Pundit Exclusive: West Ham £22m ace tipped to be axed & new role for talisman v Villa
Gabriel Agbonlahor has tipped West Ham winger Jarrod Bowen to be dropped and replaced with Michail Antonio against Aston Villa on Monday night.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley, the former Aston Villa and England forward claimed Sebastien Haller should keep his place in the side after his game-winning goal against Sheffield United last weekend.
Manager David Moyes confirmed Antonio was close to making the bench against the Blades after missing three games with a hamstring injury.
The 30-year-old spent most of his career as a right-winger but has been converted to a striker by Moyes.
He has scored 11 goals in his last 13 Premier League games in his new role but Agbonlahor has tipped him to return to the wing against Villa.
Asked by Football Insider whether Haller will be difficult to dislodge after netting his sixth goal of the season, Agbonlahor said: “That goal will be massive for him.
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“His body language as well looked like someone who was frustrated with himself and his lack of opportunities.
“That goal hopefully will set him off on a run of scoring because that’s what West Ham fans want to see. They want to see a player they paid a lot of money for to bring the goods.
“I look at places on that pitch, for me, Bowen has not performed in recent games.
“Antonio has played most of his career as a right-winger so maybe Bowen loses his place to Antonio and Haller keeps his place upfront. That might be something they look at.
“Or he could play two up front and Antonio plays off Haller. There are different ways of getting Antonio into that side because pace kills in the Premier League and you cannot have someone with the pace of Antonio on the bench.”
Bowen moved to the London Stadium for a reported £22million fee from Hull City in January.
The 23-year-old has started every Premier League games for the Hammers since making his league debut in February.
In other West Ham news, Danny Mills cannot believes what Moyes has said about Declan Rice.