James Collins gushed about West Ham midfielder Mark Noble and claimed the Hammers captain doesn’t get enough credit.
The former Hammers enforcer admitted that he seems to rave about Noble whenever he speaks about Manuel Pellegrini’s side, but explained he ends up doing that as he just questions where the club would be without him.
Ray Parlour suggested the 32-year-old midfielder would be vital for the clash with Tottenham after the international break, and this is what prompted Collins to reveal how highly he rates his ex-teammate.
“Especially in a game like that and I watched the Spurs game away when we beat them,” said Collins on talkSPORT (8:53, Wednesday, November 13th).
“He doesn’t get enough credit for me, that he deserves, Mark Noble, I seem to be talking about him all the time when I speak about West Ham as for me, without him on the pitch… due to what he does off the pitch in the community…he epitomises West Ham fans, as a local boy he knows what that club means.
“Without him in the team, hopefully, he is fit, you do question where they could go.”
Collins knows how important Noble is on the pitch and in the Hammers’ dressing room due to his leadership qualities as he played alongside him for more than enough games to know what the midfielder is all about. So if he is saying the 32-year-old isn’t getting the credit he deserves, and warrants being showered in more plaudits then you sit up and take notice. Noble helps set the tempo of games on behalf of West Ham with his passes, he has averaged an impressive 43 passes per game across his 11 Premier League outings this season, as per WhoScored, and is effectively the heartbeat of the team. While some will argue that midfield partner Declan Rice effectively does the same job as Noble, i.e set the tempo and be an extra defensive presence in the team, the 20-year-old obviously isn’t able to match Noble’s leadership attributes just yet. He may be able to do one day when he is even more experienced and is more of the finished product but for now, Noble should be one of the first-names on Pellegrini’s teamsheet and get more credit.