two or three seasons away.
“The last two performances have suggested there’s still plenty to do. David Moyes knows that. Hopefully, he will be able to continue shaping a squad suited to the next stage of our progression.”
Looking ahead to Sheffield United’s trip to the London Stadium, Dear added: “They’ve won two of their last four matches. Tails are up and they will fancy themselves in a scrap to get away from the bottom.
“But they are still on the bottom. We won up there and should be confident of doing the double. When you play teams like Sheffield United, you have to dig deep because they battle. But I think we have enough quality to win the game.
“Ultimately, whether the aim is Europe or a top-half finish, Sheffield United at home is a match we should be targeting. I fully expect that to be the case on Monday evening.”
Brian Dear’s prediction: West Ham United 3-1 Sheffield United
Jeevesie’s prediction: West Ham United 1-0 Sheffield United