Oh Álvaro Arbeloa, it all started out so well. He was signed by West Ham on Transfer Deadline Day for free. Things looked promising, but Arbeloa only managed four awful games for the club and was released at the end of the season.
I was really excited for this signing, Arbeloa’s was one of the best right backs of recent years. Here’s a list of his honours, he’s won every competition of note, internationally and domestically:
Arbeloa didn’t make the squad for the Real Madrid’s 2016 Champions League final win in 2016, but I was still optimistic. They don’t just let anyone into the Real Madrid squad, so I thought he’d at least improve the Hammers.
You’re probably asking yourself, what did Arbeloa achieve in a West Ham United shirt? You are not the only person who has asked themselves this. In the past 12 months, his contribution was so minimal that Wikipedia hasn’t even updated his picture.
Arbeloa is hands down the biggest disappointment of a West Ham player since Javier Mascherano. Sure we’ve had various dreadful players in this era, for example, Modibo Maiga, who we shan’t linger on for much longer lest I burst into tears.
But no recent player has arrived in claret and blue with such expectation and international pedigree and achieved so little. Arbeloa and Mascherano had high hopes attached and left the club after nothing seasons.
Highlights and Low Points
Highs: The day of the transfer was the high point of Arbeloa’s West Ham career, it was a day filled with hope. The problem right back position seemed to have beeen granted some short-term stability.
Lows: The entirety of Arbeloa’s time at West Ham was a waste of time for everyone involved. Let’s examine these lowlights in greater depth, here’s the complete list of appearances the World Cup winner made for the Irons.
4 games. 3 yellow cards. 9 goals conceded. With the only win coming against League Two Accrington Stanley in the EFL Cup. I went to that game and West Ham were awful, we were saved from extra time by a scrumptious Dimitri Payet free kick in the ninetieth minute.
Arbeloa featured in the next couple of Premier League games, neither went well for the Hammers as we haemorrhaged four goals in two lacklustre performances. The great Arbeloa experiment came to a merciful end in December as West Ham got battered by Arsenal 1-5 at home.
Álvaro Arbeloa’s West Ham nightmare is over as the club announced his departure thusly:
"Álvaro Arbeloa’s contract expires on 30 June after his single season in east London, during which time he made three Premier League appearances and also started the EFL Cup victory over Accrington Stanley."
I almost had to wipe a tear away from the emotion shown by the club here as they rehashed those classic appearances, including the glorious win over League Two Accrington Stanley. Ah those were the good times.
What’s next for the Spaniard is anyone’s guess but it is unlikely any top-tier club will want to acquire his services. It was a terrible season from a highly decorated player, the next step is unclear for the 34-year-old.
Final Grade – F