West Ham United were humbled on Saturday and put in arguably their worst performance of the season as the Hammers were beaten 4-1 by Swansea City at the Liberty Stadium.
David Moyes’ men had the opportunity to end any worries over potential Premier League relegation by beating Carlos Carvahal’s side in South Wales, but in truth there was never a chance of this happening once the action started.
West Ham found themselves 4-0 down on the hour mark, with Andre Ayew scoring against his former club to rub salt in the wounds, before Michail Antonio scored a consolation.
The Hammers put in a defensive performance against Swansea and lacked ambition or inspiration in the final display, much to the fans’ horror.
As such, many of the West Ham faithful were surprised to see Joao Mario’s name left out of Moyes’ starting XI, whilst the Portugal international also remained an unused substitute in the defeat.
While the Inter Milan loanee is still finding his feet in English football, the versatile midfielder has shown his ability on the ball and technical prowess since arriving at the Hammers.
The West Ham fans took to Twitter before, during and after the game to bemoan Mario’s absence – the best tweets are here.
Mario AM Carvalho DM but I agree Mario should’ve played
— Philip 父 Wilkinson 父 (@PW57WHU) March 3, 2018
game for Mario too w his quick one touch passes could of created more & use last sub at least to play Browne for experience
— Joshua (@SchroerJr) March 3, 2018
For me next game OG, Hart, Mario, Antonio all have to start
— Steve (@Steve_WHU_) March 3, 2018
Chicharito has been useless in the 1st half. I'd sub him off at HT and bring on either Mario (try & outnumber Swansea in Midfield) or bring on Antonio & use his pace in behind / down the channel of the Swansea defence
— MR ⚒ (@WHU_MR2013) March 3, 2018
Is anyone else wondering why we didn't move kouyate to centre half and then bring mario on? #SWAWHU
— Daniel Gardner (@dgardner_whu) March 3, 2018
To the people who said we didn't need Mario today. hahahah. he is the reason we've been looking offensive recently
— DLew WHU (@MA_USA_Hammers) March 3, 2018
Kouyate is a donkey. Get him off bring and Mario on at half time.
— Sam Davies WHU (@samdaviesuk) March 3, 2018
Why bring Byram on!!! I put Kouyate at CB n bring Mario on
— ⚒⚒Tony⚒⚒coyi⚒⚒ (@tony_coyi3) March 3, 2018
Kouyate back to CB then and Mario on. Simple #COYI
— ⚒ Marky Perkins ⚒ (@Supagrova1973) March 3, 2018
I like the lineup, biggest wonder is why not Mario instead of Cheik, and maybe would have liked Collins over Reid, but let’s get behind the boys and take home 3 ⚒ #COYI
— Nick’s Sporting Goods 🏉🏈🏀⚽️ (@NickySports) March 3, 2018
love the fact that Rice is starting and that Chicharito is back in the XI, but very annoyed that neither Antonio nor Joao Mario is starting. it’s so negative. think this is a decent team though and can definitely get the job done, coyi https://t.co/MiGGjm28XO
— Jack (@Jvckist) March 3, 2018
Should of put Cheik center back then Mario on for extra creativity, Noble can then sit back and the front line can cause problems upfront
— West Ham Law (@WHU_LAW) March 3, 2018
Why didn't Mario start???
— ⚒️Adam Dear⚒️ (@Adam_Dear_123) March 3, 2018
Joao Mario deserves a chance to come on and link up sigh Arnie for half hour.
— West Hαm Sociαl (@WestHamSocial) March 3, 2018
Absolute joke Antonio and Mario are on the bench 😠 #westham
— lyndsey (@HeartOfLife_) March 3, 2018