New manager, renewed optimism and fresh hope and to top it all off, the football season is back and I for one am desperate for it to start. I wanted the break when it ended and I didn't really get into the European championships or even the Olympics, but now I'm ready and desperate for it.

And first up is West Ham in London and this is very much a match where we should be looking for three points and when thinking about things that are possible or not, this is well within the realms of possibility.

I'm not though going to write that I expect it. I expect little these days. But I do like how the manager hasn't come in and drastically changes things. I really like that all he has done is bring in players that were not from Norwich and you know what, I like that we've not sold off the silver this summer.

Some stats

Here is a sad statistic for you; in the League, we've beaten West Ham 32 times which is the exact amount that they've beaten us. Tally up all matches and you'll find that West Ham have beaten us more times than we have beaten them.

Take away the two times we beat them in the season they were relegated and the gap would be bigger. Still, we can take comfort in knowing we did beat them twice that season and also that they're not going to have a great season this time and we should fancy ourselves.

Odds

But the odds actually make West Ham the favourites and while I can understand you've got a lot of punters in London putting money on them, it doesn't make sense to me, but again, I'm biased, so in my head we were always going to be favourites for this match, but I'm having some cash on the away win, because I see us winning this match and Paul Lambert getting all the praise on Match of the Day.

Prediction

I think I've given away my prediction for this match and you can put it down to optimism, but there is nothing else. There is no mathematical formula designed to predict football results and you have to go with your heart, but my heart says we will win and that West Ham will get a reality check after spending a season in the Championship.

Mostly though, I'm just looking forward to see how we play under this manager. The result matters, for sure, but I want to see the ball on the ground and I want to see other players creating space and wanting the ball and not giving it away too easily. If I see that, I'll be happy. The win will just be what makes the weekend.

Fantasy League

Before I go, you have today to get your team in for our fantasy football game and for all those that have contacted me about sponsoring, I'll be in contact soon.

  • League Name: The Villa Blog
  • League Pin: 161353
  • Password: vlaar
  • Link: www.dreamteamfc.com