Football Previews: West Ham begin campaign while Millwall and Charlton hunt for first points
The season begins for West Ham as they look for a good start to their second consecutive year in the Premier League.
A division below and the optimism is disappearing for Millwall and Charlton who are still hoping to pick up their first points after two defeats each.
West Ham's new signing Stewart Downing is set to go straight into the squad for the match against top-flight newcomers Cardiff City.
Manager Sam Allardyce is hoping the winger from Liverpool - and new fellow new signing from Anfield Andy Carroll - will be key to West Ham's success this season.
Overall, the manager has been happy with his summer transfer activity. "To pick up two players of the quality of Stewart and Andy is good business both financially and in football terms, and they will help to improve us as an attacking unit," he told the club's website.
Meanwhile, goalkeeper Adrian, who joined from Real Betis, will provide competition to Jussi Jaaskelainen, while Romania's captain, left-back Razvan Rat, will bolster the Hammers' defence.
For Saturday's clash, James Collins could miss out due to a knee injury after sitting out Wales' midweek match. However, Allardyce is hoping he'll be fit.
"We've had knocks, but no player has had to miss a game because of injury throughout the entire summer, so I hope that continues all the way through to next May," said the manager.
West Ham old boy Craig Bellamy is likely to captain Cardiff with Mark Hudson out injured.
West Ham v Cardiff, Saturday, 3pm. This match is sold out.
Scott McDonald and Lee Martin are both in with a good chance of starting for Millwall against Huddersfield at The Den on Saturday.
Both have been building up their fitness levels after joining the club late in the summer but could benefit by manager Steve Lomas ringing in the changes following the 3-0 defeat at Ipswich last weekend.
Paul Robinson, who played in the 2-1 friendly win over Brentford on Tuesday, will also hope to be involved.
Huddersfield go into the game in good spirits after winning a point against promotion favourites QPR last week.
Meanwhile, Nicky Shorey is still on trial at the club but Lomas this week admitted he needed to reduce the wage bill before bringing anyone in.
Millwall v Huddersfield, Saturday, 3pm. For tickets click here
Captain Johnnie Jackson is set to miss out in Charlton's clash at Barnsley this weekend, following a calf injury picked up last weekend.
Manager Chris Powell told the club's website: "It's a recurrence of what happened in training and we have got to get him right.
"So I very much doubt we'll see him at Oakwell."
Dale Stephens, who replaced Jackson at half-time in last week's defeat to Middlesbrough, is likely to deputise again in the centre of midfield.
Powell, however, admitted Stephens will probably leave during this month's transfer window if a northern club come in for him, due to the Bolton-born player's homesickness.
A big choice for Powell is who plays up front. With Marvin Sordell yet to score this season, Simon Church, who hit two in the recent League Cup win over Oxford, is hoping for his first start.
Barnsley v Charlton, Saturday, 3pm. Click here for tickets.