We all knew that West Ham United goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski’s injury in late September was a big blow to the club, but we didn’t realise it would have this much of a negative impact on Manuel Pellegrini’s side.
The Hammers are floundering, without a victory in seven games in all competitions, and Fabianski’s replacement between the sticks, Roberto, looks like a rabbit in the headlights.
Indeed, his performance in the 3-0 defeat to Burnley on Saturday was one of the single worst goalkeeping displays we have seen in the Premier League for some time.
With that said, the time has surely now come for Pellegrini to roll the dice on his other summer goalkeeping signing. Strap yourself in, folks. Let’s all jump on board the David Martin express.
The 33-year-old came to the London Stadium from fierce rivals Millwall last summer with a reputation for being a reliable custodian between the sticks, but certainly not a Premier League-level starter.
But that’s how bad Roberto has been, and anyone who watched him against the Clarets on Saturday can attest to that. He was a passenger for Ashley Barnes’ opener, inadvertently set Burnley’s second goal in motion with a poor throw out to Fabian Balbuena, and scored a horrific own goal for their third after punching a cross into his own net.
The Spaniard has made just five saves in six games for the Hammers this campaign, as per WhoScored.com, with 1.8 of them coming from outside the box. So he’s not regularly facing shots with a high degree of difficulty, yet he is conceding with alarming regularity.
Martin is yet to play for the Irons, and so his selection moving forward would be a risk as well. But Pellegrini needs to try something new, because it’s clear the Roberto experiment isn’t working.