West Ham United have been dealt a huge injury setback this week, with Lukasz Fabianski likely to be unavailable for Sunday’s home game against Crystal Palace in the Premier League.
What’s the latest?
As per a report from Claret & Hugh, the Polish keeper suffered a knock in the 1-0 defeat against Manchester United, which led to him being replaced by Alphonse Areola at half-time, and he is now said to be a doubt for this weekend’s Premier League clash.
Although the 37-year-old is not confirmed to be out of contention yet, and the injury is not thought to be serious, the Claret & Hugh source stated: “However, he cannot be considered certain for the game against Palace.”
Fabianski has locked down the no.1 position so far this season, starting in all 13 of his side’s Premier League games, despite the Hammers signing Areola on a five-year deal in the summer transfer window.
The Frenchman, meanwhile, has had to settle for outings in the Europa Conference League, starting all five of the group-stage matches, keeping a total of two clean sheets in the process, including one in their most recent European outing, a 1-0 victory over Silkeborg IF.
The Irons have a decent replacement for the Poland international, however, the news of his potential absence is still a blow for manager David Moyes, who will want to have a settled side, with his best performers available.
The £65k-per-week shot-stopper falls firmly into this category, putting in a particularly impressive performance in the away trip to Liverpool, where he drew praise from the opposition boss Jurgen Klopp for the “great saves” he produced to keep his side in the game, although they did go on to lose the game 1-0.
Equally important in the 1-1 draw away at Southampton, the 6 foot 3 stopper recorded a SofaScore rating of 7.6, the second-highest of any West Ham player on the pitch, helping his side get a point on the road by producing seven saves, four of which were inside the box.
With a save percentage of 78.3%, the 57-time Poland international is the third-highest in this area of any Premier League goalkeeper who has started at least two games, only trailing Kepa Arrizabalaga and Jordan Pickford, highlighting just how valuable he is to the team.
As such, the veteran keeper potentially missing out on Sunday is a huge blow for the Hammers, and Moyes will be hoping that Areola can prove his worth as a viable backup in his absence.