West Ham United boss David Moyes has confirmed a huge boost ahead of tonight’s Europa League group stage opener…
The Irons are about to embark on a historic campaign as they will be making their debut at this stage of the competition and they will do so with a fully fit squad at the 58-year-old’s disposal.
Speaking ahead of kickoff, via the club’s official website, the Scot said:
“We’ve got no injuries; we have everybody fit and available.
“I’ll look at it because we have a busy programme, but overall everybody is fit and available and we’re really looking forward to it. We’re pleased to be on the road, and I think we’re all excited about being here.
“We’ve got a lot of people who we can make changes with, but we’re also trying to make sure that we choose and pick [teams] the right way if we can, and get the selection correct.”
Considering the injury troubles that Moyes and the squad had to deal with last season, this is massively encouraging news and could be crucial in the long run as the starting XI will need to be rotated regularly in the coming months.
The Hammers will be playing two games per week for the foreseeable future and it’s unreasonable to expect the same line-up to feature in every match.
For example, the east Londoners remain unbeaten in the Premier League and face table-topping Manchester United on Sunday afternoon, so Moyes will surely have one eye on that game, whilst also wanting to get off to the perfect start in Europe.
He must find the right balance and after some shrewd acquisitions during the summer transfer window, he does now appear to be well-equipped right across the pitch, barring up front where it still is only Michail Antonio.
The 31-year-old is likely to get a run-out this evening as he’ll be suspended for the visit of the Red Devils at the weekend, so that’s another boost in itself as Moyes will be able to call upon his in-form talisman.
“Mich might’ve been someone we’d have considered leaving out, but I think with the situation being the way it is at the moment, I don’t think we’ll do that,” the boss revealed.
The travelling West Ham faithful should be absolutely buzzing with this news as it means they’ll get to witness a full-strength side go to battle in a European group stage for the very first time in their history.
Towards the back end of last season, Moyes lost players like Antonio, Declan Rice and Aaron Cresswell to injury, so to have them all fit and available is certainly a huge boost to their chances of delivering the goods in Croatia.