West Ham boss David Moyes spoke to reporters after our defeat to Arsenal and criticised Michail Antonio for his poor ball retention.
The 31-year-old Hammers striker has been desperately out of form since returning from international duty with Jamaica last month and he was extremely poor once again yesterday against Arsenal.
What makes the situation worse is the fact that Moyes has nobody else to bring to cover for Micky.
That one is on the Scot. He decided to spend big on Nikola Vlasic rather than sign a centre-forward in the summer. And that decision is starting to look questionable at best.
David Moyes delivers Michail Antonio verdict after West Ham defeat to Arsenal
Antonio either needs to massively raise his game or be taken out of the firing line. One of the two.
The 31-year-old’s poor form has been hugely detrimental to our performances as a team in recent weeks. He doesn’t seem to have the pace or the explosiveness that he once did and the ball just isn’t sticking to him.
Moyes spoke to Football.London and responded when asked what he thought about Antonio’s performance at the Emirates against Arsenal:
“I did not think we played the ball through and forward as well as we have done in other games. But I still felt that when Michail did get it his retention levels weren’t as good as they should have been. I think that we needed to play the ball through and into him more often but what we needed to do that to all the forward players and we did not.”
Antonio’s levels are certainly not where they should be at the moment.
There are so many things he needs to work on – his hold-up play, the timing of his runs, the pattern of his runs and his choice of pass.
Hopefully he will come good again. West Ham need Antonio to be firing on all cylinders like he was at the start of the season…and fast.
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Perhaps for one or two games though, the best thing Moyes could do is drop Antonio down to the bench. Jarrod Bowen can play through the middle and perhaps that’s a change that needs to happen.