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Premier League Preview: Stoke City - West Ham

The Britannia Stadium has been a happy hunting ground for West Ham, and Sam Allardyce will hope it stays that way Saturday.

West Ham has emerged victorious in four of the six league games it has played at the ground, including a 1-0 triumph last March.

Although Stoke City has a different man in the dugout this time around, with Mark Hughes having replaced the long-serving Tony Pulis, Allardyce does not anticipate an easy ride as his resurgent team seeks a fifth win in six Premier League outings.

Stoke has displayed impressive form at the Britannia this season, losing only twice in the league and beating Chelsea, Manchester United and Arsenal.

"It's a real tough game for us because their home form has been very, very good, as it was under Tony Pulis," said West Ham boss Allardyce. "I think they're fifth in the table in terms of home form (Stoke actually is tied for the sixth-best record), only losing two, so it shows you how tough the game is going to be for us. Everybody has to be at their best.

"I remember us having a fantastic result there last year, a 1-0 win with Jack Collison scoring. We go in good form, even though we lost to Everton (last weekend). We go with a lot of confidence and we've got to make sure we convert that confidence into a very good performance."

Defeat to Everton brought an end to a superb run of West Ham form that saw the club claim four successive wins to pull away from trouble at the foot of the table.

However, West Ham and Stoke know further points are required to make sure of survival, with both sides currently six points above the bottom three. Stoke has lost just one of its last six league games, but will be without two influential players this weekend.

Jonathan Walters must serve a three-game ban having been dismissed for a high challenge on Norwich City's Alexander Tettey in last weekend’s 1-1 draw at Carrow Road. Charlie Adam is also unavailable, with the Scotland midfielder also picking up a three-game suspension for standing on the leg of Olivier Giroud when Stoke beat Arsenal earlier this month.

Winger Oussama Assaidi could return from a knee injury, but defender Robert Huth remains sidelined.

West Ham is without Marco Borriello (calf) and Joey O'Brien (dislocated shoulder), but has an otherwise clean bill of health.

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