It’s hard to tell where West Ham stand on Reece Oxford.
Was the 20-year-old shipped out to Germany in the hopes that he could turn his career around and become a crucial player for the Hammers upon his return? Or was the intention to put him in the shop window to bump his asking price over a potential move in the near future?
Only Manuel Pellegrini really knows for sure, but one thing is certain, whatever his intentions were, they aren’t going to plan.
Oxford was again out of FC Augsburg’s squad this weekend, and you can’t help feeling that his time must be running out to make a decent impression.
After making five consecutive appearances for the Bundesliga side, he has not featured since being sent off against Freiburg at the end of February, and things are looking fairly bleak for his chances of a sudden reinvention on the continent.
After serving his initial suspension, the defender has been suffering with the flu, and with Bundesliga rapidly approaching it’s finale any hopes he may have had of convincing Pellegrini that he is worth a gamble must surely be fading fast.
Oxford has bucketloads of potential, but hasn’t shown anything in recent years to suggest that he is worth a first team opportunity in England.
Even with the Hammers looking as if they could do with a new centre-back in the summer, you would be fairly safe in assuming that it won’t be their academy graduate who fills that vacancy.
By now, Oxford should be pushing for a first team role, and instead he looks further away than ever.