• Stuart Rae

MOYLES BETTER: COULD THIS SEASON OF PROGRESS FOR WEST HAM JUST BE THE START


After a poor run of results in the 2019/20 campaign Manuel Pellegrini would eventually be sacked just a few days before the new year.


With West Ham at the bottom end of the table they needed to bring someone in who could steady the ship.


The owners decided to bring in David Moyes for a second spell at the club. Moyes was previously brought in when the club sacked Slaven Billic to steer them away from the relegation zone and that would be his job again this time around.


The news was received with mixed emotions amongst the West Ham fans. Many believed it was a backwards step. Moyes had a tough start to his second spell in charge, this would then be brought to a halt by Covid-19.


Upon football’s return the Hammers had a bit of fire about them. A standout performer would be Michail Antonio, scoring eight goals in six matches. With these incredible performances from Antonio and his teammates, Moyes would successfully save West Ham from the drop for a second time in his management career.


The new campaign has seen somewhat of a new look West Ham, with defensive stability and an exciting counter-attack, the East London club find themselves 6th in the table very much still in the race for a top four finish.


In recent years West Ham have been known for the leaky defence. This will have been something that was high on manager David Moyes’ list of things to sort when he returned to the hammers.


In October, the Hammers would bring in Craig Dawson on loan from Watford. The news of this signing was not very well received. Little did the fans know that this would become a fantastic piece of business by the Scot.


Dawson would have to bide his time for a few months and when an injury to Fabian Balbuena created an opportunity, the English defender would not let it pass by. In a 0-0 draw away to Southampton, Dawson put in a man of the match performance and has created an exceptionally good partnership with Angelo Ogbonna. The 30-year-old has featured in every game for the London side since, chipping in with two goals.


Another standout performer at the back has been Vladimir Coufal. Recommend to Moyes by his national teammate Tomas Soucek, Coufal has been a rock at right back and really showed his worth in West Ham’s recent game away to Aston Villa when he looked extremely comfortable up against Jack Grealish.


West Ham have always been known for having a fair amount of aerial threat and this season is no different. The previously mentioned Soucek is the main man that comes to mind when you think about this subject. His aerial ability is threat in both his own and the opposition’s box, making him the current top goalscorer for the Hammers.


As well as the impact of the new signings, it would be unfair to leave out the importance of the likes of Aaron Cresswell and Declan Rice. This season these two have really come into their own. Cresswell’s ability to bomb up and down the wing tirelessly and whip an excellent ball into the box is a vital part of West Ham’s game.


Rice has captained the club the majority of this season with Mark Noble not featuring in as many games. And for someone who is only 22 years of age the maturity and talent the central midfielder has is exceptional.


In the attacking third West Ham do not lack technical ability whatsoever. With the signings of Said Benrahma and the loan of Jesse Lingard it is clear to see that Moyes is looking to really push West Ham and make them the top club the fans have been promised for years.


The January transfer window saw West Ham offload under-performing Sebastian Haller to Ajax. This was a move that was overall understood and well received by fans. However, the failure to bring in another striker in the window has left the Hammers fans extremely worried considering Antonio’s previous injury worries.


However, West Ham fans have questioned David Moyes time and time again and yet he seems to be getting the best out of the squad right now and giving the fans something to cheer about so should they sit tight and finally put some faith in the Scot?


As we come towards the latter stages of the season West Ham have really turned themselves around and if the players can keep this up it certainly looks like exciting times are ahead for the club.

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