Michail Antonio made a surprise start for West Ham United against Newcastle United in the Premier League yesterday, raising eyebrows for two significant reasons, writes the Hammer.News. First, Antonio had been sidelined with an injury over the past week, making his inclusion unexpected. Second, the exciting form displayed by West Ham’s newcomer, Mohammed Kudus, had led many to believe that he would be handed his first Premier League start for the club.
West Ham boss David Moyes is a fervent admirer of the 33-year-old forward, and it’s not hard to see why. Since Moyes took charge of the club for the second time in December 2019, Antonio has notched an impressive 48 goals for West Ham. Although Antonio was in discussions to depart from West Ham during the summer transfer window, he ultimately remained at the London Stadium.
While Antonio made a promising start to the season, his form has recently dipped. In contrast, Mohammed Kudus has been making a significant impact, which raises questions about the veteran striker’s role in the starting lineup.
After West Ham’s 2-2 draw with Newcastle at the London Stadium, Moyes addressed the media and shared his thoughts on Mohammed Kudus: “I thought the substitutes today made a bit of a difference, especially Mo, who gave us a different impetus and obviously then got us the equalizing goal as well, which helped us. We had our moments, and we got a bit from it when we played a bit better with the ball in the last 15 minutes, and Mo helped us in that situation, and we worked a goal, so we were pleased.”
Although Antonio, who earns approximately £100,000-a-week, made a start against Newcastle, his recent performances have not been up to par. As a result, many believe it’s time for Kudus to secure a regular spot in the starting lineup, potentially replacing the Jamaican international. David Moyes highlighted Kudus’s impact against Newcastle, indicating that he brings a new dimension to the team’s attack.
Kudus’s versatility allows him to play in various positions in the frontline or even in midfield. With his impressive display against Newcastle, the Ghanaian could be a compelling option to take on Antonio’s role, potentially giving West Ham a fresh attacking dimension in the Premier League. Moyes now faces a selection dilemma as he considers the lineup for future matches.