Despite boasting a woeful defensive record this season, some pieces of the puzzle are coming together for West Ham United.
Indeed, it doesn’t take a genius to assume Manuel Pellegrini may be looking to upgrade over many positions in his side, yet the right-back spot is one he surely isn’t touching anytime soon.
While Pablo Zabaleta’s ageing nature might’ve caused some headaches, Ryan Fredericks is working wonders to consolidate the role as his. The 26-year-old’s given some inspired performances in recent weeks, proving himself as a vital cog to keep the Hammers defence in check.
Granted that West Ham haven’t kept many clean-sheets with him playing, but the 26-year-old’s insane work-rate has helped keep his side in games. Amazingly, he’s rarely allowed wingers to outsmart him and quickly adapted to life in the Premier League. The right-back’s averaged 2.7 tackles, 2.8 clearances per game(stats via WhoScored), being a diligent figure hunting down the ball whenever necessary.
Not only have his defensive solidity bloomed over in recent weeks, his heroics against Southampton probably sealed the right-back slot. Fredericks put in his best performance in a Hammers shirt, being absolutely everyone to avert danger. The 26-year-old made 4 clearances, won 10 aerial challenges, made 4 tackles and successfully completed 4 dribbles (stats via Fotmob) in an amazing display.
To top off his insane performance, he proved his attacking prowess by scoring his first Premier League goal in a special way. By dancing past half of Southampton’s defence, Fredericks netted a majestic goal, attaining fan-favourite status among fans and solidifying his regular role under Pellegrini next season.
West Ham fans, do you think Fredericks deserves a starting spot next season? Join the discussion by commenting below…
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