Slaven Bilic has gotten himself in a bit of a bother. No, not the bad kid, but instead, the best kind of bother a manager could have – he has one too many good players and 11 starting positions. West Ham bossed this season’s summer transfer window by bagging some of the finer talents across Europe by casting their nets far and wide, and turning heads of players who were destined for greener pastures. That’s Slaven Bilic for you. T4O takes up the unenviable task of sifting through the Hammers’ ranks, and pick out the team with the most impact.
A crowd favourite at Upton Park last season, the Spaniard has won accolades (And plenty of points in Fantasy Premier League) with his clenched-teeth grit, from saving penalties, to parrying off shots he had no right to save. A presence between the sticks, inspiring confidence.
One of most consistent defenders in the league, nevermind, West Ham’s ranks. He’s been a figure of authority in the middle, phasing out another colossus, James Collins, with relative ease.
Built like a Roman god, Angelo Ogbonna, uses his sheer physicality and athleticism to get the better of his nimble-footed opponents. Angelo and Reid form an ideal balance at the centre of the defence. The Italian, originally a left-back, wiil have the tendency to step up and intercept, and Reid looks to sweep behind him.
The wizened Spaniard would be crucial for facilitating Bilic’s attack-heavy style. The former Liverpool man, 2 time Champions League Winner, and a World Champion, is all about defensive nous and shrewd expedience. When West Ham hit teams on the counter, he will slot right beside Reid and Ogbonna as an auxiliary centre-back.
While Aaron is estimated to be out till November, there is very little doubt that his balance in his defensive play would slot him as a starter on the left-side of Bilic’s backline.
Mark Noble, as his name suggests, the man was made to be the skipper of West Ham United. He leads by example, and he’d have to be the pivot on which the London club’s passages of play swings.
The former Arsenal graduate is a man of style and substance. Eerily composed on the ball, the Norwegian defensive midfielder will be the perfect foil to the busy Noble, keeping the play ticking and snuffing attacks seamlessly.
What can you say about the Frenchman that hasn’t already been said? After carrying his electric displays for West Ham to the international scene and onto the European Championships, and finally and indisputably proving his quality, he’ll be on his way for having another big season in West Ham colours.
Bilic has bought proven Premier League quality. The Ghanian international is as versatile a player as they come -comfortable as a box-to-box midfielder, defensive midfielder, a left-back – the bustling multi-tasker is most proficient coming in from the left wing. He’s harrying off the ball will make him the first like of West Ham’s defence.
Crafty, clever, economical. He’s a switchblade knife when it comes to tight defences, playing in from the right wing.
He may not have been West Ham’s first preference as a striker, having failed in their pursuits of players if were to jot down, would exceed the word limit of this article; but Simone Zaza finds himself to be the final one. West Ham have had a decent history with Italians forwards, and the Juventus man will have a lot to live up to.