David Moyes’ biggest contribution to West Ham in his short reign as manager was to convert Marko Arnautovic from inconsistent winger into talisman and centre-forward.

Manuel Pellegrini has picked up on that good work and the Austrian is at the sharp end of the Chilean’s Hammers revolution this season.

After Arnie was inspired as Pellegrini got his first league win in charge against Goodison on Sunday, one of the greatest centre-forwards of the Premier League era was full of praise.

Alan Shearer was effusive in his praise for the reasonably newly-converted frontman, which shows just what masterstroke Moyes pulled off last season.

What did he say?

MOSCOW, RUSSIA – JULY 11: BBC Match of the day presenter Alan Shearer during the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Semi Final match between England and Croatia at Luzhniki Stadium on July 11, 2018 in Moscow, Russia. (Photo by Matthew Ashton – AMA/Getty Images)

The Newcastle legend named Arnautovic in his team of the week and was clearly impressed with his weekend display.

He said: “A real centre-forward’s performance. He scored a very good goal and provided an assist when his team needed it most. Led the line with such authority.”

 

On two-goal team-mate Andriy Yarmolenko, he added: “Two goals on his first start. I’m surprised it has taken so long (I tipped him as one to watch!!!)”

Moyes’ masterstroke

LONDON, ENGLAND – JANUARY 20: David Moyes, Manager of West Ham United speaks to Marko Arnautovic of West Ham United during the Premier League match between West Ham United and AFC Bournemouth at London Stadium on January 20, 2018 in London, England. (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

Arnautovic is leading the line with the quality that Javier Hernandez was supposed to following his exciting move last summer.

For him to get the praise from a legend of the centre-forward trade shows that he is now fully-adapted to his new role and capable of shining.

Moyes may not have been especially popular, or even successful, at West Ham. But he left behind a reinvented Arnautovic.

That will be so key for Pellegrini; much of the good work he will hope to do this season will be based on that switch.

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