Former West Ham United defender James Collins bemoaned the appalling defending of Said Benrahma for the opening goal of Newcastle United’s 5-1 demolition of the Irons at the London Stadium last night.
What did Collins say about Benrahma?
The Hammers defeated Southampton 1-0 at the weekend to head into this contest with the Magpies in relatively high spirits.
However, after just six minutes, any sense of hope was extinguished by some shocking defending by the winger.
After a corner was headed away, Allan Saint-Maximin found himself being tracked by the Algerian, before the skilful Frenchman effortlessly bypassed his non-existent marker and delivered an inviting cross for Callum Wilson to open the scoring.
Collins could not believe the ease with which the Newcastle attacker breezed past Benrahma.
Speaking on BBC Radio 5 Live he said:
“Terrible from West Ham, they got off to such a good start, high tempo, the fans were behind them. Benrahma’s defending to stop the cross from St-Maximin is shocking.
“A man of Callum Wilson’s quality, you would expect him to score from there but from West Ham’s point of view it is terrible defending. David Moyes is absolutely furious with his team. That is a real killer blow for West Ham.”
It was a damaging defeat for the Hammers that leaves them sitting perilously outside the drop zone only on goal difference.
Are West Ham in danger of getting relegated?
This loss means that the East London outfit has only won three of their last 16 league games – a run that has included heavy defeats against Arsenal, Brighton, and Newcastle.
The majority of the blame will lie on the shoulders of the West Ham backline, which failed to contain Eddie Howe’s inform side.
However, the inability of Moyes’ attackers, including the £19m-rated man to undertake their defensive duties was equally destructive in this humiliation.
The 27-year-old only won three of his seven ground duels and lost possession a mammoth 11 times to pile pressure on an already feeble defence.
For a Premier League side, who have achieved consecutive top-half finishes in the past two seasons, to defend in that manner was a damning condemnation of their huge decline.
Collins was furious and questioned their top-flight credentials. He said:
“You can’t defend the way West Ham have tonight. David Moyes has got a big job on his hands to get these players and the fans onside and looking forward to games where they think they can win.”
With only seven points separating 12th-placed Crystal Palace and bottom club Southampton, the fight to avoid relegation is set to be an enthralling battle.