The Athletic’s West Ham United correspondent Roshane Thomas was critical of Lukasz Fabianski as the Hammers capitulated against Brighton on Sunday.
The lowdown: Europa League missed
For large parts of the day, it appeared as though David Moyes’ side would be competing in the Europa League once again, as Manchester United’s defeat to Crystal Palace opened the door for the Hammers to move into sixth if they could win at the Amex Stadium.
Having reached the semi-final this term, the Irons will undoubtedly be disappointed to miss out and be left with Europa Conference League football, particularly having taken the lead through Michail Antonio on the south coast.
However, goals from Pascal Gross, Danny Welbeck and Joel Veltman punished a lacklustre West Ham performance, and one man came in for criticism for his role in the defeat…
The latest: Thomas slams Fabianski over Veltman goal
Taking to Twitter, Thomas lamented the part that veteran goalkeeper Fabianski played in Brighton’s equaliser as Veltman fired the home side level early in the second half.
Giving updates throughout the match, the journalist initially posted: “1-1, Veltman scores for Brighton. Fabianski could have done better. #WHUFC”
Despite being informed on the social media platform of a deflection on the strike, the journalist doubled down on his assessment soon after: “I missed the deflection. Still should have saved it though.”
The verdict: A sign of things to come?
Few could question the continued quality of Fabianski this season, as the experienced Pole made 38 appearances across all competitions for the Hammers and was their seventh-best player in the Premier League according to WhoScored metrics.
This display was far from a peak performance from the stopper, though, as the 57-cap stalwart gave away possession 17 times and misplaced 16 passes and 16 long balls whilst earning a lowly 6.40 Sofascore rating on an afternoon to forget.
Having watched Alphonse Areola perform so admirably in Europe this term, and with the Frenchman potentially staying in east London next season, perhaps there is a decision to be made by Moyes regarding who should be the Irons’ first-choice Premier League goalkeeper for 2022/23.
In other news: ‘Close…’ – Sky Sports journalist shares major West Ham development from the last 72 hours! Find out more here
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