West Ham United’s Pablo Zabaleta felt Wednesday that injuries have been the only reason why his new club has gotten off to a disappointing start in their 2017-18 campaign thus far.
In an interview with The Daily Star, the Argentine right back discussed how instrumental his countryman Manuel Lanzini is to the Hammers, as well as other absentees contributing significantly to a 15th place Premier League start with just seven points in the first two months of the season.
“We’ve been missing Manu so far this season and he’s probably the only player we have to create [chances], and at least to keep the ball a little bit more,” Zabaleta said. “[He is] a player to play in the hole, between the lines, and that was a big difference when Manu came on.”
“I think what we are missing at some points in the game is that creativity that you need to create chances, to keep the ball. Sometimes we play so quickly that we gave the ball away so this is something we need to improve.”
Further going in on his point of West Ham’s unlucky unavailability and not Slaven Bilic’s tactics as the reason why for the frustrating start, Lanzini talked about Marko Arnautovic catching illness right before the 1-0 victory over Swansea last week.
“We lost Marko [on Friday] with a high fever, he was sick and ill, [Pedro] Obiang out too. It seems like every time we have a problem with some players we cannot keep everyone fit for a long period, everyone being consistent.”
“That is probably the only problem I can see at this moment.”