For the first time since his arrival from Slavia, Vladimír Coufal was missing from the basic line-up of West Ham United. His deputy – Ryan Fredericks – manager David Moyes after a goalless draw at St. Mary’s Stadium picked up.
Not even such a conservative coach as Moyes undoubtedly had a choice. After the Christmas holidays, West Ham is tossing around in a hell of a busy program that includes three sharp matches in just five days, so the Scottish coach had to partly spin an increasingly tired line-up on Tuesday.
Just two days after hard work against Brighton, the Hammers suffered an exhausting, even and finally a draw duel.
They only have two days to rest. They will run on the English Premier League again on Friday, facing the glowing Everton of Carl Ancelotti in Liverpool’s Goodison Park.
Will Tomáš Souček be present?
In England, in recent days, speculation has begun as to whether a current Czech midfielder can continue unscathed in the current frantic regime. In short, Moyes does not have adequate compensation for him and Declan Rice in the very heart of the team, so in this case a significant saving of the forces of key midfielders seems impossible.
After Sunday’s duel with Brighton (2: 2), doubts appeared in the London media about the seemingly unbreakable shadow of a twenty-five-year-old Czech. The adjectives “sluggish” and “sloppy” assigned to his performance indicated concerns about whether Souček was short of breath.
Two days later, however, the player with the number 28 on the jersey offered a strong answer.
Even in the sixteenth game of the season, he played a full portion of minutes and significantly contributed to the fact that West Ham kept a clean sheet against the “Saints” with Danny Ings or Theo Walcott.
“Southampton had one extra day off, so I’m glad we showed the same energy as they did in the last twenty minutes. Paradoxically, we grew up as the match progressed,” Moyes said after the match.
Even directly from Souček’s side, the second half was impressive, paradoxically especially the complete conclusion.
In it, the Czech national team moved in a huge space, defended, attacked, aggressively attacked, took balls, filled spaces, withdrew between stoppers and ran into the lime so that he could make a decision again from the air. In the end, this did not happen, although he was able to reach several promising positions in the penalty area again.
“Good second half. We have no idea where he draws all his energy from,” the Football.London server wrote in its review. Souček was awarded seven, in the Evening Standard the Czech footballer got six.
Tomáš Souček in a duel with Theo Walcott. | Photo: Reuters
He was the best player of the match on WhoScored.com, which analyzes performance using an algorithm consisting of many individual statistics showing a player’s contribution to the team, as on Sunday with Brighton.
Doesn’t fatigue catch up with him? Souček persistently refuses something like this.
“It suits me, it’s not a problem. I was used to playing in Slavia all the time, twice a week,” a man who hadn’t missed a minute in the current year of the Premier League told the club website.
His compatriot Vladimír Coufal was given the opportunity to hit on Tuesday. His demanding program thickened even more due to family joys, and his daughter Natálie was born at Christmas.
He was replaced on the right edge of the defense by Ryan Fredericks, who entered the base for the first time since the end of September. The 28-year-old Englishman certainly did not disappoint and earned praise from Moyes. Like debuting stopper Craig Dawson.
“I wasn’t happy with how we played the last few matches. In addition, there are other players who seem to be doing well in training, I wanted to give them a chance to show up. Fredericks played very well and Dawson did a great job,” said the 57-year-old from Glasgow.
According to Evening Standard, however, Coufal clearly remains number one even after the likeable Fredericks performance.
“He worked well with Jarmolenko on the right, but he did too little to frighten Coufal as the first choice,” the evening paper wrote.