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West Ham vs Chelsea - Opposition Views


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Sean Whetstone and Dan Stephens were kind enough to answer a few questions ahead of the match on Saturday:

First how long have you been a Westham fan?

Sean- All my life! That is 44 years as I was born in a West Ham family. However I have to confess my brother is a Chelsea fan and was a season ticket holder until recently. I am a season ticket holder in Sir Trevor Brooking lower not far from the away supporters.

Dan- All my life, ever since i was a little kid!

What have you made of your start to the season?

Sean- After the dreadful Avram Grant season and relegation it is refreshing to have climbed as high as sixth so early in the season. However we are keeping our feet firmly on the ground and know bottom half of the table is more likely. I'll take 11th for our first season back!

Dan- We have had a very solid start to the season. Apart from the losses at Wigan and Swansea, we have been great.

What do you think your goal for the season is? Avoiding relegation? Or do you think you can challenge for Europa League?

Sean- Survival in the premiership has got to be goal number one, mid table obscurity is goal number two and nick a European place at the end of the season as an outside bet. A nice FA Cup run would be nice after getting a taste for the new Wembley last year.

Dan- I'm a realist, avoid relegation.

Do you consider Chelsea as rivals and why?

Sean- I guess the main reason is an old London derby in a East versus West mentality but also many of our best academy players has passed through your ranks also and all we get Carlton Cole in return ;-) There is also the old firm rivalry with the ICF & Chelsea Head hunters or Mile End Boys and Chelsea Shed Boys although most of both sides are now drawing their pensions.

Dan- I wouldn't consider Chelsea as a big rival, but definitely there is some rivalry there. Don't think our fans are too keen on Lampard!!

Chelsea has had a terrible two weeks, what did you make RDM's sacking and Benitez's appointment?

Sean- Shocking! Abramovich is like a spoilt child with Chelsea as his toy. I am not sure how much he cares about Chelsea but I rarely hear Chelsea fans say bad stuff about him. West Ham had a tradition and sticking with the same manager but this has also recently changed. Benitez should apologise to Chelsea fans for what he said in the past but after that I think fans should vent their anger at Abramovich who is the real villain in my opinion.

Dan- To sack him was a joke, he had done what he was brought in to do last year, and was rightly offered a contract. After a brilliant start, you lost a couple of games and now all of a sudden he's sacked. Benitez is a great manager, but i don't think he is the right man for Chelsea.

Who has been your best player so far and who should we look out for?

Sean- MoMo Diame has been a fantastic free transfer from Wigan. When he plays we play well. Nolan, Noble, Tomkins and Reid all deserve mentions too. Nolan has that canny intuition to get in goal scoring places un marked for simple tap ins so watch out for his chicken dance on Saturday.

Dan- Our best player this season has probably been Mark Noble, either him or our whole back line! It's hard to single out players when the whole team has performed so well.

If you could have one Chelsea player at Westham, who would it be?

Sean- Not Torres certainly although it would be amusing to put Carroll & Torres together for a laugh. We have enough hot and cold strikers thank you very much. I admire Eden Hazard so I'll take Hazard please.

Dan- I really like Hazard and Oscar, both brilliant players.

What is the most likely line-up and formation that Sam would put out?

Sean- Probably a 4-4-1-1or 4-5-1 formation Likely Line-up is Jaaskelainen, Demel, O'Brien, Reid, Tomkins, Diame, Nolan, Noble,Taylor, Maiga, Carroll

There is a chance Andy Carroll will fail a fitness test on his knee in which case Carlton Cole will be drafted in up front!

Dan- we will line up in a 4-2-3-1 with the same team that played against United on Wednesday apart from Noble (who was suspended) will come in for Tomkins in the midfield.

Finally, please predict the result.

Sean- You aren't scoring too many goals at the moment nor are we. I expect it to be a tight London derby with just 1 goal either way. I will put my neck out and say 1-0 to West Ham from a Mark Noble Penalty ;-)

Dan- For the 1st time in a very long time, i actually think we might get something against Chelsea. I think it will be a 1-1 draw.

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Apathy has taken over from Anger ,,,who cares any longer .... Benitez and Torres OUT

Nothing creates interest more than drama, in fact that is what 90% of TV shows are based on. I have rarely seen the forum as busy as it has been the past 10 days tbh.

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