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Bilic hands out heavy team selection clue

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Slaven Bilic has given a big clue into his team selection thinking for a game at Palace which he admits “determines his own situation” dubbing it “massively important..”

He declared: “Mental strength is most ­important thing. That’s why you need leaders, those kind of senators in your team. We’ve enough of them, a few captains of national teams.”

Such a description would describe international skippers Winston Reid, Cheik Kouyate along with hardened PL pros Mark Noble, Pablo Zabaleta, Andy Carroll, Chicharito and Michail Antonio (if fit) and  Joe Hart.

That would leave three other places to be filled with probably Aaron Cresswell, Jose Fonte and Manuel Lanzini getting the shout.

Discussing his selection issues and the match itself Slav illustrated his point by pointing to the spat between Danny Rose and Mark Noble on Wednesday night.

Noble was dropped for the previous two league games but that confrontation may have sparked the second half revival.

Bilic said: “Was it a coincidence or was it more important than the first goal? Nobody knows. Maybe it helped.

“Mark Noble has that in him. He’s the captain who loves to be the captain. He is Mr West Ham, has been all his life, and he is first for that.”

Bilic did not play down the significance of today’s visit to Selhurst park.

“I know our situation,” he said. “Our situation ­determines my situation. It’s a massively important game.”

“Mental strength is most ­important thing,” he said. “That’s why you need leaders, those kind of senators in your team.  “We’ve people who won major trophies with their national teams or with ­previous clubs.

We’ve a good mixture of them and young ­players who will hopefully achieve what their colleagues achieved.

“That mental strength is key today, especially in the Premier League when you have a ­feeling it’s like big brother, you are there 24/7, on the radar, every move being analysed.”

So possibly – based on his comments – the Hammers look likely to line up like this: Hart, Zaba, Reid, Fonte, Cresswell; Noble, Kouyate, Antonio, Lanzini, Chicharito, Carroll

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About Hugh5outhon1895

Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!" Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon

9 comments on “Bilic hands out heavy team selection clue

  1. Not a bad guess, there. And, understandable sentiments from Bilic. But, how do you deny Ayew’s claims after his performance on wednesday? – & I say that as one of his biggest critics, generally. Also, do you ignore some of the other Wembley heroes claims ; &, how can you do so ? Adrian deserves a place, IMO ; & there are others, too. Anyway, that’s Bilic’s job; & one for which he will get plenty of criticism for , not to mention the sack, if he gets it wrong !

  2. Ayew was also captain or vice captain of Ghana I think he will play, I believe he would be better playing Fernandes And Rice than Reid and a n other but let’s wait and see COYI!!!

  3. I was going to say…. Ogbonna has also been with juventus and Italy. He won the title with juventus.
    So he’s also one that could start.
    I think for this game you go 5 at the back, because that’s the formation that seems to be working.

  4. Ayew did well on Wednesday evening, we need someone who will fight in the box, while Carroll seems to have completely dried up, could not believe it once when we broke and Cresswell put a superb cross into the box, we had one player in the box, and Carroll was still in midfield, we have missed someone putting crosses into the box.

    Not convinced Hart should think of himself as number one, this game we need to win, and I feel more confident with Adrian, he has West Ham in his belly, much more control than Hart.

  5. Bilic will do same as again , by that I mean he will play his favs, zabba fonts cresswell Reid noble Carroll , palace,s zaha will leave these players in his wake with his pace and then there’s Townsend ?? Bilic needs to get this right , palace are bottom and will test us today IMO , we must win , a draw isn’t good enough as we need to start getting points and move to safer ground , its gonna be interesting to see the side he puts out, and even more interesting to see if we can get it tactically right , ie like Carroll meeting a cross instead of supplying it ?
    😉 coyi , turn up !!!!

    • Yep , Bilic has not got the balls or brain to out Noble and Carroll . Same old same old and another step towards Championship . COYI

  6. I would have Ogbonna in place of Reid, and Obiang in place of Koyate who has been well below his standards of last season.

  7. Three or four of those who showed true desire, commitment and determination in the second half on Wednesday deserve a start, if they’re not knackered – Adrian, Fernandes, Noble and Ayew spring to mind. I worry how Zabs will deal with their pace out wide, as others have suggested, and surely they will target him, especially in the box where he can be crude in his challenges. With big central defenders faced again, Ayew and .chic will offer movement and create space for Lanzini and Antonio so I’d start with those two up top. Carroll and Arnie can be brought on if a plan B is needed. But whatever side Slav picks, a performance and three points please! Let’s pull clear at last.

  8. Adrian should play …. NOBLE should not . He contributes nothing and slows down the play . Too slow to close down or get back . Said it all before but he really is terrible . An average performance against a weakened team is about as good as it will ever get . He is not good enough for squad on Match days . COYI

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