COMMENT By Will Butcher
Slaven Bilic would provide West Ham with a huge boost in their Premier League run-in by dropping captain Mark Noble against Swansea on Saturday.
Sky Sports reported that 29-year-old ace Noble is one of nine Premier League players that are currently on nine yellow cards for the season, and one away from a two-match ban.
However, after this weekend’s round of games, the ban is lifted to 15 yellow cards and would give Noble breathing space to play a crucial part in the Hammers fight against relegation.
Risking him against Paul Clement’s Swans on Saturday could see him pick up a tenth caution of the season and miss clashes against Sunderland and Everton on April 15 and 22 respectively.
Noble has been instrumental this season despite the east London outfit’s failure to replicate the form of 2015-16, having a hand in seven goals during his 32 league and cup outings.
Scoring five times, Noble has also provided two assists while boasting a successful pass completion rate of almost 87 per cent in the Premier League according to WhoScored.Com.
The Hammers are being slowly drawn into a relegation battle at the bottom of the Premier League, following five straight losses to the likes of Arsenal, Chelsea and Leicester.
Now just six points above 18th placed Hull, West Ham will be desperate to keep their best players fit and available for selection in order to avoid a surprise drop to the Championship.
That includes keeping uncapped English midfielder Noble available to play in Bilic’s starting eleven, as the skipper continues to be one of the first names on the team sheet.
In other West Ham news, Mark Lawrenson has predicted the outcome of Saturday’s clash between the Hammers and Swansea.