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Watford vs West Ham LIVE! Premier League match stream, latest score and goal updates today

West Ham are looking to finish what has been a magnificent year on a high note as they travel to Watford in the Premier League this afternoon.

The Hammers are in the midst of a slump, having won just one of their last eight matches in all competitions, but 2021 has been an unqualified success for David Moyes’ team, bringing a sixth-placed finish in the top-flight and qualification for Europe.

Moyes’ men have the knockout stages of the Europa League to look forward to in the New Year, but their more immediate concern will be getting back to winning way in the Premier League after a poor run of form that has seen them slip to sixth in the table, having been in the top four earlier in the campaign.

Watford had themselves been on a torrid run of four successive defeats but a raft of Covid postponements mean they have not played since December 10 and Claudio Ranieri must hope that they can use the break as a chance to reset, even if the disruption to training has been far from ideal.

Follow all the action LIVE with Standard Sport’s blog below…

Live updates

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Players out onto the pitch…. first time the Watford fans have seen their side walk out at Vicarage Road since December 4.

They’ve had a long time away from the action. How will it affect Claudio Ranieri’s side?

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Our man Jack Rosser is in position at Vicarage Road…

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The absent Declan Rice is watching on…

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Johnson, Noble, Antonio come in

West Ham, meanwhile, make four changes, including the suspended Declan Rice. Arthur Masuaku, Nikola Vlasic and Pablo Fornals are also not in David Moyes’ team.

Manuel Lanzini, Michail Antonio, Ben Johnson and Mark Noble are the quartet that come into the starting XI.

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Three changes for Watford

Watford have made three changes from the last time they played in a 2-1 defeat at Brentford on December 10.

William Troost-Ekong, Jeremy Ngakia and Tom Cleverley drop out of the matchday squad, with the former Manchester United midfielder sidelined with a minor hamstring strain.

Claudio Ranieri calls up Vincent Angelini and Kamil Conteh to the first-team squad for the first time as the Hornets continue to deal with Covid absences after a lengthy spell without matches.

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Watford team news

Watford XI: Bachmann, Femenía, Cathcart, Sierralta, Masina, Cucho Hernández, King, Sissoko, Kucka, Tufan, Dennis

Subs: Angelini, Morris, João Pedro, Louza, Gosling, Conteh, Fletcher, Sema

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West Ham team news

West Ham XI: Fabianski, Coufal, Dawson, Diop, Johnson, Noble, Soucek, Bowen, Lanzini, Benrahma, Antonio

Subs: Areola, Ashby, Fredeicks, Masuaku, Alese, Kral, Vlasic, Okoflex, Yarmolenko

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And we’ll have all the confirmed team news from Vicarage Road in about ten minutes’ time…

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Standard Sport prediction

It promises to be a tricky afternoon for West Ham, against a Watford team that are well-rested after having a number of matches postponed.

Ranieri’s side ran Chelsea and Man City close at home earlier in December, and will be confident of testing West Ham who are far from their best at the moment and will be without the midfield presence of Rice.

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West Ham team news

David Moyes will be without Declan Rice, in what is a big blow to the Hammers as they look to regain some form. The England midfielder was booked on Boxing Day against Southampton and misses out through suspension.

Kurt Zouma and Angelo Ogbonna are still out long-term, while there is still no certain return date for Aaron Cresswell. Michail Antonio is expected to return to the starting lineup.

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