By James Murray

19th Sep, 2023 | 5:10pm

Michail Antonio sets West Ham United up to fail after what he said ahead of game v Liverpool

Michail Antonio has set West Ham up to fail after making a bold Premier League prediction for this season.

Speaking on the Footballer’s Football Podcast on Monday (18 September), the Jamaican international said the Hammers would finish above Liverpool in the league ahead of the game at Anfield on Sunday (24 September).

But that seems an unlikely scenario to take place after the Irons picked up their first defeat of the season against Manchester City on Saturday, with Liverpool extending their unbeaten start to the campaign with a win over Wolves.

It doesn’t come as too much of a surprise to hear the 33-year-old forward throwing out a prediction of this nature as he has been pretty outspoken on previous occasions.

“I am backing myself over Liverpool,” he said on the podcast. “You know what, I think we are going to finish higher than Liverpool this season. I’m putting it out there.

“I watched the game [Wolves v Liverpool] because it was before our game and Wolves could have run away with it. They had quite a few opportunities. We’ve got them this weekend and it’s a six-pointer.”

Subscribe to Football Insider TV now

There is no harm in being confident and backing your teammates to go out and pull off a result, but this just feels like Antonio’s set them up for a potential failure.

While Liverpool are going through a revamp at the moment in time, they are still an excellent outfit and have top-quality players that have helped them start this season unbeaten.

The Jamaican’s comments have caused a bit of a stir on social media, with Reds fans mocking him and questioning why he believes the Hammers can finish higher in the table than their side.

That has only happened on two occasions throughout Premier League history, as the East Londoners have only ever finished above the Merseysiders during the 1998/99 and 2015/16 seasons.

There is certainly reason to be optimistic for West Ham this campaign after winning three of their first four matches and only suffering defeat to Man City.

They also took the lead in that game and went in ahead at half-time courtesy of a goal from James Ward-Prowse, but the Premier League champions just had too much after the break at the London Stadium.

Despite finishing outside of the Champions League places last season for just the second time under Jurgen Klopp, there will be every expectation that Liverpool will be in the top four come the end of the season.

That means the Irons would need to have an incredible season and finish in the Champions League spots for the first time in the Premier League.

It just feels incredibly unlikely given that we finished 14th in the league last season, even though the Europa Conference League success turned it into one of the best years in the club’s history.

Let’s be honest, Antonio really didn’t need to say it on a public platform, especially after some of his previous comments on the podcast have caused a bit of unrest.

It’s often refreshing to hear players talk so openly, but perhaps on this occasion, it would have been good to keep his thoughts in-house, rather than setting us up for a potential failure this week and at the end of the campaign.

In other West Ham news, one player was disrespectful to the club after what he did against Manchester City.