It’s that time of the year once again, yes, we’ve reached another International break and another two or so weeks without Manuel Pellegrini’s West Ham United playing a match.
However, it’s not all doom and gloom as members of the Claret & Blue Army can still get their Hammers fix during the second and third week of October, with plenty of Irons stars in action for their respective nations. Join us as we tell you where and when West Ham’s Internationals will be in action during the October international break.
Unlike last month’s September International break, there are more than just a handful of Pellegrini’s first-team on international duty, in fact, half-a-dozen will jet off to join up with their international teammates.
While before it was just goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski of Poland and attackers, Robert Snodgrass of Scotland, Andriy Yarmolenko of Ukraine and Marko Arnautovic of Austria, defenders Fabian Balbuena and Arthur Masuaku have been added to the frame.
Balbuena is back in favour with Paraguay’s national selectors under new manager Juan Carlos Osorio, after the summer signing wasn’t picked in September, however, they just have a training camp and are not scheduled to play any matches.
Meanwhile, Masuaku has earned his first Democratic Republic of Congo call-up since he and a selection of comrades left International duty early in March over a row involving the nation’s travel plans to a faraway friendly, he is set to make his International debut in 2019 African Cup of Nations qualifying.
Where And When?
So, without further ado, let’s get down into the nitty-gritty of the details, where and when will West Ham’s International stars be in action, how can you watch them? You are about to find out.
In terms of the International break in Europe, it all starts this evening (Wednesday 10 October) and as was the case last time, all of the continent are in UEFA Nations League action, if you are still unsure of the format, we explained it to you at the start of September.
But, the first night just consists of international friendlies with one international Hammer due to play, summer signing Yarmolenko, whose Ukraine team travel to Genoa for a friendly with Italy, which kicks off at 7:45 PM BST, you can’t watch that one in the UK.
The following evening, two Hammers will take to the field in the Nations League, the aforementioned Fabianski and Snodgrass, both of their matches kick-off at the same time of 7:45 and as is the case with the whole Nations League, will be shown live on Sky Sports Football.
The ‘keeper is up against Portugal in League A Group 3, while the winger faces a trip to Israel in League C Group 1, with Scotland, whilst Friday night is all about Arnautovic.
He is the only member of Pellegrini’s squad playing on that evening as Austria host Northern Ireland in Nations League, League B Group 3 in Vienna at 7:45, West Ham fans will have to wait until Sunday for the next European Hammer.
However, Saturday is the day Masuaku could be getting an International feather is his cap, with DR Congo hosting Zimbabwe in Africa Cup of Nations Qualifying Group G, it gets underway at 6:30 PM BST and is not being broadcasted live in the United Kingdom.
Much like Thursday, it’s the turn of Fabianski and Snodgrass a day later, the later clashes with the Portuguese in a Hampden Park friendly at 5 PM, live on Sky Sports Football.
Less than three hours into the future, Fabianski’s Poland kick off against Italy in the Nations League, the last of the International action before a bumper Tuesday that brings it all to an end.
Three Hammers are in action on this closing night, one of them in a friendly, with Arnautovic and Austria travelling to Denmark for a 7:45 PM kick-off, not on TV in the UK.
Masuaku’s DR Congo will then face Zimbabwe away from home in AFCON qualifying at 7:30 PM and finally, Yarmolenko gets his slice of Nations League pie when Ukraine welcome the Czech Republic in League B Group 1 at, you guessed it, 7:45.
While Balbuena and Paraguay do not have any games to attend to, it will be a very important time for the centre-back and his compatriots, as they get to know their new head coach Osorio and prepare for a long and tough Copa America qualification campaign.
So, now that you have been given the full lowdown on where and when the international Hammers are taking to the field during this international break, want to follow their progress aside from watching them on television?
Well, you can by sticking close to our Twitter account @WestHamMatters_, where we will be keeping you updated throughout the International break and of course, check back in here in seven days for a full West Ham International break review.