West Ham United

West Ham United

Premier League • England

West Ham urged to ruthlessly sell struggling £50m pair who ‘aren’t proper players’

Kurt Zouma and David Moyes, West Ham

The West Ham defence is struggling this season

A former West Ham United striker has told the club to get rid of Kurt Zouma and Konstantinos Mavropanos as the defenders have been ‘pathetic’ at times this season.

West Ham can be lethal in attack on their day, with David Moyes able to use top stars such as Jarrod Bowen, Mohammed Kudus and Lucas Paqueta in forward areas. West Ham sit seventh in the Premier League table but are the highest team with a negative goal difference.

Indeed, Moyes’ side have a goal difference of minus four, having scored 45 and conceded 49.

The West Ham defence had a particularly awful month in February, letting in 14 goals in just five matches.

In terms of centre-backs, Mavropanos endured a torrid afternoon during the 2-2 draw with Burnley on Sunday, turning a Josh Cullen cross into his own net for Burnley’s second goal.

Club captain Zouma, meanwhile, has failed to recapture the solid form he previously showed in a West Ham shirt.

Frank McAvennie, who made 119 appearances for West Ham across two spells, has now hit Mavropanos and Zouma with scathing criticism.

He has suggested West Ham should sell the underperforming duo, who cost nearly £50million combined in transfer fees.

West Ham players ‘give gifts away’

“That defence – oh my God. Mavropanos gives gifts away every week – and Zouma,” he said in an interview with Football Insider.

“Those two at the back are not proper players sometimes and West Ham will concede goals when they play.

“I’m not confident of getting a clean sheet, they’re pathetic sometimes. You need to have a solid back four if you have these attacking players.

“I like [Vladimir] Coufal, I always have. But those two boys in the middle, surely [Angelo] Ogbonna is better than them? What’s happened to him?

“Mavropanos and Zouma look like they can’t run.”

West Ham have not kept a clean sheet since January 2 and will be hoping to end that terrible run in their next outing. The East London side host Freiburg in the second leg of their Europa League last-16 tie on Thursday, while their next league match is against Aston Villa on March 17.

READ MORE: Newcastle, West Ham tipped to sign brilliant left-back with mind-blowing 17 assists already this season