Roshane Thomas has been speaking on the latest edition of the U Irons podcast, where he revealed who he would drop to make way for summer signing Said Benrahma.
The former Brentford forward joined West Ham United on loan last summer before making the move permanent in January. Since his arrival at the capital club, Benrahma has featured 26 times for east London outfit, however, only nine of those have come via Premier League starts.
David Moyes’ men have been the surprise package of the 2020/21 season so far. The Hammers currently sit in fourth position in the Premier League standings and are chasing Champions League qualification, something few were predicting at the start of the campaign.
The impressive performances of his teammates have made it hard for the Algeria international to break into the starting XI, but Thomas has suggested who he would drop in place on the 25-year-old.
He said: “Of course, sometimes Benrahma might be a bit of a headache or you’re scratching your head thinking, ‘What on earth are you doing?’ But it’s more pros than cons when it comes to Benrahma, in my opinion.
“And I look at this current team right now in terms of who could lose their place, and I reckon it’d be Pablo Fornals. He [Benrahma] just comes along and gets the job done. And I feel like Moyes just needs to unleash him. Unleash him now, because he’s good. Yeah, sometimes he can do the odd trick that gets you frustrated, but I feel like he’s much more of a threat in the offensive end than Fornals.”
TIF Thoughts on Benrahma…
Benrahma arrived from the Championship with a big reputation and has shown glimpses that he is capable of replicating his Brentford form on the biggest stage.
Moyes has understandably been cautious with the winger’s game time, given the impressive performances of his side this season, but now could be the time to gift his £20m signing a run of games to prove his worth.
With European football well within West Ham’s sights, they’ll need their whole squad to play their part from now until the end of the campaign, and Benrahma has the talent to play a significant role in their Champions League charge.
However, Pablo Fornals currently ranks higher than the Algerian in terms of ratings (WhoScored) and has started the last two games for the Hammers. He received an impressive 7/10 rating (football.London) for his performance in the club’s last game against Manchester City, which was the joint-highest of any player for the Hammers, so if Moyes was to drop Fornals then it would appear to be a rather harsh decision.