Sports FOOTBALL West Ham are in the top four contenders?

West Ham are in the top four contenders?

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The predicted position of the Guardian authors 8th (Note: this is not necessarily Jacob Steinberg’s prediction, but an average of our authors’ advice)

Position last season 7th

Odds of winning the league (via Oddschecker) 150-1

prospects

The goal is to compete again for a place in the top four. The question is whether West Ham have become stale. They blew the imagination with reaching the semi-finals of the Europa League last season, but the small team struggled to cope with the extra workload and David Moyes spent the summer trying to improve quality in several positions.

On a positive note, West Ham have reduced their reliance on Mikhail Antonio, who looked tired in the second half of last season. The striker has had no competition for the spot for the past 18 months, but the arrival of Gianluca Camacchi from Sassuolo gives Moyes’ attack a fresh look. A tall and powerful striker, Scamacca scored 16 goals in Serie A last season and made his way to the Italy national team. The 23-year-old has all the makings of a fan favorite, although the recent history of attacking players moving up to the Premier League from Serie A is not very encouraging.

Ready for Premier League 2022-2023: West Ham – video

However, the striking situation is not the only problem. Moyes needs more from Said Benrahma and Nikola Vlasic in attacking midfield. He’ll be hoping Flynn Downes can help overworked Thomas Soucek and Declan Rice in central midfield. As for defense, not everything is so smooth. Nayef Agerd, the Moroccan centre-back who signed for Rennes for £30m, could be out for three months after undergoing ankle surgery. Angelo Ogbonna has just returned from a long knee injury. Issa Diop wants to leave and Kurt Zouma was injured last season. So another big season for Craig “Ballon” Dawson?

Of course, there is no need to panic just yet. West Ham have made rapid progress over the past two years. But have the opponents begun to work them out? Moyes, who pissed off his players after losing to Brighton on the final day forcing West Ham to accept a place in the European Conference League, has been sounding a bit impatient lately. It could be a test campaign.

Manager

Moyes has worked wonders since returning to the London stadium. He turned a struggling team into a top 6 contender, drew a previously disgruntled crowd, and sent the club on a dramatic European adventure. Gone are the days when West Ham were considered a slacker. Moyes made them resilient and unbeatable, but he also managed to make his team interesting and capable of scoring anyone. The perception of the Scot as a tactical dinosaur was paraded as nonsense. Moyes has grown as a manager and is busy building a solid culture at West Ham. However, there are slight concerns about the recent hiring of some members of the club. There have been some questionable signings of late and West Ham need Moyes to be sharper in the transfer market if they are to maintain their growth.

West Ham manager David Moyes during a club media day. Photo: Simon Dael/Shutterstock

transfer coup

West Ham have spent 18 months with Mikhail Antonio as their only senior striker since the sale of Sebastian Haller to Ajax in January 2021. This has put Antonio and his infamous wobbly hamstrings under a lot of pressure, so the arrival of Gianluca Scamacca from Sassuolo in a £35.5m deal is a huge boost. The Italy striker has been a target for Paris Saint-Germain this summer. West Ham will hope he looks more like Paolo Di Canio than Simone Zaza.

Impact of the World Cup

Most of the West Ham squad could rest during the World Cup. Rice is a guaranteed choice for England, Jarrod Bowen hopes to stay in Gareth Southgate’s plans and Agerd is a key player for Morocco. Pablo Fornals also hopes to break into the Spanish national team, while Alphonse Areola could represent France. However, Tomas Soucek and Vladimir Kufal will stay at home due to the Czech Republic’s failure to qualify.

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Alternative rides during the World Cup

Anyone who wants to reminisce about London 2012 can register for the Half Marathon at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park on November 27th. As a bonus, you can limp down to Westfield to do some Christmas shopping once the race is over.

Hot Selling Shirts

Rice is the obvious favorite of the public. The 23-year-old has developed into one of the best midfielders in the world and is set to take on even more responsibilities following the retirement of Mark Noble. Worryingly, though, Rice has no plans to emulate Noble by becoming a one-club player. The England international has no plans to renew his current contract and is keen to play for the club in the Champions League. Chelsea, who released Rice when he was 14, will be closely monitoring the situation. It’s no secret that he’s unlikely to stay at West Ham beyond next summer.

Careerist

Benrahma may not be a regular starter, but his social media play isn’t anything to be concerned about. The Algerian winger leads the way on Instagram with an impressive two million followers. Fans can follow the reaction after the match (caption example: “Sunday win and three points”) and sullen shots of Benrahma living his best life away from the pitch. Sign in to see Benrahma smiling in the car. Scroll down to see how he makes the most of his jet ski vacation. Keep taking pictures of him trying on the hat.

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If West Ham were a Netflix documentary…

The cameras catch an irritated Moyes pining for Tony Hibbert after Benrahma goes too far with tricks and stunts during practice. Players are wondering if a new signing will show up. The answer comes soon. “I have unfinished business at West Ham,” says Alessandro Diamanti, 39, after leaving Western United’s A-League team and an emotional return to east London.

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