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Aguerd back – Kudus on bench

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Nayef Aguerd and Said Benrahma return to the West Ham United team for the game at Luton Town this evening.

The central defender returns after serving a one match suspension  for the red card he was shown against Chelsea a fortnight ago.

Benrahma is in for Tomáš Souček, who is suffered a head injury at Brighton and has to remain unavailable for seven days as a result.

James Ward-Prowse and Edson Álvarez  continue in midfield, while  Mohammed Kudus is one of nine substitutes after arriving from from Ajax last Sunday.

Jarrod Bowen will hope to become the first West Ham player since Vic Watson in 1930/31 to score in the Irons’ first three top-flight away matches of a new season, having netted at AFC Bournemouth and Brighton.

He needs a hat-trick to make it to 100 senior goals, and could reach his century with a hat-trick this evening!

16x 9 v Luton Town

Kurt Zouma’s fellow France international Alphonse Areola continues in goal after being included in his national squad for two September internationals.

With the returning Aguerd at left centre-back, the back four is completed by Czech Republic international Vladimír Coufal and Emerson in the full-back positions.

Mexico star Álvarez looks set to slot into a defensive midfield role ahead of the back four, while Lucas Paquetá will wear the No10 shirt and could fill that role again.

Michail Antonio will lead the line, with the No9 seeking to add to his Club record haul of 63 Premier League goals on his 232nd top-flight appearance for the Irons, the most-recent of which completed the scoring in last weekend’s 3-1 win at Brighton.

Ghana international Kudus is joined on a strong bench by midfielder Pablo Fornals and fellow attackers Maxwel Cornet, Danny Ings and Divin Mubama, who scored a penalty in West Ham’s shootout victory here in the FA Youth Cup third round in December 2020.

Academy of Football graduate Reece Burke starts in the Luton defence, while long-serving former Hammer Pelly Ruddock Mpanzu is among the home substitutes for Rob Edwards’ Hatters.

Luton Town: Kaminski, Bell, Burke, Andersen, Doughty, Giles, Nakamba, Barkley, Chong, Morris ©, Adebayo
Subs: Krul, Ogbene, Berry, Woodrow, Kaboré, Mpanzu, Brown, Johnson, Francis-Clarke

West Ham United: Areola, Coufal, Zouma ©, Aguerd, Emerson, Álvarez, Ward-Prowse, Bowen, Paquetá, Benrahma, Antonio
Subs: Fabiański (GK), Cresswell, Kehrer, Ogbonna, Fornals, Cornet, Kudus, Ings, Mubama

Referee: Paul Tierney

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Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!"

Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon

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