COMMENT By Dominic Toner
West Ham manager Slaven Bilic should name defender Sam Byram in the starting line-up against Watford on Saturday.
The 23-year-old should be recalled to the starting XI at right-back and allow Cheikhou Kouyate to move back into the centre of midfield.
The Hammers have used Kouyate as a full-back during parts of the current season, but the powerhouse is much more effective in the middle of the park.
Byram should be given the opportunity to impress for the Londoners and he will provide the side with a much better balance.
West Ham would have two natural full-backs playing if they start with Byram and Aaron Cresswell, and they should be able to support the attack with their crosses.
Byram has endured a frustrating time since he moved to the Hammers in 2016 from Leeds with the reputation of an exciting right-back.
The defender has seen his chances restricted due to a number of injuries, including a hamstring one which kept him out between October and January this season.
However, he has managed to return to full fitness and now should be the time to give him a real attempt to cement his position in the team.
Byram has made 16 appearances for West Ham since his arrival and has shown in glimpses his qualities.
He could be a great asset to Bilic’s team if he can recapture the form he showed at Elland Road and must get a big chance to impress against Watford.
In other West Ham news, Bilic has delivered an injury blow as a 28-year-old is doubtful against Watford.