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Areola’s injury could hurt West Ham’s European ambition in the run-in

Areola's injury could hurt West Ham's European ambition in the run in

West Ham United goalkeeper Alphonse Areola could be out for a while after picking up an injury in the disappointing 4-3 defeat to Newcastle United over the weekend.

As if the nature of the gut-wrenching defeat wasn’t enough, we also lost our first-choice goalkeeper Areola, who had to be replaced at half time with Lukasz Fabianski taking his place between the sticks.

The gaffer David Moyes has confirmed that he won’t be available for Tuesday night’s crunch London derby showdown against Tottenham Hotspur at the London Stadium.

Moyes said (via the club’s official website): “Alphonse has hurt his groin. We’re hopeful that it’s not too serious, but he won’t be available on Tuesday night.

“He might be back quite quickly, so we’ll just have to see how things develop over the coming days.”

Areola’s injury could have dire consequences for West Ham

West Ham fans held their collective breath when Areola felt pain in his thigh and handed over kicking duties to Konstantinos Mavropanos. 

However, Moyes’ optimism is a lifeline, and let’s all hope the “Big Cat” isn’t sidelined for long as his impact on our campaign has been nothing short of exceptional.

While clean sheets might not tell the whole story (four in 27 Premier League games), his 4.2 saves per game and a phenomenal 73% save percentage solidify him as one of the best shot-stoppers in the league.

Beyond the raw numbers, Areola’s presence exudes a confidence that ripples through the backline. He consistently prevents an average of 2.75 goals per game, a stat that highlights his immense contribution to our success.

Losing him for an extended period would be a major blow to our hopes of landing a European spot in the crucial Premier League run-in. 

Not to mention we’re also locked in a mouth-watering Europa League quarter-final against Bundesliga leaders Bayer Leverkusen.

The lack of experienced backup options is another worry. While the dependable Fabianski provides a safety net, his own injury history raises concerns.  

Our only other option is the 23-year-old Joseph Anang who is yet to make his debut for Moyes’ side but he’s in line for a slot on the bench in tomorrow’s contest against Spurs.

Areola’s absence would undoubtedly be a setback, but we can only echo Moyes’ optimism and hope for a swift recovery.

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