West Ham United recruited well during the summer and some have backed them for a good season during 2019/20.
Under the management of Manuel Pellegrini, it’s pretty easy to see why. The Chilean is proven in the Premier League; winning the title with Manchester City during his time at the Etihad.
One man who he signed last summer was expected to do big things at the London Stadium. Jack Wilshere swapped Arsenal for West Ham ahead of last season, but unsurprisingly spent lots of time out injured.
Having been restricted to eight Premier League appearances last term, he was expected to be like a new signing this season.
That hasn’t happened and although the season is still in its early stages, the 27-year-old isn’t doing the job that Pellegrini signed him to do.
The prospect of Wilshere alongside Declan Rice looked an exciting one. The man with 54 England caps have a crystal clear remit; to move the ball quickly and link midfield with the attack.
On Saturday, the £100,000-a-week (Spotrac) star was hooked at half-time. In 45 minutes he made just 10 passes, compared to 50 made by Rice in the same period of time.
The thing that is hampering West Ham is that when Wilshere toils, Rice’s task becomes twice as difficult. At times during the first half of Saturday’s game with Brighton, Rice was essentially doing the job of two players.
Ultimately the conundrum for Pellegrini is how long he gives Wilshere to rediscover his form. There is a question as to whether he will get back to his very best form given the number of injuries he has accumulated. His pre-season form was good, however, offering optimism that all is not lost just yet.
Back in 2014/15, the midfielder went to Bournemouth to rediscover his form. Playing regular saw him shake off the ring rust at essentially win back his place in the Arsenal team.
Maybe playing regular for a prolonged period of time is the answer. The dilemma for Pellegrini, however, is just how much time does he give Wilshere to start proving his worth to the team?