23-year-old handed first PL start in Bilic 4-4-2: West Ham best possible XI v Sunderland
COMMENT By Danny Wright
Jonathan Calleri should be given his first Premier League start for West Ham against Sunderland on Saturday.
The 23-year-old has only made 11 league appearances off the bench in his loan spell at the Hammers but Slaven Bilic has to play him after he put in a brilliant display in the win against Swansea last week.
Michail Antonio has been ruled out for the remainder of the season so this is the perfect time for Calleri to show that he should be made a permanent addition to the West Ham squad in the summer.
Bilic will struggle to field a strong team due to injury and suspensions plaguing his squad meaning that a change of formation is in order to get the best out of the players available.
The Croatian boss must line up with a 4-4-2 diamond with Calleri joining Andy Caroll up top who comes in for Andre Ayew after he struggled against Swansea.
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Mark Noble picked up his tenth yellow card of the campaign against the Welsh club so he will be forced to drop out for Sofiane Feghouli, who should start on the right wing.
Darren Randolph has been the better option over Adrian this season so he must start in goal.
Sam Byram, Jose Fonte, James Collins and Arthur Masuaku should all start in an unchanged back four – Aaron Cresswell is not expected to be fit in time for the trip to the Stadium of Light.
Cheikhou Kouyate has to play in the defensive midfield role with Manuel Lanzini moving in behind the strikers to accommodate Robert Snodgrass on the left wing.
The Hammers could find themselves as high as tenth in the Premier League standings if results go their way this weekend.
Bilic was recently told that he has to lead West Ham to a top half finish if he wants to keep his job at the London Stadium and he can make strides towards doing that if he makes these changes to his team.
In other West Ham news, Karren Brady has delivered a four-letter word response to a fan about this under-fire man.