Many West Ham United supporters were intrigued to see Arthur Masuaku missing from David Moyes’ 18-man squad for the visit to Liverpool on Monday.
The full-back turned out against Manchester City last week and came through the game at Etihad unscathed.
Masuaku did endure a tough outing against the current Premier League title holders, with Bernando Silva giving the DR Congo international the runaround for a lot of the match.
Following the announcement of Moyes’ squad to face Liverpool, speculation was rife that Masuaku had been dropped by Scot.
The 26-year-old struggled against City, but he’s also drawn criticism quite a few times in recent weeks.
It turns out, though, that Masuaku was in fact not axed in a show of ruthlessness by Moyes – he actually missed out through illness according to football.london.
Despite not feeling up to playing, £40,000-a-week man Masuaku (Spotrac) was present at Anfield to support his teammates.
TBR’s view – Masuaku facing battle to regain place
Masuaku’s illness saw Moyes deploy a traditional flat back four at Anfield, with Aaron Cresswell shifting back out to left-back.
The Englishman has, in recent times, been operating as a left-sided centre-half, but found himself back in a more familiar role against the Reds.
Despite conceding three goals – and the level of opposition must be taken into account – the system appeared much better for West Ham.
The performance was admirable from the Hammers, and against any other side they might have come away with a point or more.
Masuaku will now have to bust a gut in training to regain his starting berth, because Cresswell has surely now jumped ahead of him in the pecking order.