Issa Diop and Angelo Ogbonna have established themselves as manager Manuel Pellegrini’s first choice centre half partnership, but Sky Sports pundit Mills isn’t a big fan.
“Centre-backs, I’m still not hugely convinced by Diop and Ogbonna, they will give you chances from time to time,” he told Football Insider.
“It’s better than it was, when you go player for player against Manchester United, I think they probably just about shave it. Maybe six players to five, it’s quite close, but on paper maybe West Ham’s starting XI is a little bit better than Manchester United. That shows how much West Ham have improved but also the fall and demise of Manchester United.”
This seems rather harsh from Mills. Doesn’t he realise that the Hammers have kept four clean sheets in a row in all competitions? But, yeah, their centre backs are dodgy. This reeks of Mills trying to find holes somewhere in this West Ham team, while it also has the nasty stench of stale, outdated punditry. This may have been a decent point during the second half of last season, but it’s no longer the case. Ogbonna, in particular, has come on leaps and bounds this campaign. The Italian international has really shored things up since replacing Fabian Balbuena after the opening day Manchester City debacle. The timing of this is strange, as well. Yes, you could have made this point after the City thumping and sounded pretty clever. Instead, Mills has criticised the Irons’ centre halves after a 2-0 victory over Manchester United. He’s not helping himself, is he? However, his point that West Ham’s starting line up is better than United’s was borne out on Sunday.