Most people will know this fixture for all the wrong reasons, with both of these teams being featured in various football hooligan films. The rivalry there is certainly not exaggerated and with this being the first league clash between these two sides for many years, many people are anticipating a hugely exciting game at the New Den.
After only gaining promotion to the Championship last season, many people were hugely impressed in the manner that Millwall adjusted to the division. The Lions more than held their own and even pushed for a top six place at times. Following such a positive campaign, sections of their supporters harbored hopes that the club could go one step further and launch a more serious bid for a playoff position. However, after losing a couple of key men during the summer, such an achievement was always going to be difficult and the Lions appear to have struggled in their opening six games. Kenny Jackett’s men have accumulated six points so far but it would be fair to say that their fixtures have not been overly strenuous. With the Lions also approaching this fixture on the back of a heavy 3-0 defeat to Birmingham last week, Jackett will be hoping for significant improvements over the next few games.
West Ham were unsurprisingly seen as one of the clear favorites for promotion during the summer. Even though they experienced something of a sticky start, it looks as though the bookmakers were correct as the Hammers are starting to make an advance towards the automatic positions. The club currently sit in 4th spot but with just three points separating them from table topping Brighton, the automatic positions are certainly within their grasp. What’s more, following a shock defeat to Aldershot in the Carling Cup a couple of weeks ago, the Hammers have shown incredible attacking prowess having beaten Nottingham Forest and Portsmouth 4-1 and 4-3 respectively since.
Millwall will be without two players ahead of this clash as Therry Racon and Shaun Batt continue to sit on the sidelines with their injury problems. On a more positive note, Kenny Jackett should be able to call on the services of John Marquis even though the striker has been scheduled for a hernia. West Ham on the other hand look set to be without Guy Demel, who is struggling after suffering an injury in a reserve fixture. The Hammers will also be missing Frederic Piquionne who starts a three game suspension.
There is no doubt that the derby factor will play a huge part in this fixture and form will go out of the window. However, West Ham have a much stronger squad on paper than their opponents and with that, our prediction will be a narrow 2-1 victory for the Hammers.