West Ham goalkeeper Roberto should not be used as a “scapegoat” after his poor performance against Newcastle United on Saturday.
The Spaniard failed to cover himself in glory against the Magpies, and was questionably beaten from 30 yards by a Jonjo Shelvey free kick that ultimately proved to be decisive in the 3-2 loss.
But writing in a piece for Football.London, Inkersole suggested that the 6’4″ stopper was not the root cause of the Hammers’ current malaise.
He said: “The keeper sums up what is wrong with the Hammers this season under Pellegrini – they are capable of producing good moments but also moments of nonsense which costs them.
“Roberto is not, and shouldn’t be, a scapegoat, there have been plenty of poor performances around him in recent weeks. But the parallel between him going from good to bad is indicative of the Hammers at the moment.
“He is inconsistent, and so is the team in general.”
Let’s not beat around the bush here, Roberto could have done a lot better with Jonjo Shelvey’s free kick on Saturday. It’s struck from a long way out, is at a decent height for the keeper, and even if he is unsighted and doesn’t see it from late, you have to question why he hasn’t organised his wall better in the first place. Does one mistake justify a whole barrage of questions about his quality as goalkeeper? Absolutely not, and it should be noted that he made several decent saves to limit the Magpies to just the three goals. So far this season, since coming in for the injured Lukasz Fabianski, Roberto has averaged four saves per game, including 2.2 from inside the box, as per Whoscored. In fact, you could even argue that he has been one of the less disappointing players in the Irons’ lineup since this recent slump in form began. Inkersole is right, he shouldn’t be used as a scapegoat.