West Ham v Fulham: the psychology and the predictions

This has not been a good year for West Ham – indeed it was not a good end to the old year either.

Among the low points there was the end of the year defeat to Burnley, the FA Cup trauma against AFC Wimbledon, and now five games without a win.

30 Dec 2018 Burnley v West Ham United L 2-0
02 Jan 2019 West Ham United v Brighton and Hove Albion D 2-2
05 Jan 2019 West Ham United v Birmingham City FAC W 2-0
12 Jan 2019 West Ham United v Arsenal W 1-0
19 Jan 2019 AFC Bournemouth v West Ham United L 2-0
26 Jan 2019 AFC Wimbledon v West Ham United FAC L 4-2
29 Jan 2019 Wolverhampton Wanderers v West Ham United L 3-0
04 Feb 2019 West Ham United v Liverpool D 1-1
09 Feb 2019 Crystal Palace v West Ham United D 1-1

Normally comparing Fulham with any other team, Fulham come off worst, but not in this case…

29 Dec 2018 Fulham v Huddersfield Town W 1-0
01 Jan 2019 Arsenal v Fulham L 4-1
06 Jan 2019 Fulham v Oldham Athletic FAC L 1-2
12 Jan 2019 Burnley v Fulham L 2-1
20 Jan 2019 Fulham v Tottenham Hotspur L 1-2
29 Jan 2019 Fulham v Brighton and Hove Albion W 4-2
02 Feb 2019 Crystal Palace v Fulham L 2-0
09 Feb 2019 Fulham v Manchester United L 0-3

Fulham across the same period also have two wins – beating Huddersfield (who seem to find it impossible to beat anyone) and Brighton (which was more of a surprise).  But otherwise it is defeats all the way.

Fulham of course are still relegation favourites however while West Ham are solidly mid-table.  It would take a continuing collapse in confidence for West Ham to slip below 12th position – but a defeat in this game could well give them that dark feeling.

Team P W D L F A GD Pts
10 West Ham United 26 9 6 11 32 39 -7 33
11 AFC Bournemouth 26 10 3 13 37 47 -10 33
12 Leicester City 26 9 5 12 31 34 -3 32
13 Crystal Palace 26 7 6 13 27 34 -7 27
14 Brighton and Hove Albion 26 7 6 13 28 39 -11 27
15 Burnley 26 7 6 13 29 47 -18 27
16 Newcastle United 26 6 7 13 22 34 -12 25
17 Cardiff City 26 7 4 15 24 47 -23 25
18 Southampton 26 5 9 12 28 44 -16 24
19 Fulham 26 4 5 17 25 58 -33 17
20 Huddersfield Town 26 2 5 19 14 48 -34 11

Looking at the home only games West Ham are not that impressive

Home games only

11 Brighton and Hove Albion 13 5 4 4 16 15 1 19
12 West Ham United 13 5 3 5 18 19 -1 18
13 Cardiff City 13 5 2 6 15 23 -8 17
14 Fulham 13 4 3 6 17 26 -9 15

Five wins and five defeats at home and a goal difference at the “London Stadium” of minus one is not impressive for a club that seem to start each season with the owners suggesting they have major aspirations.

But they are playing Fulham, a team whose away record is beyond catastrophic

Away games only

17 Brighton and Hove Albion 13 2 2 9 12 24 -12 8
18 Cardiff City 13 2 2 9 9 24 -15 8
19 Huddersfield Town 12 1 3 8 8 26 -18 6
20 Fulham 13 0 2 11 8 32 -24 2

No wins, two draws.  The Fulham team psychologist will have to perform miracles in order to get the players of Fulham to believe that they can get their first away win.  They will need luck, and a collapse in belief by WHU.  It could happen, but a 2-0 win to WHU seems more likely.

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