Team: West Ham United
Manager: Sam Allardyce
Upsides: Sam Allardyce made all of his moves early in the transfer market, and is reportedly very content. ‘This has been one of the quietest summers I’ve had,’ he told talkSPORT. ‘We have done some good business. Andy Carroll has come in, we’ve got a new goalkeeper in Adrian from Real Betis, who seems to be settling in very well, and Razvan Rat will help strengthen the defence.’ All three should increase the quality of the first XI, whilst Whitehead is definitely one for the future. There is probably need for another striker on the books, but Hammers fans should be quietly confident that last year’s 10th place can be improved upon.
Downsides: Tactically, West Ham are pretty limited. Big Sam plays a very predictable style of football. There is a real chance that he may be out manoeuvred by some of the more progressive managers in the competition. But would you bet against him over the course of 38 games?
Ins: Andy Carroll (FC Liverpool), Razvan Rat (Shakhtar Donetsk), Adrian (Real Betis Balompie), Daniel Whitehead (Stockport County)
Outs: Carlton Cole (Free), Robert Hall (Bolton Wanderers), Gary O’Neil (Free)
The Blog FC Predicts: 8th. Dour but effective. Expect Andy Carroll to have a big season.
How wrong are we? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!