Written by @Kaz7289
Hi guys, @Kaz7289 here. Excited to be invited and writing for the “WestHamWay”, Ex is a great guy and hope I don’t let him down. Was struggling to come up with ideas for my first article but this great fanbase helped so going to be doing what you asked for and a bit of a mix up including a bit on transfers, what management/coaches are doing wrong, What tactics/formation/starting XI we should look to going forward and what I would have done differently in pre-season. Enjoy!
I’ll start with pre-season, first game was 0-0, we kept the ball, played it around, gave everyone minutes which the first pre-season game is all about and was overall a good day at work bar not scoring but Hernandez was brought into fix that, An amazing player who’s played at the highest level, loved by everyone with an impressive record and experience. I saw a few photos of the lads in training and looked like they were working hard and thought Slav had learned from his mistakes and improved training intensity, brought in quality proven players and excited for the season but as pre-season went on we played exactly same way as first with no tactics, no intensity and didn’t vs teams we could challenge ourselves against bar City but even then, No improvement and played like we had against the rest. Again most of us shrugged it off as it’s only pre-season (which it was and to be fair means nothing in terms of how the season will pan out but can motivate, get players fit and give insight of what tactics best suit out players), I also think no home games didn’t help and I understand playing abroad opens our doors to fans across the globe and more but this season we should have played the majority of games in big English grounds getting prepared for the OS, pace, intensity and physicality of English game which evidently would have helped against Utd as it seemed like we still hadn’t woken up from pre-season! In our defence we did have a lot of key injuries so does make it hard for Slav to prepare but it’s a manager’s job to overcome these hurdles and work with what he has.
Looking at United away it wasn’t a great start to a game and season us fans were optimistic and excited for. We were negative and looked like we were playing for the 0-0 after the first 30 minutes and as soon as their first went in we did try to get on the ball more but looked slow, lazy and sloppy whilst Utd picked up on it and hit us fast and HARD on the counter punishing us. I do think Slav set this match up very wrong and I know it’s early days against the biggest most expensive side in England but it’s nothing new, we have seen these type of performances over the past year! I feel we should have started with 3/5 at the back and look to it going forward as worked so well to keep Lukaku quiet last season, got us lots of clean sheets (arguably keeping us up) and Masuaku’s best utilized in wing back where he can cause serious damage when used affectively (which some have seemed to forget already). Only problem with it last season was scoring, we’d either nick one goal or play for the 0-0 but have since signed Javier and Arnautovic to change that. The trio in midfield of Obiang, Noble and Fernandes was slow, negative and didn’t create chances although Noble did try to be part of anything and everything we did so credit where is due but a 3-4-3 overall I feel would have benefited the team as a whole. Only questions about it for me would be the starting XI and what additional signings needed? How to fit everyone in? Good selection headaches to have!
??? Reid Og
Zab/Byram Carvalho ??? Masuaku/Cress
Antonio Hernandez Arnautovic
Would be great if you guys could get involved and fill in the gaps with who you would start especially with Lanzini who is crucial to the side (I’d personally play him alongside Carv assuming he signs in a free roaming role)? Or if you completely disagree that this is the formation/way to take us forward let me know!
Best part now, who do we want, who do we need and who needs to go? After last season, pre-season and Utd away it is clear we need a proper no nonsense CB who isn’t slow, will clear up, organize the defence and good in the air, A creative attacker to cover Lanzini as create no chances when he is gone and obviously Carvalho who is very close and personally think he will be huge to the midfield and the team with his qualities, strength, positional awareness, vision, passing, height and tackling attributes giving all our attack minded players more freedom. I have heard that him and Jota are next likely candidates to be joining after a couple of outgoings which have been widely reported and also another name that is Mamadou Sakho I have also heard we are interested in and may make a late move for with Liverpool’s demands putting clubs off and him not looking closer to be resolving a dispute between him and Klopp, Liverpool could be forced into a corner with window coming to an end and we could get a good deal, Another defender leaving could push a deal faster. Striker would have been ideal but with Sakho back, Carroll coming back, Martinez coming through and Javier we should be fine unless we sell one first.
Anyway guys thanks for reading my first article, I am going on holiday soon but will try and get an article out every week or so afterwards and maybe one or two during. At the end of the day we have made some great signings and have key players coming back, bar our mistakes it’s still an exciting time to be a hammer, I do feel Slav needs proper defensive and striker coaches to assist also work the boys harder in training but with tools provided it would be harder to fail than succeed, He has a contract to fight for and lots of key players still to come back. I hope he’s the one that can take us to the next level despite any constructive criticism! #COYI
(Don’t know when this will be going out so some news may be outdated but I’m sure Ex will update you all!)