West Ham captain Mark Noble has demanded that central defenders Angelo Ogbonna and Issa Diop step up their game in training, according to The Athletic.
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The Hammers have struggled for form so far in the Premier League, winning just three of their 11 games, which leaves them 13th in the table.
Their main weakness has undoubtedly come in defence, conceding 17 goals in 11 games, including three to Newcastle who had previously failed to score more than once all season.
Ogbonna and Diop have been mainstays in the side, the Italian has started eight games in the league while the Frenchman has played every minute. With neither involved in their country’s international set-up, the report suggests Noble demanded more from the two on the first day back after last month’s international break while trying to raise the tempo at Rush Green.
Clearly, the defence has been a problem of late. 13 goals have been conceded in the last six games across all competitions, so it’s easy to see why Noble – as captain – would be attempting to address any issues there.
Still, perhaps the biggest issue at the London Stadium has been the injury to first-choice goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski.
The Polish international suffered a torn hip muscle during the Hammers’ 2-2 draw with Bournemouth, and is expected to miss a total of two months.
His replacement, Roberto, has failed to live up to the standards of the former Arsenal shot-stopper and was criticised by Kevin Nolan in the Sun via HITC.
Fabianski made 148 saves in the Premier League last season (per the league’s official website), more than any other goalkeeper in the competition, finishing seven ahead of Cardiff’s Neil Etheridge.
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