Let’s be honest. West Ham went up to the Etihad with the sole purpose of not losing heavily. David Moyes set his side up in an incredibly defensive manner, and the Hammers went out with a whimper against Manchester City, failing to register a single shot on target.
The eleven players selected by Moyes left the Scot open for criticism. West Ham played with a flat back five, and had three defensive midfielders sitting in front of them, whilst Robert Snodgrass supported Michail Antonio in attack.
Aside from the former Nottingham Forest ace, the Hammers had no pace in their side whatsoever. Another problem was their lack of creativity.
And this made Pablo Fornals’ omission from the 18-man match-day squad all the more baffling.
The Spaniard is clearly not rated by Moyes. He was one of West Ham’s best and most consistent players for a two month spell before the 56-year-old took over, but since the start of the year he has only played 227 Premier League minutes.
Some West Ham fans were completely baffled as to why Fornals wasn’t part of the traveling party to Manchester last night…
He was our best performer prior to Moyes turning up. God knows what he’s done to deserve the treatment since.
— Alan Frost (@AlanFrostCOYI) February 19, 2020
Spot on! Moyes is not doing himself any favours with these line ups/squads
— Mark (@RampantPedro) February 19, 2020
<script async src=
Surelyy ahaaahahahaha Moyes has lost the plot
— James (@DeclanSZN) February 19, 2020
Farcical 🙄… He’s a winner though!
— Steve Norris (@SteveNorris80) February 19, 2020
What a waste of a talent that just oozes nurturing and confidence. Well that’s gone now
— Mark (@jeffers4045) February 19, 2020
Yet zabaleta makes it so he can wave to the city fans. Defeated team
Noble should be dropped for fornals
— hammerhead (@larryberyl) February 19, 2020
But Lanzini makes the squad? 🤬#GSBMout
— SmokeyJones (@Gingerbr3d) February 19, 2020
Absolute shocking decision
— gooding susan (@goodingsusan1) February 19, 2020
Disgraceful one of our best players this season ruined by our dinosaur manager!
— Jamie (@Jmorbster1) February 19, 2020
— Jon Knouse (@GlencoeHammer) February 19, 2020
It’s amazing that Fornals isn’t in the 18 and Masuaku starts. He is the worst player in the league probably would in the Championship too
— Graeme (@IvattGraeme) February 19, 2020
He’s better than snodgrass, but he won’t drop him.
— Billy Bonds Claret & Blue Army (@Smackit0) February 19, 2020
And reliable West Ham insider ExWHUemployee delivered his verdict on the situation, speculating that Moyes might just not rate the Spaniard…
I don’t think he made the 18 https://t.co/VnOmpWWStW
— ExWHUemployee (@ExWHUemployee) February 19, 2020
Whatever the reason, Moyes must be open to changing his mind on Fornals. Because the 23-year-old could be a real difference-maker for the Hammers between now and the end of the season.