Safe to say, it’s not been the season many West Ham fans expected when they moved to the London Stadium last summer. It began with a shock elimination from the Europa League and has continued with some worrying form in the top flight, which looks set to make the end of the season far more tense than it should be.
Nonetheless, some West Ham stars have certainly held up their end of the bargain throughout the campaign, so earlier this week we asked Irons fans who deserves this year’s Player of the Season award. The results of our exclusive poll are now in – here’s a rundown of the top THREE…
The last few months have felt like real coming-of-age territory for Manuel Lanzini, taking the reigns from Dimitri Payet as West Ham’s chief creative threat in front of the midfield.
The Argentine magician has bagged seven goals and two assists so far this term – including a run of three strikes in his last seven outings – and is edging towards his peak years at the age of 24. There’s still work to be done if the midfielder is to keep his side out of trouble this season, however, whilst 2017/18 will be all about consistency in terms of output.
Rather tellingly, West Ham’s win rate drops by 5% when Pedro Obiang isn’t in the starting XI, which highlights how he’s become of increasing importance throughout the campaign.
The Spaniard didn’t enjoy the best of debut seasons in east London but has really come into his own since first beginning to hold down a starting berth in October, emerging as one of the Irons’ most consistent performers and providing some much-needed control in the middle of the park.
Without Michail Antonio’s supply of goals, West Ham would likely be in the relegation zone by now. Asked to play at right-back, centre-forward and a variety of roles in between, Antonio’s not only shown he’s a goal threat this season, leading the Hammers’ scoring charts with nine in the Premier League, but also a fantastic team player, prepared to do whatever is asked of him.
Antonio’s form has already been acknowledged with a series of England call-ups this term, and Hammers fans clearly hold the former Nottingham Forest star in high regard as well. The only question now is whether the Irons can keep hold of him this summer, but the club are reportedly set to offer him a £65k per-week contract.