Pellegrini’s long term midfield dilemma


Terry Westley fully expects Manuel Pellegrini to have whittled down his midfield options by January.

But the former academy chief –  who the boss very well in their time at the club together – expects him to hold on to them all until the winter at least.

The reality is of course that there will have to be a cull at some timewhich could form a dilemma  for as Terry explains: “There will be players who will see themselves spending too much time on the bench and there will need to be departures as a result.”

He doesn’t believe any of that will cause Pelle to ignore the youngsters claiming that one of the manager’s biggest strengths is his determination to involve them once they are good enough.

He used  Grady Diangana as an example saying: “The manager loves the freshness of youth which sees them doing what comes naturally dribbling at and taking on defences.

“But then they have to go to the next level – they have to go on and become Premier League disciplined. Nathan Holland is another like Grady and I’m looking forward to his breakthrough.”

The former academy chief – now Technical adviser to the J League – loved his time at the Hammers saying: “It was tough following a legend like Tony Carr but this was a new era for the club and I think we did ok.

“I’m proud of what we achieved and now I will be watching the best prospects around in Japan and no doubt will be tempted to let Manuel know what I have found out here.”

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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


  • JRS says:

    We are always linked w Chilean players & Pellegrini has openly talked about trying to bring in countrymen like Leverkusen bloke 31 who turned him down. Now linked w Medel again who I like is actually better CB cover for us then Maripan IMO & better for Chile as CB. Maripan is big strong but slow can’t pass. Medel is a top passer has pace & can play high line but for midfleid one Chilean player haven been linked with & I hope is on our list is Erick Pulgar. At 25 a good age he is 6’2 great defensivly physical, range of passing moves play fwd, set pieces, longer range & dead ball goals he is all action mid played half half CM for Bologna w 6 goals 2 assists he was huge for them. Caught Roma & other Serie A clubs attention bc Copa performances where he was very good.
    Pulgar only has a €10m buyout clause which us a snip & perfect partner for Rice to offer more protection but also move playw passing & a goal threat from range or set pieces.
    This seems like a No-Brainer to me w Bologna wanted Obaing & value at same amount his old Sampdoira manager is there. Pulhar you would imgaine would like to play for Pellegrini & in PL which he is well suited for.
    Even if w gave Obaing & £2-5m we would get a £25m plus player w years left to play. Him Rice & Formals is really something to build on & have Lanzini Snodgrass & Wilshere if can stay fit too.
    Not high wages either & would offer that well rounded CM we need IMO to protect back & get fwd.

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