Big things were expected of Manuel Lanzini this season but his performances have been underwhelming of late.
The Argentine was hauled off with half an hour left of the 2-1 defeat to Crystal Palace last time out.
Lanzini is undoubtedly one of West Ham’s best players.
But his lack of form could cost him his place in the side at Everton this weekend.
An injury niggle hasn’t helped. But his performance at Aston Villa before he picked up a knock was poor too.
Chief playmaker must start producing the goods
Lanzini’s job is to create and score goals. And his stats have hardly been outstanding so far this season with no goals and just one assist in his six games.
Manuel Pellegrini introduced Jack Wilshere in his place for the last half an hour against Palace.
And it would appear the former Arsenal midfielder is very much in Pellegrini’s thoughts for the central playmaker role ahead of £24million Pablo Fornals.
The Spaniard has struggled to impress since his summer move but will need more time to adapt to the frantic pace and physical demands of the English game.
Pellegrini not afraid to make changes
Pellegrini has proved he is not afraid to drop players who fall below the standards expected of them.
Fabian Balbuena, Aaron Cresswell, Arthur Masuaku, Wilshere himself and even captain Mark Noble can testify to that.
If Wilshere can produce something like his best form for around an hour at Everton Pellegrini could then have the luxury of introducing a hungry and fresh Lanzini in the second half with a point to prove.
Wilshere best used from start if Hammers boss does bring midfielder back into the side
Given Wilshere’s injury history it is always a risk introducing him as a substitute.
And that could also come into Pellegrini’s thinking.
Declan Rice and Cresswell are both fit to take their place in an otherwise unchanged line-up from the team which started against Palace last time out.
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