Noel Whelan believes that the majority of West Ham United players have not been mentally strong enough in recent weeks and has accused them of not putting their “body on the line” (Football Insider).
He suggests that most of the Hammers squad have been a little bit too weak of late, including in their recent game against Brighton & Hove Albion where they threw away a 3-1 lead and ended up drawing 3-3 (BBC Sport).
There were just two players who he suggested were digging in and committing everything for the cause; Robert Snodgrass and Mark Noble.
The Hammers are in the midst of a relegation battle at the moment, and, having dropped points against the Seagulls, they now sit in the bottom three with just 13 games left to play (BBC Sport).
When discussing West Ham’s capitulation against Brighton, Whelan told Football Insider: “We talk about character and mental strength, you have got to have that. I did question whether West Ham had enough players who know what it is all about at West Ham. Who knows what it is like to play for the club; what is required to be a West Ham player.
“The fans demand fight, character and mental strength. They seem a little bit weak at times. They do not know how to hold onto a lead.
Would you take Rafael Benitez at West Ham?
“There are great players there but sometimes your talent is not the first thing in question. It is your attitude, your work rate, your desire, putting your body on the line. I do not think they have that now, they used to. Noble has that, Snodgrass definitely has that. Some of the players need to show more fight.”
Whelan certainly has a point here. The Hammers have signed some extremely talented players recently, such as Pablo Fornals, Felipe Anderson and Sebastien Haller, but are they showing enough fight at the moment? Their results would suggest not having won just one of their last eight league outings (Transfermarkt).
However, whilst Noble and Snodgrass may not be as naturally gifted as some of their team mates, there is no doubt that they are giving everything for the cause and desperately trying to help West Ham avoid relegation.
Indeed you only have to look at the game against Brighton when Snodgrass was involved in all three goals, scoring two and assisting one (Transfermarkt) to show that he is up for the fight. The same can be said for Noble, who made four tackles and won six ground duels in that same match (SofaScore).
If the east London outfit are to get out of trouble, then more of their players need to follow the lead of these two players. If they don’t, then relegation looks extremely likely.
West Ham fans, are your players doing enough at the moment? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below…
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