Moyes acknowledges frustrations with West Ham ace but claims that has something others don’t

West Ham manager David Moyes has opened up about his mixed feelings towards midfielder Pablo Fornals, recognizing the frustrations the player can bring but highlighting his unique qualities, relays the HammerNews. The Hammers recently secured a 3-2 victory over bitter rivals Tottenham in a pre-season London derby Down Under, with the match shedding light on Fornals’ contrasting performances.

The encounter was described by Australian commentators as a “Tottenham procession,” although it is important to remember that pre-season matches primarily focus on fitness rather than the final score. The game encapsulated Fornals’ recent West Ham career, showcasing moments of skillful touches and intelligent passes, alongside instances of frustration where his lack of pace and agility seemed to hinder both him and the team.

Fornals was a regular fixture in Moyes’ West Ham lineup two seasons ago, but he found game time harder to come by last term, leading to his admission of deep disappointment. The Spaniard’s emotional outpouring when he scored the crucial goal against AZ Alkmaar, securing West Ham’s place in the Europa Conference League final, spoke volumes about his commitment to the club.

Guardian journalist Jacob Steinberg recently suggested that Fornals could face an uncertain future at West Ham, and now his manager has offered an honest assessment of the player following the win over Tottenham. Despite Fornals’ relatively quiet second half where he struggled to assert himself on the ball as Spurs dominated possession, it was his brilliant through ball that set up Gianluca Scamacca’s winning goal.

Moyes candidly acknowledged Fornals’ ability to frustrate at times while recognizing his unique contributions: “We (West Ham management staff) sometimes moan because he (Fornals) does something, and we wonder, ‘What are you trying, Pablo?’” Moyes commented after the game. “But he is someone who has always come up with a pass or a goal for us in crucial moments. He made a really crucial pass through for Gianluca to run in and finish.”

West Ham fans have often expressed their dissatisfaction with Moyes’ decision to deploy Fornals on the left flank, with occasional appearances as a left wingback. Many believe that the “Cockney Carzola” is at his best when deployed in a more central role, where his exceptional passing vision can unleash maximum damage.

It is worth remembering that West Ham signed Fornals from Villarreal after his impressive performances as a second striker for Spain’s Under 21 team during their victorious 2019 European Championship campaign. With the departures of Manuel Lanzini and Declan Rice from the club, there is a void to be filled in West Ham’s central midfield options, potentially providing Fornals with an opportunity to shine in his preferred position.