Friday 14 April 2023

Aguerd to left back may be the secret to thwarting the Gooners

The Hammers have had a largely disappointing season which has left them on the edge of the relegation zone with 9 games to play.

Despite huge investment in a host of big signings, the team just haven't found any consistent form. The biggest problem has been scoring goals but in reality, Moyes' men haven't created enough chances and typically work from 40% possession.

In recent years, massed defending looking for turnover ball has delivered great results for Moyes, but sides have learned to be patient and avoid getting caught in possession. As a result, the Hammers often look disjointed in possession.

While the defensive stats suggest that Moyes men have performed well at the back, West ham have struggled to link defence with midfield to feed the (usually) lone forward. 

This lack of fluidity in part relates to the inconsistency in centre back selection - Moyes has fielded 14 different CB combinations this season, using Zouma, Aguerd, Dawson, Ogbonna, Kehrer and Johnson along the way. Even Declan Rice had to drop back into CB for one match where we had no CBs left to bring on!

Injuries have been a big factor as Moyes has tried to nurse Zouma and Aguerd along. Now Moyes has the headache of choosing between Aguerd, Zouma and Ogbonna - 3 at the back is one possibility but with Cresswell slowing down and Emerson a sort of Masuaku-like hybrid left sided player, maybe it's time to push Aguerd to left back?

Aguerd has pace and is blessed with a deft touch. Moreover, he has plenty of experience at left back during his time at Rennes. It would be a bold step from Moyes, especially as our next opponents have the almost unmarkable Saka marauding down the left wing, but it could be a master stroke! 

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