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West Ham: Moyes must ditch “abysmal” Tomas Soucek

West Ham United secured victory over Bournemouth in controversial fashion on Monday, with David Moyes’ side the beneficiaries of potentially debatable refereeing decisions to help secure a much-needed win at the London Stadium.

The Hammers took the lead just before the interval following a header from Kurt Zouma, despite a possible handball from Thilo Kehrer in the build-up, before eventually sealing the points in second-half added time through Said Benrahma’s spot-kick after Cherries defender Jordan Zemura had been penalised by another contentious handball decision.

Despite the potential debate over those key moments, the Irons will likely care little, having managed to secure all three points. That result moves the east Londoners further away from danger amid what has been an underwhelming start to the campaign.

There will still be key points of concern for Moyes following that clash with Gary O’Neil’s side, though, with midfielder Tomas Soucek still something of a problem for the former Everton boss, having produced another frustrating display on the night.

On the face of it, the Czech Republic international made a positive contribution in last night’s encounter having provided the assist for Zouma’s opener, while also once again showcasing his defensive strength by winning five of his seven ground duels.

However, it is the other side to the 27-year-old’s game which remains an issue for the Irons at present, with the 54-cap dud having notably lost possession 12 times from his 57 touches, while enjoying a measly pass accuracy rate of just 76%.

That errant showing saw journalist Josh Bunting point to the midfielder’s “abysmal” record on the ball, having suggested that the 6 foot 4 brute is simply “just not good enough” to be deployed in that role in front of the back four.

The former Slavia Prague man has seemingly “struggled all season” – in the words of Bunting – having previously been tipped for a £30m departure from the club over the summer, amid a reported contract dispute involving himself and the club.

Having no doubt thrived upon his arrival in English football in January 2020 – scoring 13 league goals in his first 18 months with West Ham – the £65k-per-week titan has since suffered something of a decline of late, scoring just one top-flight goal this term.

He may be an imposing figure in the centre of the park as a result of his towering stature, but Soucek is perhaps unable to offer a more dynamic presence, notably ranking in the bottom 16% for pressures made among players in his position across Europe’s top five leagues over the past 12 months.

Although he has been a valued figure in the club’s rise in recent years under Moyes, it may well be time for the 59-year-old to take the Czech midfielder out of the side “for a period” – as per Bunting’s suggestion – in forthcoming games.

Article title: West Ham: Moyes must ditch “abysmal” Tomas Soucek

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