Nolan claimed that Fabianski has kind of become West Ham’s talisman and implied that the Hammers were always going to be affected by losing such a key player to injury.
“When you’re talking about a talisman, we spoke about Liverpool and Sadio Mane earlier, Fabianski has become that for West Ham,” said Nolan on Sky Sports’ The Debate (23:12, Monday, November 4th).
“I spoke to Noble yesterday and he was saying, he was a big loss as he is a massive important cog in their team when they’re doing well, I think he was player of the year for them last year, so it is a massive loss when you lose such a key player.”
Is it a shock that Nolan and Noble are painfully aware that Fabianski’s absence is a potential cause behind the club’s run of form? No. Since the Polish goalkeeper got injured, it’s been hard not to realise just how important he is to Manuel Pellegrini’s side as it’s not a surprise the club’s form has dipped without him. The 34-year-old went down injured in the 2-2 draw with Bournemouth and in the four league games that have followed, the Hammers haven’t managed a single win. Ahead of Fabianski’s injury, the Hammers were on a six-game unbeaten streak, so it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to make a connection. The shot-stopper racked up three clean sheets and only conceded eight goals in the seven league games he featured in ahead of being ruled out. When you consider his replacement in the first-team, Roberto hasn’t managed a clean sheet in the league yet, then it’s very telling that the Hammers are struggling without him. If Roberto had come into the team and excelled, then maybe the loss of Fabianski wouldn’t be made such a big deal of, however as the Spaniard hasn’t wowed thus far, it’s hard not to think that the Hammers’ form wouldn’t have dipped if Fabianski had remained between the sticks.