West Ham have a new underrated hero in Emerson

West Ham have a new underrated hero in Emerson Palmeiri after his goal against Chelsea.

The left-wing-back has been in outstanding form in recent weeks and is improving with every game that goes by.

With Hammers boss David Moyes is using the back five formation more often and Emerson is reaping the rewards.

West Ham fans should not underestimate the importance of Emerson.

West Ham wing-back Emerson Palmeiri

Emerson is fast becoming increasingly vital to West Ham’s success and setup

Him notching his first goal against the club he joined for a fee of around £10million in the summer was inevitable, yet it is not just his scuffed finish past Kepa Arrizabalaga as to why he deserves so much praise.

The use of a back five has seen an upturn in results and it allows West Ham to press a lot better. Absolutely key to the change in tactics is the Italian with Emerson is the only natural left-sided wing-back in the squad.

Using the formation effectively requires huge emphasis on the wide men in the defence contributing in the attack with a player less in attacking midfield.

Emerson is a direct runner with the ball and is actually fairly press resistant with the ball at his feet, helping West Ham get out of tight areas when being pressed, we saw this a lot against Newcastle with his close control and technical skill.

The 28-year-old is also an excellent crosser, something needed with Aaron Cresswell out of the side. Emerson delivered the ball that led to Tomas Soucek‘s unfortunately ruled out winner against the Blues but that wicked delivery will cause teams issues and give Gianluca Scamacca something to feed off when he returns from injury.

Additionally, it’s important for wing-back to get in at the back post, Emerson’s goal at the weekend was a perfect example of that. With one less attacker up the pitch, a late difficult to track run from deep, coming in at the back stick, is vital to sustaining attacks and in this case, scoring.

Emerson has the huge job of being like a winger in attack, while also defending and getting back in to assist Moyes’ tough to break down team shape. Defensively is his weakness put he put a number of tough tackles in versus Chelsea and he is getting better with every game that passes in a West Ham shirt.

Moyes even praised him for his consistency prior to the weekend, and as Said Benrahma knows all too well, you have to be serious special to get praise from the manager.

Emerson is proving crucial to the new-look West Ham we have seen since the turn of the year. There is still a long way to go when it comes to moving up the league away from relegation but keeping a fit and firing Emerson could not be more important.

Plus, he is best mates with Lucas Paqueta, who before his injury, looks to be finding his feet at West Ham – surely it is no coincidence the two at Lyon last year are playing so well and more points are being picked up.