West Ham United left back Arthur Masuaku’s sending off against Aston Villa on Monday night has left Hammers boss Manuel Pellegrini with something of a dilemma heading into Sunday’s clash with Manchester United.
The 25-year-old had been in terrific form to start the season, but will now miss the London Stadium clash. That means the Chilean must come up with an alternative option on the left hand side of his defence.
The problem is that Masuaku’s natural replacement, Aaron Cresswell, is so out of favour that he hasn’t even made the team’s match day squad since the opening day drubbing at the hands of Manchester City.
With that said, there is one other outstanding candidate to take Johnson’s place. The solution is right in front of Pellegrini’s eyes, starting week in and week out for the Irons’ Under-23s.
Yep, you guessed it, it’s Ben Johnson. The 19-year-old is a tremendous prospect who produced one of the finest pre seasons of any West Ham player this summer.
He has made only one first team appearance for the east London outfit, but performed exquisitely under the circumstances against Pep Guardiola’s surging champions last February.
As per WhoScored.com, he was in fine form. The youngster completed a tackle, an interception, drew two offsides and made three clearances at the Etihad Stadium. Those aren’t easy numbers for a teenage defender to put up against a side like City.
With Cresswell impressing no one since the turn of the year, and with United not the most formidable opposition these days, Johnson surely must get the nod at left back against the Red Devils.