Hail and well met, Hammers! After an accidental break, we are back. It worked out well with the international break happening.
It looks as if the loan watch will be taking a forced break, unless you all want weekly updates on Robert Snodgrass, though. We’ll explain below, of course.
For now, though, there’s plenty to cover on the international break and the week before, so let’s get right to it.
Joshua Cullen did not play in the most recent match against Aston Villa, but he’s still seeing use as the captain of the Ireland U21 squad.
@JoshCullen8 was in impressive form for #IRLU21s last week with Head Coach Noel King full of praise for his captain's efforts. #BWFC pic.twitter.com/Zxf8jBxhZE— Bolton Wanderers FC (@OfficialBWFC) October 11, 2017
Declan Rice also saw some time in the Ireland U21’s 4-0 win against the Israel U21 squad.
"For us, he's key. I really like this lad." - Big praise from Keith Andrews for @JoshCullen8! #IRLU21s pic.twitter.com/VjZRsADoPI— eirSport (@eirSport) October 5, 2017
Bolton fans can say whatever they’d like, but the manager of the U21s seems to know how best to use Cullen, playing him for the entirety of the two most recent U21 matches, and he sees the potential in our young lad.
Josh is a brilliant player at this level but Uplay2much hoooff balll that’s Cullen’s disadvantages he’s only5ft with his birds high heals on— Peter Goudie (@peterbcafc) October 11, 2017
We think if we’re going to trust the judgment of anyone, it’s that of a manager whose squad can actually win games. . . Yeah, we said it.
Josh Cullen and Declan Rice helped Republic of Ireland beat Israel 4-0 to maintain their unbeaten start to UEFA European U21 Championship dg pic.twitter.com/Uw82bhcWQx— David Gold (@davidgold) October 10, 2017
While Josh Cullen may never be a superstar, he works his boots off on the pitch, and he’ll absolutely be another staple player at West Ham United. We’re thinking someone along the lines of Mark Noble.
International watch. @JoshCullen8 was named as #IRLU21s' MOTM in their goalless draw with Norway on Thursday evening. #BWFC pic.twitter.com/nVuD8JwYdM— Bolton Wanderers FC (@OfficialBWFC) October 6, 2017
Noble has been a touch off his game this season, most likely due to getting older, but one could aspire to be a lot worse than a Mark Noble.
Great result today to cap off a good week away with the Ireland 21s! Also a proud moment to captain my country again #COYBIG ⚽️— Josh Cullen (@JoshCullen8) October 9, 2017
Playing for a country a bit less prestigious than England, though, Josh will at least be able to get those ever-elusive international caps that have evaded Noble the entirety of his career. Here’s hoping.
Reece Burke has not yet made an appearance for Bolton since the 1-0 loss to Brentford on 23rd September, and we’re not quite sure why.
Parkinson insists the class of #whufc youngsters Reece Burke and Josh Cullen will shine through at #bwfchttps://t.co/NGdJofdL8e— Marc Iles (@MarcIles) September 29, 2017
We don’t want to always side with our young fellas as they’re still clearly in their developmental phases as footballers, but it seems there’s a bit of mismanagement with this Bolton squad, and it’s not just us here at Brace the Hammer that are thinking it.
So Reece Oxford, Reece Burke and Josh Cullen are all returning to the club around Christmas time.— West Ham Fan Zone (@WHUFCFZ) September 29, 2017
This helps clear some things up. We suppose it makes sense for Josh Cullen, since his style of play isn’t working out with what Bolton’s manager is trying to do. For Burke, though, who has arguably been one of Bolton’s best defenders, it is a more questionable move.
Oxford had canceled his loan of his own accord, likely due to not getting in the squad at Gladbach, and would presumably be returning to the club around Christmas. This one we thought we knew. There are now conflicting reports, saying that Oxford may want to stay at Gladbach and wait for his chance in the Bundesliga side’s first team.
Reece Oxford insists he feels fitter than ever and is ready to be given his chance at Borussia Monchengladbach.[Sky Sports]— Chelsea (@ouggi) October 11, 2017
Reece did recently play for country in the England U20s matches during the international break, namely helping the squad — alongside other young Hammer, Nathan Trott — to a 4-0 win against Czech Republic.
West Ham’s Nathan Trott and Reece Oxford helped England U20s beat the Czech Republic 4-0 at St George’s Park. Well done lads. dg pic.twitter.com/2eXe11B2kV— David Gold (@davidgold) October 11, 2017
Last of our loanees, Snodgrass, is still doing well for Aston Villa, and also for country. Snoddy sat as an unused sub in Scotland’s 1-0 win against Slovakia, but was subbed on in the 79th minute and scored an 88th minute goal for the Scotland first team in their 8th October match against Slovenia.
Robert Snodgrass scored a late equaliser for Scotland against Slovenia, however it wasn't enough for qualification pic.twitter.com/xzRXILHnbK— West Ham News (@WHUFC_News) October 8, 2017
Before the international break, Snodgrass played 89 minutes in a 1-0 win for Aston Villa against — you guessed it — winless Bolton.