West Ham boss David Moyes has utilised Declan Rice as more of a driving midfielder during the first four Premier League games whilst Tomas Soucek seems to have taken up the holding role.
We think that the Scot is hindering the Czech’s ability by playing him in that role, however.
And if Rice is to be the one who drives forward with the ball, he needs to back that up with a goal return like Soucek’s from last season.
The 26-year-old midfielder scored 10 goals in 38 Premier League games last season. Some of those came from headers but the majority were from him being in the right place at the right time.
It feels like we’re not getting the best out of Soucek with him sitting in front of the back four.
David Moyes should re-think Rice and Soucek roles
There are not many better players in the Premier League than Rice at protecting the back four.
In fact, it could be argued that Dec is the best in world football at performing that particular role.
Meanwhile, Soucek is excellent at arriving in the box at just the right time. He has done it throughout his entire career.
Rice undoubtedly has it in him to drive forward with the ball, and he can still do that. But putting the reins on Soucek is severely affecting the way in which he functions as a footballer.
Here are all of Soucek’s goals last season:
Perhaps Moyes should revert to type and play Dec as the holding player, and thus giving Soucek the freedom to bomb forward.
It worked for us last season, so there is no reason why it shouldn’t do again this term.