With most of the summer optimism seeming to be disappearing it has made me think how much better the current team would be with Lanzini in it.

Last season, our best performances were mainly built around the speed of counter attack from Lanzini and Arnie.

If Lanzini hadn’t been injured would they have continued this season as they finished last season?

Who knows but with the added quality around them I’m sure we would have had a solid base to bed in the new players around.


We have started this season with so many new players and regardless of how much we all want them to hit the ground running then it probably wasn’t going to happen. Arnie did not start the season flying last year and he was already a premier league player.

There were warnings that Anderson may take time and Yarmolenko has not been fully fit. Along with Hanandez coming back late from the world cup, then the front four have not had time to work out how they play with each other.


I already touched on the defence in my previous blog



But I would go with,


Fredericks, Balbuena, Diop, Cresswell

Mainly because we need something different from the defence that were the joint worse in the Premier League last season

Whilst the defence are getting used to playing with each other we need to try and keep consistency and not keep changing the starting lineup. Further into the season I can see Zabaleta coming into the team in games where we will not have that much possession and need a defensive full back. But the way that most of us have been calling for needed a faster right back.

As well as not keep changing the back four early on I also feel that we must give them some support in front. I don’t think this should be Noble and Wilshere. I feel they both will have a role in the team/squad for this season but not together at the moment.

That said, I’m not anti Noble and we must take into account what Noble brings to the team. If you look at the stats you will see that Noble is always our top passer in terms of completed passes. This is because he is always on for a pass from the defence and even if its only a few yards pass it can take the immediate pressure off. If Noble is to drop out of the starting line up then someone has to do this role. Personally I don’t see this being Obiang as I don’t think his passing stats were great when he did come in last season. Sanchez I really don’t know and it seems that he wasn’t seen as an outstanding signing. Wilshere can do this deeper role and would be the one I start with but when he’s not available then i would go back to Noble.

With Wilshere I would play Rice, it was disappointing that he was left out of the squad for Bournemouth after being pulled off at half time at Liverpool. Was this the Manager proving a point along with Fredericks and Antonio that no one is save in the squad? Only time will tell if this dents their confidence or makes them more determined, with Rice I think it will make them more determined.

With two deeper centre Midfielders in Wilshere and Rice then we need to decide the remaining formation with the attacking players.

Going back to the start of this blog with regards to Lanzini and what he gives to the team then we need to bring some pace to the centre Midfield. I would move Anderson to an attacking central midfield role with the game plan of him running with the ball into gaps between the opposition midfield and defence. Let’s start to frighten the opposition. I have heard a few others mention this and I think there is definite positives to this. Anderson has shown brief examples of how he can run with the ball and doing it from the centre will open up space up for the other attacking midfielders as Lanzini did.

In front of the midfield three I would play Arnie to the left, Yarmolenko to the right and Hernandez central. I know lots of people want Arnie up front but he would still join up often with Hernandez often especially if Anderson has a central role where he could go left or right. Bring Cresswell into play on the left and we will also see more crosses from deep rather than waiting for Masuaku to get to the goal line. The front three should without doubt bring the goals that we need to get our season started.

But the bench will also be important,

Perez could come on in the Attacking midfield role,

Antonio or Snodgrass could come on wide allowing Arnie to move up front

Masuaku could replace Cresswell

Noble could come on to keep then ball later on.


My team would look like this



By DazP@Kirtonhammer



By Gonzo

West Ham fan for as long as I can remember. I was flukey enough to watch The Irons beat Bury 10-0 in my first ever game . . . True to form, West Ham then went out and signed their central defender 😬

One thought on “How much do we miss Lanzini?”
  1. I like this a lot and over the last few days i have certainly been thinking there is merit to bring Anderson in more centrally. You could also have Masuka at left wing / Yarmolanko right wing. A completely new central pairing is a good shout, lets try and ride ourselves of the previous seasons failings. you could argue though that Declan Rice is our best defender by a mile……obviously without seeing Diop play.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.