West Ham United are set to begin 2019 with a home fixture against Brighton and Hove Albion in the Premier League, with the Hammers faithful keen to start the new year with three points.
Irons manager Manuel Pellegrini could use the game as an opportunity to hand a debut to new signing Samir Nasri, who joined the club as a free-agent on Monday, according to BBC Sport.
The veteran Frenchman will add quality to the West Ham midfield, especially considering that Manuel Lanzini is out for the rest of the season and Jack Wilshere is very injury-prone.
Pablo Zabaleta could be set to return for the Hammers after recovering from illness but striker Javier Hernandez will not be available due to a hamstring strain.
The last time that the two sides met was in October and it was Brighton who went on to win 1-0 through a goal from Glenn Murray. West Ham will be the favourites for this game however and will hope three points will propel the club up the table.
Pellegrini’s Hammers side have won four out of the their last five Premier League games, while Brighton’s victory over Everton last time our broke a four-game winless streak.
The Seagulls will also have to make do without the services of goalkeeper Mat Ryan, who is an ever-present key player for them, as well as winger Alireza Jahanbakhsh. The duo are currently on international duty at the Asian Cup.
West Ham could move as high as eighth with victory and the home faithful will expect three points against Chris Hughton’s men.