Chris Sutton anticipates a closely contested match between Sheffield United and West Ham United when David Moyes’ team travels to Bramall Lane on January 21.
The ex-Chelsea striker suggests that the Hammers might still be grappling with the repercussions of their FA Cup loss to Bristol City. Nevertheless, Sutton doesn’t foresee another defeat for them, projecting a final score of 1-1.
Sutton emphasised that both teams are unlikely to prioritise possession, suggesting that this could result in a cautious and closely contested match. He explained in his BBC Sport predictions column: “Neither side have a possession-based style of play, so they won’t particularly want the ball. It is going to be tight, and it’s got draw written all over it.”
Sheffield United enter the match following a convincing 4-0 cup victory against Gillingham. Despite the lower standard of opposition, they will seek to draw confidence from their goal-scoring success.
On the flip side, the FA Cup was a significant letdown for the Hammers, as they exited the competition at the earliest stage, likely feeling they had a shot at winning it. Now, they must regroup and aim to secure three points in the Premier League, and they will have to do this without several key attacking players.
My opinion on Sheffield United vs West Ham
It’s not often I agree with anything Chris Sutton says but on this occasion I think he may be correct. I do think it has the potential to be a scrappy game given that the Blades have only played once in about three weeks, and some players were rested for the FA Cup clash. While this long break is good for players that were lacking fitness, there could be some rustiness out there on Sunday.
To add, West Ham could be forced into playing fringe players and youngsters in attacking positions so they may be tentative, thus impacting the flow of the game.