Despite losing to Spurs on Saturday there are still many positives to take from the performance as long as the team keep up that kind of performance up going into the next game.
Three players in particular stood out during the game, the first being Stewart Downing. He got quite a lot of criticism last season which wasn’t deserved at all. On Saturday he seemed to be at his best and showed just why Sam wanted to buy him at the end of last summer. He showed a lot of pace and put many vital crosses into the box and also came very close to scoring, if it wasn’t for Lloris being the keeper that he is, it would have been the goal we all wanted.
Aaron Cresswell is the second player that performed outstandingly during the game and despite a scare when he took a bad knock to his knee, he was able to carry on performing well. In his first Premier League game he was able to show he wasn’t intimidated by the big stage and was still able to perform at the level he did in the championship. He was also able to put to bed any worries about his defensive skills as he made at least three fantastic challenges that stopped us conceding earlier than we did.
Kouyate is the third player to mention from the game and he was just fantastic from start to finish, there is no other way to describe him. He managed to have a 97% pass completion rate and that’s really not something we’re just to from our players, especially not last season. He was also able to fill in central defence when Collins went off but truly he is wasted there, which is why it’s important to get a defender in so he can carry on midfield. As well taking a yellow card for the team after running the full length of the pitch, he made fans even happier in an interview after the game. Kouyate said he is not yet 100% in games and he has a lot more of give, which is a great positive fans and he also mentioned how good the atmosphere was at Upton Park was, like it always it.
We may have only played one game but I think these three players, alongside Adrian who made a super save on Saturday could be our most important players for the upcoming season.