West Ham United are back in action tonight with their second-leg quarter-final clash against Olympique Lyon in the Europa League.
The first leg ended in a 1-1 draw at the London Stadium as Tanguy Ndombele scored an equaliser for the Ligue 1 side after Jarrod Bowen put the hosts ahead.
Heading into this clash, the Hammers took a blow over the weekend as they fell to a 2-0 defeat against Brentford in the Premier League.
One player who featured against Brentford and should also be in the team on this occasion is Vladimir Coufal, who made his return to action at the weekend after being out with an injury for the past few weeks.
Despite the poor result, the Czechia international still managed to show what he’s capable of delivering for his team on the pitch.
On the ball, the 29-year-old completed 59 passes in total, with one key pass, one cross and one long ball, along with completing both dribbles that he attempted. From a defensive point of view, the full-back made four clearances and three tackles, won five of his six ground duels and wasn’t dribbled past once.
This display earned Coufal an overall match rating of 7.1/10 from SofaScore, making him the Irons’ second-highest rated outfield player on the day behind Declan Rice. This is particularly impressive given how long he’d been out of action as a result of his injury, showing that it didn’t take him long to get back into the swing of things.
To highlight how solid he is at the back for the Hammers, no other defender in David Moyes’ squad has racked up a higher total of tackles and interceptions combined (69) in the Premier League this season than the £27k-per-week machine.
Labelled a “hardworking” player and a “warrior” by his former Slovan Liberec teammate Radoslav Kovac, Coufal could be a terrifying prospect for Lyon to come up against tonight.
If the £10.8m-rated defender is fit enough to play tonight, then Moyes should definitely have him in the West Ham starting XI.