Ryan Fredericks: We need to be a lot sharper all over the pitch
Ryan Fredericks said West Ham United ‘need to be a lot sharper all over the pitch’ following the Irons’ 2-0 opening-day Premier League defeat by Newcastle United.
The Hammers had more possession, more shots on target and more corners than the Magpies, and hit the woodwork twice with the game still goalless, but failed to take their chances at London Stadium.
And, after allowing Newcastle Callum Wilson and Jeff Hendrick to mark their debuts with goals, Fredericks said West Ham need to show their quality at both ends of the pitch when they return to Premier League action at Arsenal on Saturday evening.
“We need to be a lot sharper all over the pitch,” he told Sky Sports. “We didn’t defend well at times. They didn’t cause us too much trouble, but their goals were pretty soft, so we need to change that.
“We need to create more than we did up front, but we’ve got good players up there and we’ve got good players at the back, so we just need to go again next week, get together during training this week, and I’m sure it’ll be better next week.
“I think we’re a team who it doesn’t matter who we’re playing against; it’s more about us on the day. We did well against some of the top six and top eight teams last season and I’m sure we’ll do it again.”
Individually, Fredericks produced an eye-catching performance, combining regularly with both Jarrod Bowen and substitute Andriy Yarmolenko down the right flank, delivering six crosses and a team-high five key passes.
However, any personal satisfaction the No24 felt was overshadowed by his frustration at the result.
And he agreed with Declan Rice’s summary of the Hammers' all-round performance.
“I’d agree with Dec that we couldn’t have played much worse,” he confirmed. “We ended last season well, we were flying, and we’ve come back and we’ve been training well and training hard and trying to do the same things, but Saturday definitely wasn’t good enough.
“We had the exact same team that went and dominated games most games at the back end of last season, even when we were playing some of the top teams in the league, but we just weren’t at it.
“It’s game one of a long season, so we’re not going to get too down.”