A combined best XI: West Ham United v Stoke City

The Frenchman can strike a ball - does Dimitri Payet make our Stoke City/West Ham combined XI? (Photo by Arfa Griffiths/West Ham United via Getty Images)
The Frenchman can strike a ball - does Dimitri Payet make our Stoke City/West Ham combined XI? (Photo by Arfa Griffiths/West Ham United via Getty Images) /

Each weekend in the Premier League brings new challenges. One thing is consistent though: your opposition always has one or two players you’d like.

For Stoke City’s clash at the London Stadium on Saturday, we take a look at who would be picked from either side to make the strongest XI in a 4-2-3-1 formation.


1. Adrian

Current injuries have had an impact on this decision. Lee Grant has done a great job since arriving at Stoke – but he doesn’t have the presence of Hammers stopper Adrian. Had Jack Butland been fit, it may have been a closer call.


2. Winston Reid

West Ham have been playing with three at the back for much of this campaign. Reid usually finds himself on the right-side of that three.

5. Ryan Shawcross

Stoke City’s captain. It’s hard to find a reason not to pick the commanding centre-half. A turnaround in the defence warrants him a spot.

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6. Cheikhou Kouyate

I haven’t seen too much of Kouyate this season. Despite being used as a centre-half by Slaven Bilic so far in 2016/17, his ability in the holding role last campaign was impressive.

3. Aaron Cresswell

Cresswell has seen himself pushed higher up the pitch this season due to the shift at the back. In this formation though, he fits in nicely as a left-back.


4. Geoff Cameron

The American may well have got a look in with the back-four. In recent weeks however, Cameron has been tasked with sitting in front of the defence in the holding role. It suits him.

8. Mark Noble

An absolute stalwart in the middle of the park, a hero at West Ham. Noble’s control of a midfield is admirable. A must-have. Would work well with Cameron shielding the defence.

7. Dimitri Payet

How could you not pick this man? Arguably one of the best players in the league on his day, let alone on the pitch tomorrow. Payet’s ability and technical craft should see him into any combined XI this season.

10. Joe Allen

His turn in form this season has earned him the spot in behind the attack for this combined XI. Allen’s (almost sudden) ability to pick a pass, split defences and score goals gets him the nod.

11. Marko Arnautovic

Michael Antonio is a solid option on this flank. Arnautovic gets selected due to consistency, and his slightly higher wealth of experience. Perhaps the more reliable of the two, the Austrian is capable of delivering when the Potters need it most.


9. Wilfried Bony

Luckily for Bony, most of the attacking options at West Ham have been falling short, too. If it wasn’t for the brace on Monday against Swansea, Bony would do well to get a spot on the bench.


12. Lee Grant

13. Angelo Ogbonna

14. Bruno Martins Indi

15. Glenn Whelan

16. Michael Antonio

17. Manuel Lanzini

18. Simone Zaza

So there you have it. A Stoke City and West Ham United combined XI.

West Ham seem to dominate the selections at the back, while Stoke City appear to be providing most of the attacking options…

A stalemate, I wonder.