I’m going to start this by warning you that my opinion is slightly controversial. There will be a lot of people who do not agree and will have strong views to the contrary. However, I am sure there will be a silent few who do agree with me.

I also want to say for the record that I am not being deliberately negative, merely (in my opinion) realistic.

Now that is out of the way, here goes – I don’t think Josh Cullen should be playing in our first team!!! There, I said it!!

Before you decide to lynch me, please hear me out.

This is a player who, at 21, has barely featured for us. He has been shipped out on loan to ‘gain experience’. He was great for Bradford, no arguments there. But in League One! For Bolton, in the Championship, he was average at best. He made 9 starts and 3 sub appearances. In FIVE months! FIVE MONTHS!!!! He completed 90 minutes on only five occasions. This information has come from the very reliable whoscored.com which you can see here; https://www.whoscored.com/Players/273292/Show/Josh-Cullen

Looking at his others stats, he has completed just 74% of passes, made only 1.6 tackles per game and 1.8 clearances. He has 0.6 KEY passes per game and 0.1 dribbles. Hardly setting the world alight!!

Ok, Bolton have not had a great season. At the time of writing the are currently 20th, having lost half of their 26 matches in the Championship. And yet Josh Cullen has only started NINE!! This says to me that the Bolton manager, Phil Parkinson, does not deem him good enough or influential enough to warrant a First Team spot. Phil Parkinson, a manager who knows him very very well!!

People have been quick to sing his praises for his performance against Shrewsbury. He did ok. Against League One opposition (to be fair this cannot be said for the rest of the team!!!!). But does this mean he is suddenly ready to play Huddersfield? No, it doesn’t.

We as West Ham fans have a problem and that problem is Claret Tinted Glasses. We see an Academy graduate and immediately believe he will be amazing. But the reality is that, barring Rice, no one has really challenged the First Team for quite a few years. Reece Oxford threatened in that game against Arsenal (I understand Mesut Ozil is still trying to climb out of his pocket!!) but a £20000 per week contract soon ruined that. He went to Reading and hardly got a game. He has been called back from Germany for the same reason. It will be interesting to see if he can finally realise his potential now that he is back at Rush Green.

For Cullen though, I fear he is just another one that is simply a decent Football League player. Remember Sears, Hines, Bywater? There are many others who for one reason or another never quite made it at West Ham. We all moan when they leave, complaining youth is never given a chance. We then fall silent as we see them slip down the Leagues.

I hope I am proven wrong. Like you I would love nothing more than ‘one of our own’ making a success of his West Ham career. However, I am not holding out much hope for Cullen (or Burke when it comes to that!!).

Let the bashing begin……..



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 😬

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