When your club is going through a rough patch in any division, you need your better players to step up and be counted.
That isn’t happening at West Ham United right now, and it is showing in their results as they continue to slide down the Premier League table.
Manuel Pellegrini has come under some pressure to make changes at the London Stadium, with the manner of the 3-2 defeat against Newcastle not exactly helping last time out.
Captain Mark Noble has come out and not hidden under the criticism, and has called on some of his attacking teammates to help get his side out of this bad patch.
“The players who are often affected most by a poor run are not so much the young ones but rather the flair men,” he wrote in his Evening Standard column.
“Flair players such as Manuel Lanzini, Felipe Anderson, Andriy Yarmolenko and Sebastien Haller are the ones we need to carry on doing their bits of magic around the box and trying to get us a goal.”
“I’m on at those players constantly in training, telling them it doesn’t matter if you lose the ball as long as you run back.”
West Ham need much more than just those four players to get around this tough patch, and Pellegrini has come unstuck by over-relying on those and not threatening to change his squad around.
With young players such as Nathan Holland and Albian Ajeti shouting for a chance in the starting 11, players like Anderson who have been nowhere near good enough need a reality check at this point of the campaign.
The Brazilian has yet to score this season and has only registered three assists in his 10 appearances, compare that to last season where he managed to score nine, it will be hard for him to replicate that form.
Anderson is slightly averaging more shots on goal this season compared to last with 1.7 per game according to WhoScored, which proves he is less efficient and not performing to the standards expected of him.
Robert Snodgrass has come into the side and excelled in a deeper role, but the fact that he has had to score twice in the last two games just for his side to earn a point, there is the problem.
Noble’s comments underline the struggle at West Ham right now, and Pellegrini needs to start stamping his authority with changes or start fearing the worst.