Media Player Ratings- West Ham v Crystal Palace

West Ham managed a 1-1 draw at home against Roy Hodgson’s Crystal Palace on Tuesday night. Injuries and suspensions significantly limited manager David Moyes’ options, and he would’ve been reasonably pleased with a point that continued the Hammers’ unbeaten start to the New Year in the Premier league.

How did the media view loan signing Joao Mario, who was making his home league debut in front of 56,911 at the London Stadium? How did they see young Sam Byram, having his first league start of the season at right back, with Pablo Zabaleta drafted into midfield to partner Mark Noble? How did Aaron Cresswell, who has done quite well on the left side of a back three under Moyes, fare after being pushed to wingback to cover for the suspended Masuaku? [Read more…]

West Ham v Crystal Palace 2018 Report- Injury hit Hammers pick up point against mid table rivals

A late first half penalty from Mark Noble, his 50th goal in West Ham colours, saw the home side draw against Roy Hodgson’s Crystal Palace in their midweek clash at the London Stadium. It also marked the first time in over four decades (1974 to be precise) that the Hammers have gone unbeaten in their first five top flight games of the calendar year.

With Manuel Lanzini, Marko Arnautovic, Andy Carroll and Pedro Obiang injured, and Arthur Masuaku beginning the first of a six game ban for spitting at Nick Powell, West Ham boss David Moyes had to dig deep to field a match day squad. Fortunately for him, his task was made easier by Noble, Declan Rice and Cheikhou Kouyate shaking off their pre-game knocks in time for this fixture. Michail Antonio, whose mistake had cost West Ham dear in the reverse fixture at Selhurst Park earlier in the season, didn’t feature in the squad- Moyes later revealed that he had been left out for disciplinary reasons (coming late to team meetings)

With Masuaku suspended, Aaron Cresswell was moved from his position in defence to left wingback. In came Declan Rice as part of a back three with Angelo Ogbonna and James Collins. Joao Mario was handed a home debut, albeit in a slightly advanced role than he would probably have wanted, with the Portuguese international and Kouyate playing just behind Javier Hernandez. Pablo Zabaleta was chosen to partner Noble in midfield, meaning a first league start of the Premier League season for young Sam Byram at right back [Read more…]

Ex Player Watch- Diafra Sakho goal on debut v PSG for Rennes (Video)

Former West Ham striker Diafra Sakho, who had moved to Rennes just days before, made his debut for Les Rouges and Noirs earlier this evening in their French Cup clash against Paris Saint-Germain.

Rennes went 3-0 down before Sakho claimed their first goal of the game in the 85th minute, sparking hopes of a comeback against ten man PSG, who had Kylian Mbappe red carded. Although SRFC pulled one more goal back, PSG hung on for a 3-2 win.

Here is Sakho’s goal v PSG for Rennes [Read more…]

Diafra Sakho leaves West Ham to join Rennes

Wantaway striker Diafra Sakho has finally left West Ham, with French Ligue 1 outfit Stade Rennais snapping up the Senegalese international for a reported fee of £8m. Sakho has made no secret of his desire to leave the Hammers, and was on the verge of a summer switch to Rennes that broke down at the last moment because the Irons had not signed a replacement. Given that Marko Arnautovic, Andy Carroll, Manuel Lanzini and Andre Ayew are on the treatment table currently, West Ham fans should reasonably expect the club to sign another striker- potentially thought to be Russian Fydor Smolov, before the winter transfer window closes. [Read more…]

Joao Mario completes loan switch | Portuguese star to wear No.18 at West Ham

West Ham have officially completed their first major piece of January business after signing midfielder Joao Mario on loan from Italian giants Inter Milan. The 25 year old, signed by the Nerazzurri from Sporting in the summer of 2016 for £38m, will be at the London Stadium till the end of the 2017/18 season, and will wear the No.18 jersey. He could make his Hammers debut as soon as this weekend in the club’s fourth round FA Cup tie against Wigan Athletic [Read more…]

Comparison Stats- Marko Arnautovic under Moyes vs Arnautovic under Bilic

Marko Arnautovic has been a changed man since David Moyes replaced Slaven Bilic at the London Stadium, and the Austrian continued his fine form with a goal and assists for Manuel Lanzini in West Ham’s 4-1 win over Huddersfield. Arnautovic’s performance in that game prompted Football.London to give him a 10/10 rating– the first one they’ve given to any West Ham player in the current campaign.

Under Slaven Bilic, Arnautovic looked like an early candidate for “Flop signing of the summer”, and this infographic shows the dramatic change in the performances of him and Manuel Lanzini since Moyes arrived. He even earned a nomination for the December player of the month (the award eventually went to Harry Kane)

While we’ve known that the duo have improved, to see it in terms of numbers is quite an eye-opener, literally speaking.

Can a change of manager influence things that much? Looking at these stats, definitely yes! [Read more…]