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When know how is needed here’s the Iron for the job


By CandH’s top blogger Allen Cummings


The good news for West Ham is that Michail Antonio is: “back on the grass training” according to David Moyes, who also added at his latest presser: “we’ll hopefully get him back as quick as we can.”

That’s music to all our ears! The not so good news is that Arthur Masuaku has to wait at least another fortnight before any kind of resumption of training can begin for him!

In a way Arthur’s absence has caused Moyes as big a headache as that of Michail. The manager has reverted to a back four in recent games, instead of his preferred back five, with Masuaku providing the effective attacking width coupled with defensive cover down the left in front of Aaron Cresswell.

But the enforced change has meant the team have lost the balance and defensive solidarity we were showing in our impressive start to the season.

After Wednesday’s 3-0 defeat by Chelsea there have been calls for Moyes to revert to a back five again for the next game against Brighton and Hove Albion. But who would be best suited in the Masuaku role?

Could it be the perfect opportunity for Robert Snodgrass to find a way back into the team? Like Arthur, Snoddy is a natural left-footer. He can cross on the run without having the need to check back onto a favoured foot, a problem we have seen with both Pablo Fornals and Said Benrahma operating on the left, both being predominantly right footed.

We know playing as a wing back can be a physically demanding role, but even as a 33-year-old Snodgrass still has a great ‘engine’ keeping him going.

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If there is a criticism of Arthur it’s the fact he tended to lose concentration at times and was prone to making wrong choices. Snodgrass is far more worldly wise – he has years of experience  and carries a shrewd footballing head on his shoulders.

His know how would compensate for any pace he may have lost over the years. I seem to remember we had a player many years ago who was considered ‘slow’ in some quarters – that didn’t seem to hinder him!

There have been suggestions that Moyes could bring Issa Diop into the back three, releasing Cress to go and play wing back. But Aaron has been in such impressive form in his back three role, even being touted for an England call-up, I see no advantage to shifting him unnecessarily.

Most people felt Manuel Lanzini would start on Monday – but injury curtailed that and Moyes went for Mark Noble instead.  I felt that was the wrong choice!

Snodgrass would have been a better option on the night in my opinion. While he might not have the delicate craft of Manu, Snoddy can still pick a pass and clip a ball with great accuracy, and has more natural attacking instincts than the skipper.

Plus the fact he is still an excellent striker of a dead ball. With the aerial power we now possess in the side – making best use of corners and free kicks is vital in the search for goals.

Snodgrass has waited patiently for his opportunity this season – but being the excellent professional he is we haven’t heard him moaning and groaning or hitting social media in a huff.

He’s just stuck around, supported the team, both on and off the pitch. Snoddy deserves a chance to show what he can do in the wing-back role – and David Moyes knows full well should he give Snodgrass the nod he can count on the scot to give it his best shot.

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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

11 comments on “When know how is needed here’s the Iron for the job

  1. God no !A fan favourite but no pace can’t beat his man.Opposition walk past him and Noble.That the manager gives him 2 mins at the end of the games says it all.Like Noble 10-15 mins at the end of the match ,is a role for both of them.

  2. Ridiculous scenario having Snodgrass as a wing back. Full/wing back is the most energy sapping place in the team with speed essential. Snodgrass is not the best defensively anyway even as a winger or forward. Johnson is our most able followed by Fornals who is scoring enough from foward positions when put in. I’d use his energy and instinct to get forward as a 2nd bet to Johnson who has played well there for the u23’s.
    Not Snodgrass please

    • Arthur’s value is he is naturally left footed and can deliver a cross on the run. Neither Fornals or Johnson can do that – checking back stops the forward momentum. Masuaku’s defending is questionable – Snoddy can’t be any worse surely. He wouldn’t let anyone down.

  3. No no no mange tout. If we’re going to play old farts I’d rather we bought back Arnie and payet. What a double swoop that would be.

  4. Snodgrass would be interesting. He can defend and draws plenty of fouls. Perfect, no, but better than what we have seen.

  5. He hasn’t played in a W. H. I. L. E. So no. Just like in an old Deep Purple song: no, no, no…
    A great character though.

    • Would you really prefer the ‘snake’ Payet and the ‘judas’ Arnie? After how they behaved. Snoddy may not be blessed with their skills, but as a decent, honourable human being and respected professional he leaves both of them in his wake.

      • Payet? Arnautovic? They are not at the club, are they? Why should I prefer them, then? I don’t intend to compare players. The fact remains: Snodgrass hasn’t played serious football in several months.

  6. Opinions opinions, shame on so called fans showing such disrespect to those that have given so much to the west ham team, I for one was screaming at the screen during the Chelsea match to get snodgrass or yarmolenko on, change the shape, get the damn fairy elephant off the pitch, Moyes reluctance to sub off Haller is a tactical joke, it serves no purpose to continue with a player who’s footballing skills are no better than David James, the excuse as to not having anyone on the bench to play that position is mute when the player on the pitch can’t play that position in the first place, loosing every tackle, giving the ball straight to the opposition or fouling at every turn all in the hope that he’ll score one of his wonder goals,ridiculous, Moyes sub efforts come far too late in almost every game & his choice of players to remove is baffling, Hallers efforts in the 1st half were far & few between & none helped the hammers, he should have been subbed at half time, moving Fornals up front & benrahma into left wing, quite literally any other player in the forward position would have been more effective, Haller has no ball control skills of note, he lunges into every tackle more often than not fouling yet when he feels the slightest touch he falls like a sack of spuds, opposition defenders can play freely because he offers no threat, literally no pressing from him at all, to allow Haller to play the full 90 minutes plus stoppage time is Moyes biggest mistake, Diop would do a better job in the forward position than Haller, yes that’s a joke but it still has more truth than believing Haller is anything like an attacking option, with Haller up front every game becomes a 10 man team with Haller helping the opposition, his mistakes lead to attacks & goals more so than Noble’s, giving him so much time on the pitch is only chipping away at any financial value he is, the constant mistakes & poor effort isn’t going to bring any valid offer when it’s time to offload him.

  7. At this moment, I think Snoddy is a good alternative for the left wing back position. He’ll run himself into the ground and I imagine would be better in defence than any of the other options. There must be a reason Moyes hasn’t tried him though.

    I think, based on comments recently, Bowen will be the new Antonio/Arnautovich, moved from the wing into the strikers role. That would mean Yarmo or Snoddy on the right (if it happens) until a new guy comes in, seeing as Moyes likes inverted wingers/wide midfielders. But until then, Snoddy as wing back works in my mind.

  8. Snodgrass as a wing back ?

    Have some of you been on the mulled wine already 😂

    Who can play left wing back with masuaku out.

    Er.. how about CRESSWELL?! An actual left sided defender who can cross and get forward , and play one of our cbs in the back 3.

    Snodgrass 😂

    What a crazy idea that is.

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