SHARE

West Ham have given their survival hopes a real boost in recent weeks, embarking on a three-match unbeaten run.

Five points in three games has seen the Hammers open a seven-point advantage over the relegation zone but Slaven Bilic’s side are still not mathematically safe.

A difficult trip to Stoke City awaits this weekend and with Swansea City playing on Sunday, it means the Welsh side will have the chance to respond.

A poor turn in results this weekend could see West Ham’s advantage drop to just four points and Sky Sports pundit Paul Merson can’t see West Ham beating Stoke.

“This feels like a dead rubber. West Ham are safe and Stoke don’t have too much to play for other than jostling for mid-table.”

“In this sort of situation it’s safe to stick with the home team and while I think West Ham will score, I fancy Marko Arnautovic to get plenty of joy again. I’m a big fan of the Austrian.”

However, Merson doesn’t expect Swansea will give their survival hopes a boost as he expects Manchester United to sweep them aside on Sunday, which would see the points difference remain as it is.