West Ham new boys set for first start against Accrington
10:45 21 September 2016
The Hammers go into their EFL Cup tie tonight looking to end a run of four defeats on the trot
After four straight defeats in league and cup, West Ham boss Slaven Bilic is set to give some other players a chance to show what they can do as Accrington Stanley visit London Stadium in the third round of the EFL Cup tonight (Wednesday).
Still shocked by the capitulation of his team, and in particular the defence, in the 4-2 defeats against Watford and West Brom, Bilic wants a response against the League Two outfit, who dumped Premier League side Burnley out of the competition in round two.
And he hinted that there will be some changes for tonight’s game.
“This game is a good opportunity for us,” he said yesterday (Tuesday). “It is a good competition and we do not have to travel and we have some players who have been training really good, but haven’t played much so it will be good to give them a chance.”
Two of those are likely to be former Real Madrid right-back Alvaro Arbeloa and Swiss midfielder Edimilson Fernandes who are yet to make their debuts in claret and blue.
“We will possibly see them,” said Bilic, keeping his cards close to his chest. “They are ready to go and have been training hard.
“Some of our players have not played a competitive game. Arbeloa not since last season, while Fernandes has played for Sion and the Swiss under-21s.
“Some of these players will get a chance because we want to see them. They have been training really good, but we need to see them in a game.
“It is a risk, but I want to see them. There is no other way to do it and I have full confidence that they can do a job.”
Another player who is set to start the match tonight is young defender Reece Oxford who deserves his chance after having to sit through some calamitous displays by the defenders out on the pitch.
TAccrington Stanley should not pose too many problems for West Ham tonight, but Bilic is only too aware that the side has to give the fans something to cheer after the last two matches.
“We have conceded eight goals in two games which has put us into a situation which is not pleasant,” said the manager.
“Starting from tonight’s game we have three cup finals, with Accrington, Southampton and Middlesbrough.
“I am not happy and the boys know it and they have to show a reaction.
“We are not happy with the performances and the results and we need to start being consistent as a team for 90 minutes and then we will be all right.
“Accrington are a good side for their level. They have already had their cup final when they beat Burnley, now this is their Champions League final.”