David Moyes must axe Mark Noble from his starting plans after seeing the West Ham United captain hold the Irons back in Sunday’s 2-2 draw with Brighton and Hove Albion.
Noble opened the action at the London Stadium as the attack-minded midfielder in Moyes’ plans but struggled to establish himself as the flow of play was not suited to his lack of pace.
His runs often proved aimless and without intent, leaving Moyes with no choice but to hook the £50,000-per-week ace at the break in favour of a more natural No. 10 option in Manuel Lanzini.
Moyes accepted after the game that he got his tactics wrong in search of solutions for the absences of Michail Antonio and Arthur Masuaku, believing the pair brought a balance to the side he had not seen at the London Stadium in recent weeks.
“In hindsight, it was not the right decision. It was something we had discussed, I tried to get Jarrod [Bowen] and Seb [Haller] playing up front together and hope that the two of them would give us something different,” said Moyes, via quotes by football.london.
“We tried to find a solution to losing Arthur and Micky Antonio, we are looking closely to see if there are other things in the squad. We had a balance in the team and a way we played, which helped us, and we are now trying to find that again. In hindsight, the second half was much better.”
Moyes must now axe Noble from his starting plans when West Ham visit Southampton on Tuesday night, as he cannot afford to see the 33-year-old, who Alan Hutton believes has been “unbelievable” at the club, hold his team back again.
Noble offered nothing of real value during his time on the field at home to Brighton on Sunday, with a sole key pass the only moment of note for the £4m-rated veteran who failed to attempt a single shot or make a successful tackle, interception or dribble, per SofaScore.
On another day, Noble may even have seen his number shown on the board before the half-time break such was his ineffective presence in the advanced midfield role, and it could now be a while before he earns a fourth start of the Premier League season.
West Ham improved against the Seagulls after Moyes sought to introduce Lanzini for Noble, with the Hammers going from a 36.7% share of the possession in the first half to 49.8% in the second, per WhoScored.
The Irons also outshot the visitors by four attempts in the second period, had four times as many efforts on target and completed 183 of their 235 passes, after attempting just three efforts in the opening 45 minutes to Brighton’s nine and completing 134 of 177 passes.
AND in other news, a West Ham gem who’s “not been at the races” betrayed David Moyes vs Brighton.