Robert Snodgrass’s West Ham United story is one to warm the cockles of one’s heart this Christmas.
The Scotland winger has openly admitted his first six months in Claret and Blue following his January 2017 move from Hull City did not go to plan, for a variety of reasons.
Snodgrass’s opportunities dried up and he subsequently spent last season on loan at Championship club Aston Villa, rebuilding both his confidence and reputation for being a technically-gifted, creative, attacking midfield player.
The only blip on an otherwise successful campaign came in his final appearance for the Villans, a 1-0 Play-Off final defeat by Fulham at Wembley in May.
Seven months on and Snodgrass’s difficult start in a West Ham shirt is a distant memory, with the 31-year-old appearing in all but one of the club’s 17 Premier League matches this season.
Indeed, the No11’s performance at Craven Cottage was just the latest in a series of truly outstanding displays in a West Ham shirt, the most-recent of which came against the same opponent who denied his Villa team promotion.
Snodgrass has been a key figure in the Hammers’ four-match winning run, contributing three assists and two goals.
According to one leading statistical analysis website, he was West Ham’s best player in the victories over Cardiff City, Crystal Palace and Fulham – as well as being third-best at Newcastle United.
A deeper dive into the numbers makes a very strong case to back that assessment. Consider the following facts:
- No West Ham player has covered more ground in the last four matches than Snodgrass’s 44.18km. Captain Mark Noble, who has historically led in that category, covered 40.6km.
- In the wins over Newcastle, Crystal Palace and Fulham, Snodgrass covered more ground than any of his teammates.
- No West Ham player has made more key passes than Snodgrass’s 13. He led in that category against Cardiff, Palace and Fulham and was second only to Marko Arnautovic at Newcastle.
- He has delivered a team-high 32 crosses from open play, leading West Ham in that area in all four matches.
With a positive and mature attitude to his football, a strong work ethic, the ability to perform at a high level in the Premier League and a manager who both believes in him and he believes in, Robert Snodgrass’s renaissance has been a joy for West Ham supporters to behold – and long may it continue!