This article forms part of our What Does The Future Hold series, which is where Football Transfer Tavern takes a look at what potentially lies ahead for a player, manager or club.
Manuel Lanzini has not been quite the same following that serious anterior cruciate ligament injury he picked up.
The 27-year-old is yet to score a goal in the Premier League this season and has had further injury issues. His diminishing influence has resulted in manager David Moyes calling him out, with the West Ham boss demanding more from his Argentinian playmaker.
“We are really crying out for Manuel Lanzini to return and come back to the level he was at,” Moyes was quoted as saying by the Evening Standard back in January following a 4-1 loss to Leicester City.
It will be interesting to see how long Moyes remains patient with Lanzini as West Ham continue to battle relegation. Given their predicament, they really cannot afford to have any passengers in the team. That being said, the attacking midfielder is an individual with too much quality to be discarded so quickly.
Despite his struggles, he has still been one of the east London club’s most creative sources this season. Averaging 1.5 key passes per league game, no player in Moyes’ squad is completing more (via WhoScored).
The Argentina international is also one of the best dribblers at the London Stadium. He has averaged 1.7 dribbles per game in the current Premier League campaign — the third-best average in the squad — showing his ability to carry the ball and get his team up the pitch.
Taking that into account, and with his contract not up until 2023, there is still clearly a place for Lanzini in east London.
Relegation to the Championship could change the picture entirely, but as a Premier League outfit, West Ham need a technical ace like the former River Plate man in their side and should be looking to keep hold of him — even amid his current struggles.
West Ham fans, what does the future hold for Lanzini? Tell us what you think in the comment section below!
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