It’s time for David Moyes to unleash Alphonse Areola as his first-choice West Ham goalkeeper ahead of tonight’s Carabao Cup clash with Manchester United.
According to Football Insider earlier this month, the Scotsman is planning to phase the Paris Saint-Germain loanee into his starting XI to make him the new number one over the coming weeks.
That is yet to come to fruition, though, as the 28-year-old summer signing is yet to make his debut for the Irons.
Lukasz Fabianski, 36, has started every single game so far this season and has pretty much been untouchable between the sticks for several years now, but Moyes must think about the long-term future, and handing Areola a start at Old Trafford would be a good test on whether or not the Frenchman is ready.
Areola was a regular for Fulham last season as they were relegated to the Championship but he still impressed.
As per SofaScore, he kept nine clean sheets and made an average of 3.2 saves per game, stopping 116 attempts across his 36 appearances. Standing at 6 foot 5 in stature, he could be a more physically commanding option for the Hammers.
Current Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel had him in his ranks during his time at Les Parcs des Princes and went as far as callin him “exceptional” and “amazing” for sharing the workload with Gigi Buffon, as per PSG’s official website.
If the £15.3m-rated shot-stopper is to truly become the new no.1, then he must be given a run in the side, particularly as he’s only on loan – if he struggles, then it would make the decision to not sanction a permanent move an easy one, for example.
Ex-Cottagers boss Scott Parker has previously waxed lyrical about his skillset to reporters (via BT), saying: “[He is] a very aggressive keeper, a front-foot keeper who wants to come and command his box, come and collect.
“Physically very very big, agile. They were all the areas we looked at and they were the areas he ticked those boxes, and that was exactly what we need and we’ve not been shocked in any way by that.”
It’s time for Moyes to bite the bullet and start the three-time France international. It could be huge for their entire season, not just for their chances of pulling off a result tonight.
AND in other news, ExWHUemployee reveals behind-the-scenes West Ham claim…