West Ham are barely keeping their heads above water, a completely insipid performance against the Champions sees confidence levels back at rock bottom. As good as Manchester City are, West Ham did not lay a glove on them, the team’s lack of intensity and purpose was picked up by Match of the Day and several other media outlets, it was a worrying performance at this point in the season and has thrown up a number of question marks over the players and the manager.
Our defence is a complete shambles, we have conceded 3 or more goals in 15 games this season. a remarkable statistic that contributes to West Ham conceding the most goals per game of any team in the professional game in England. What is incredibly frustrating about that statistic is how negatively we play, to try and counteract our obvious frailty in that regard, our passive approach is merely inviting more pressure on the weakest part of our team.
The defensive issues are nothing new, they were masked in 2015-2016 because of our goal-scoring ability but even then, we conceded 2 goals or more in 9 of the last 12 games of that season, this just isn’t sustainable. I feel our problems stem from the lack of identity around both the club and the team, for want of a better way of putting it, we don’t know what we are or how we are trying to play, we don’t have a style as such, we are just negative and hoping that Arnautovic will pull something out of the bag for us. Moyes has done a decent given the circumstances but I now strongly feel we need to look and plan for the next five years, to keep him would be a mistake and I feel would lead us to a similar situation next year.
I am starting to worry that maybe we are massively overrating some of our players and that in fact, they aren’t as good as they appear to be, they certainly aren’t putting in cohesive performances. To stay in the Premier League is everything but having that ‘survive at all costs’ approach makes for dull mismatches against the bigger sides, where you got the feeling the team had an eye on the more winnable fixtures against Leicester and Everton.
It’s just so depressing at the moment, the team are so weak and feeble, you look at teams like Burnley, Bournemouth, Brighton and Newcastle, all of whom have far weaker squads but they all play to plan and have clear identity and most important of all they are giving the fans something to shout about. Let’s not forget this is meant to be fun! I would rather see us lose a game trying to win rather than the complete surrender we have witnessed in the past two games.
We can beat Leicester and I really feel we need to, I can’t bear the thought of having to beat Sam Allardyce’s Everton to stay up on the final day, the sooner the season ends the better but make no mistake, if we survive or not the club seriously needs to look at where we are headed. When the board promised a move to the next level, I don’t think anyone considered that it could be a move downwards.
Let’s hope they can put in a big performance on Saturday, a feeble performance will further damage already brittle confidence. We need a big performance here.