View: Predicted West Ham XI vs Frankfurt
David Moyes has got a big decision to make for his West Ham team ahead of the Europa League semi-final first leg against Frankfurt.
Moyes heavily rotated the side against Chelsea at the weekend and admitted he had one eye on the tie, as they suffered a 1-0 defeat thanks to a late strike.
But with injuries in defence the manager must decide whether to stick with his five-at-the-back formation from the weekend or do something else for this game.
In goal Alphonse Areola will take his place in the starting lineup once again as the cup goalkeeper this season, putting in excellent performances throughout.
With Craig Dawson the only fit senior centre-back at the club it’s expected that Moyes will stick with the same defence that started against Chelsea.
Dawson will sit in the middle of the three centre-backs with Aaron Cresswell and Ben Johnson on either side of him, while Arthur Masuaku and Vladimir Coufal take up the wing-back roles.
That means Declan Rice should return to the starting line-up in his usual midfield role, replacing the captain Mark Noble in the team and taking the armband back in the process.
He should continue to partner Tomas Soucek, with both men given a little bit more license to get forward with the added protection behind them.
Manuel Lanzini should come into the side too just ahead of them in the number ten role, able to help out defensively with his energy in the midfield too and floating out wide where needed too to help create.
Up front, Moyes is likely to opt with a front two with his two top goalscorers this season together.
Michail Antonio has scored just one goal and registered four assists in 19 appearances in all competitions since New Year’s Day, but he remains the first-choice striker and his performances bring more than just numbers.
Alongside him will be Jarrod Bowen, who has returned from injury in great form with three goals in six appearances including one in each leg against Lyon in the quarter-finals.
Predicted West Ham XI v Frankfurt: Areola; Johnson, Dawson, Cresswell; Coufal, Rice, Soucek, Lanzini, Masuaku; Bowen, Antonio.
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