Never change a winning team, except when your sub makes an instant impact? If that isn’t the saying, hopefully, David Moyes goes against the old saying.
A nervous win was ridden out by West Ham against Aston Villa this past match week and it came on the back of some big changes. Michail Antonio was injected into the starting XI in a shock move, but in a not-so-shocking turn of events, he was apparently rushed back and he has a hurt hamstring yet again.
The real surprise was the halftime subs made by David Moyes. He abandoned his 5-2-3 formation and gambled on a four at the back system that implemented two wingers and a central attacking midfielder, removing Arthur Masuaku for Said Benrahma and level out the team. Benrahma’s 20-second assist to the game-winning goal proved this was the right move.
What team and what formation will we see against a Manchester United team that is unpredictable yet dangerous at all times? It should be a familiar set up, but some change should be expected in the attack.
Here is the predicted team to face off against Manchester United:
Coufal – Balbuena – Ogbonna – Cresswell – Masuaku
Rice – Soucek
Bowen – Haller – Benrahma
Bench: Randolph, Johnson, Diop, Noble, Lanzini, Fornals, Yarmolenko
It is time for Said Benrahma to get a start for West Ham, and what better event than Manchester United at the London Stadium with fans finally back in attendance? The circumstances are just peripheral, though, because Benrahma has earned his place in the starting team, especially beside Sebastien Haller.
It is no coincidence that Pablo Fornals has found chemistry with the unorthodox style of centre-forward play Michial Antonio exudes. It shouldn’t be a massive surprise then to see that he isn’t able to gel as well with Haller, who plays a more conventional striker style. Still, the dynamic attacker who has versatility should be benched to allow Benrahma to start.
Outside of that change, Moyes doesn’t have much to do with his team selection. The defensive form has remained one of the Premier League’s best and he can ride this formation, hopefully, to another three points. Nothing major, just a chance earned by the newest Hammers.