Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Cheltenham a litmus test for season ahead

Cheltenham should present few if any problems, even if Allardyce selects a second string eleven, but the way we perform could be a clue to how the season will unfold. Every West Ham fan has obsessed about the need for another striker, but the Capital One Fan Cup will give us the opportunity to assess the ability and desire of a whole host of  alternative options to our perceived first team.

We already know that Morrison will get a start, and he seems to figure prominently in Allardyce's plans. It would be interesting to see Lletget and Lee too, both of whom figured in pre season games and appear to be on the fringe of the first team squad, although I would be worried if Pelly Ruddock were to start in a makeshift defence. Last season, Allardyce ripped into the back four after the humiliating exit at the hands of Wigan, but what did he expect when he started with Spence, Tomkins, Potts and McCartney? We can expect a defence of strangers again but hopefully it will include experience and talent in the form of Diarra, Rat and Tomkins.

Collison should get a start, as should Vaz Te who, if he scores, may yet get an opportunity to save his West Ham career. After his sloppy performance against Newcastle, Downing should also be given a run out.

With the need to avoid injuries, we will probably see a team something like this:

O'Brien, Tomkins, Diarra, Rat
Collison, Morrison, Taylor, Lletget, Downing
Vaz Te


darrenharry said...

Agreed. There seems to be a recognition of the fact that this type of competition can be lucrative now that our first season is "under belt". The squad depth in midfield areas certainly suggests goal threat, and the likes of Collison, Diarra, Morrison need to take this type of game as "qualifier" for 1st team squad inclusion with the transfer deadline day now hours away. If anyone looks miffed, fed up of not getting 1st team chances or off the pace, I see a round robin email to Championship clubs from Sam offering season long loans.

Anonymous said...

"If you're going to do something then it's worth doing it well" as my old ma used to say...... this blog is half arsed, you only post when you feel like it. If you're not up to it then hand it over to someone else, or get some help in. What you scared of? You've always struck me as a bit of an Iain Dale, so why can't Stani be the new SJ Chandros? or perhpas Fred149 the new Tom Aldworth?