Snoddy Takes Up Vacant Noble Slot For Irons Against Clarets

Manuel Pellegrini is a serial winner and despite his mild demeanor the Hammers manager could barely conceal his anger following the club's loss to Tottenham on Wednesday evening, it wasn't so much the loss but the manner of it that so irked the 65 year old Chilean. Pellegrini's thinly veiled comments were directed fairly and squarely at Felipe Anderson among others who were culpable. Players were given their chance to shine, some took them, some most definitely didn't and can have no complaints about being benched for the game against Burnley at the London Stadium this Saturday afternoon, a game that has taken on a greater significance than either set of supporters had envisaged at the start of the season.

Unfortunately one of the players under the microscope was goalkeeper Adrian who had been made captain for the night, and while his perforrmance wasn't dreadful it wasn't up to the level fans have grown used to while Fabianski has been in goal. Likewise Michail Antonio was given the chance to shine but was profligate in front of goal and Authur Masuaku did himself no favours with an undisciplined and uninspiring performance on the left flank, the poor quality of which was matched by Ryan Fredericks on the right. Chicharito was toothless, he was even outshone by Lucas Perez and is now beginning to look like a very expensive luxury the club cannot afford anymore!

With the loathsome quality of the 'B' team cruelly exposed on Wednesday evening, it will come as no surprise that Manuel Pellegrini is going to make wholesale changes ahead of the Burnley fixture. Robert Snodgrass has won many fans over with his blood and thunder commitment to the cause and will slot neatly in to the chasm left by the absence of Captain Mark Noble for at least the next two games following his sending off against Leicester City last weekend, our predicted starting X1 is: Fabianski, Zabaleta, Diop, Balbuena, Cresswell, Obiang, Rice, Snodgrass, Anderson, Diangana, Arnautovic. Subs: Adrian, Ogbonna, Coventry, Chicharito, Masuaku, Perez, Powell,Coventry.

Snoddy has made the decision to include him in the team a lot easier by losing close to a stone and a half of weight and his miles per match ration has sky rocketed, he still hasn't raised his game to the level it was when he was purchased as a replacement for Dimitri Payet, a poisoned chalice if ever there was one. At least now Snodgrass is beginning to show glimpses of the ability that everyone knows he has, he is more popular than ever with the fans and his temprement amd commitment rubs off on the youngster players.

Ironically Snodgrass has had the vacancy created for him in the team, in a position that suits him well, at the tip of a midfield three that enables him to 'snap' at the heels of the opposition, hopefully negating the long ball over the top! We have been one of Snoddy's harshest critics but are happy to eat 'umble Pie, we just wish he'd shave his beard off, the he would look more like a footballer instead of an MMA competitor! - Ed

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