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Paqueta’s Midfield Shift Bolsters West Ham

The Irons addressed their midfield concerns with a tactical tweak that proved effective in their crucial Premier League clash against Tottenham Hotspur. The absence of suspended midfielder Edson Alvarez, a recurring issue for manager David Moyes this season, had left a significant void in the centre of the park.

Throughout the season, Moyes struggled to find a suitable replacement for the defensively sound Alvarez. Even the return of midfielder Kalvin Phillips failed to solve the problem, as Phillips’ recent dip in form left the manager with limited options.

In a surprising tactical move, Moyes opted to shift the roles of James Ward-Prowse and Lucas Paqueta. Paqueta, known for his attacking flair with the Brazilian national team, was deployed in a deeper, holding midfield position.
While not a natural defensive midfielder in the mould of Alvarez, Paqueta offered a different kind of control and bravery on the ball. His willingness to take risks in possession paid off, providing West Ham with a much-needed foothold in midfield. There was a brief scare when a risky pass from Paqueta almost led to a Tottenham chance, but overall, his influence was positive.

Back in the old routine

With Paqueta anchoring the midfield, Ward-Prowse was able to thrive in a more advanced role. He injected energy into the West Ham attack and disrupted Tottenham’s play, even creating a decent scoring opportunity for Michail Antonio.
The newfound midfield partnership between Paqueta and Ward-Prowse was on display during West Ham’s best chance of the game. Paqueta’s interception in midfield led to a perfectly weighted pass from Ward-Prowse, but Antonio’s resulting shot was saved by Tottenham goalkeeper Vicario.

Paqueta playing a deeper role

West Ham also avoided repeating a crucial mistake from their recent defeat to Newcastle United. Unlike the previous game where Antonio’s substitution late in the second half coincided with Newcastle’s fightback, Moyes kept the experienced forward on the pitch. Antonio’s physical presence was crucial in helping West Ham maintain control of the midfield battle

 

 

4 comments on “Paqueta’s Midfield Shift Bolsters West Ham

  1. “West Ham also avoided repeating a crucial mistake from their recent defeat to Newcastle United. Unlike the previous game where Antonio’s substitution late in the second half coincided with Newcastle’s fightback, Moyes kept the experienced forward on the pitch.”

    Not only that but Moyes was too petrified to make ANY substitutions at all! Towards the end he did get Danny Ings ready but he must have thought better of it because Ings sat down again. I hope the nightmares that Moyes must now be having over substitutions don’t last too long because the players won’t last too long either if they don’t get rotated or rested!

  2. To be fair, it was a good night for Moyes tactically. He dealt with the neat tactics Ange threw at us. Of course it would be nice to be proactive rather than reactive with such things, but credit where credit’s due.

    What I would’ve liked to see though, when Paqueta moved into the CDM role, was for Ings to come up in the 10 role that JWP then occupied. I thought he did really well there when brought on against Sheff Utd and would’ve worked nicely in support of Antonio. Ings isn’t a 9, but he can be an effective 10.

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