Custom Search 1

Senegal ace Sakho enjoying his hammer time

INFLUENTIAL: West Ham's Diafra Sakho

THE WORRIES that surrounded Diafra Sakho’s recent shoulder injury underline the immediate impact the striker has had at Upton Park.

In heading home what proved to be West Ham’s winning goal in the 2-1 defeat of champions Manchester City, the Senegalese claimed a record sixth goal in six Premier League starts.

The 24-year-old has been one of the revelations, not to mention bargains, of the season so far following his £3.5m summer move from Metz in the French second tier.

He was prolific in two seasons in Alsace-Lorraine, where he helped Metz to consecutive promotions before making by far his most considerable jump in joining West Ham.

Injured or not, Sakho is unlikely to maintain his marvellous scoring rate, which stands at seven in eight matches in all competitions, and will soon be competing with the returning Andy Carroll, but he has the all-round ability to ensure that he can continue to make significant contributions to the team during inevitable fallow periods.

The forward is one of the individuals who enable Sam Allardyce’s side to play in a variety of styles in order to best counter their opponents.

His aerial prowess has delivered five headed goals thus far and services Allardyce’s penchant for crosses and long passes, while his ability to get in behind defenders enables more intricate options when the occasion permits it.

When West Ham are defending, his willingness to impose himself on opponents has endeared Sakho to the Upton Park faithful, who appreciate this blend of craft and industry.

His work has complemented that of his striker partner, Enner Valencia, and provided an outlet for Stewart Downing, who has also flourished in his new role at the tip of a midfield diamond.

The West Ham manager was keen to touch on Sakho’s partnership with Valencia after the Manchester City match.
“I don’t think they really know how good they have been,” he said.

“They just come here, they want to play football and I don’t think they realise what an impact they have made and the rest of the team have been lifted by those two.”

If Allardyce is convinced then Senegal coach Alain Giresse is less moved. The Frenchman has not called up Sakho since May’s friendly with Kosovo and the forward has criticised Giresse’s “lack of courage”.

Strong words, but it is difficult to think Sakho will be waiting much longer.

Subscribe to The Voice database!

We'd like to keep in touch with you regarding our daily newsletter, Voice competitions, promotions and marketing material and to further increase our reach with The Voice readers.

If interested, please click the below button to complete the subscription form.

We will never sell your data and will keep it safe and secure.

For further details visit our privacy policy.

You have the right to withdraw at any time, by clicking 'Unsubscribe'.

Facebook Comments