Monday 5th November 2018
George Lancaster – UCFB Multimedia Sports Journalism Student 2018
Felipe Anderson was one of West Ham’s many signings over the summer. He is the Hammers record signing; costing 40 million from Lazio. He was the player West Ham fans were most looking forward to see put on the claret and blue shirt.
It was always going to take time for the Brazilian to get used to the high intensity of The Premier League. However, 12 games in and only one goal to his name the fans were starting to question the 40 million price tag.
The fans were calling for Anderson to be dropped ahead of their game against Burnley. They wanted him to fight for his place in the team and not be selected just because he is the clubs record signing.
Manuel Pellegrini had spoken to Anderson about his work rate and his contribution to the team and that he needed to improve; otherwise he would have no choice but to drop him from the starting line-up.
In a must win game for West Ham, Pellegrini chose to stick by the Brazilian and name him in his starting line-up. The decision to start Anderson would go on to be one of the best decisions the newly appointed manager was to make, as he went on to play his best game in a Hammer’s shirt.
West Ham went on to win the game 4-2 with Anderson scoring two of the goals. He also hit the bar and had a shot cleared of the line. The fans were not just happy with his goals but the overall work rate he showed; tracking back, making crucial tackles to help out his full back, his willingness to always get on the ball and create chances for his teammates also stood out.
The crowd finally got to see the flare, pace and skill that they knew Anderson had in his locker. The performance resulted in him getting Man of the match and a standing ovation as he left the pitch.
West Ham fans hope this performance could be the start of something special with Anderson and that he could be a real star for the club and his national team going forward.
They now face bottom of the table Huddersfield Town in their next game.