Much to the frustration of Hammer fans there is a plethora of talent on this squad. Manuel Lanzini and Dimitri Payet are immensely creative and always seem one touch away from changing the course of the match. Pedro Obiang is a strong defensive midfielder who can turn away a dribble with the best of them. So where lies the problem? What is holding this team back from playing to expectation? Apathy.
For months East London has been calling out for a striker who will be able to take a bit of pressure off of Lanzini and Payet. Sure, having a consistent goal threat up top would make any team instantly better but is that the key holding the Hammers back? I’m not entirely convinced. The biggest issue with West Ham United right now is their mental fragility. Hammers always seems the better team until a brief moment of contention and the whole Iron side seems to put on their “oh, not this again” faces.
Watch Chelsea, Tottenham, Manchester United, or any other club with a strong midfield. When an attack breaks down they runs back to occupy their defensive passing lanes to stave off the counter. Our Hammers throw their hands up in frustration and watch the opposition take off towards their defensive third. At one point against Arsenal, Cech was able to rifle the ball to the halfway line where a one-touch pass sent Alexi Sanchez to the outside of the Hammer’s box. That should never happen regardless of who you are playing. West Ham is a team with extremely low confidence at the moment and unless they pull themselves up by their boot straps they will find themselves in the bottom three of the table.
At the onset of the season West Ham United suffered from serious and woeful injuries. The result of which created some highly inconsistent lineups being put out by manager Slaven Bilic. What choice did he have given the health of his squad? However, what Slaven can be faulted for is his choice of summer signings, where outside of Manuel Lanzini, none of the transfers have proven to be wise. Even when healthy - Andre Ayew has been spot starting, Gokhan Tore peaked his head out once or twice, and Zaza has been a massive disappointed in his few appearances. Let’s not even mention Jonathan Calleri, Sofiane Feghouli, and Alvaro Arbeloa.
There is hope, however.
After an away trip to Liverpool we have a run of fixtures that will most certainly decide the fate of Slaven Bilic, and West Ham United’s future in the Premier League. With points on the line against Burnley (H), Hull (H), Swansea (A), and Leicester (A), West Ham have a real opportunity to turn things around. I can guarantee points dropped against Burnley and Hull at home will undoubtedly force Slaven to spruce up his resume.