By West Ham Zone speaking to Frank McAvennie

21st Aug, 2022 | 8:10am

Pundit calls for Gianluca Scamacca to start over Michail Antonio for West Ham United vs Brighton

We’re delighted to welcome former West Ham United striker Frank McAvennie as our exclusive columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at the London Stadium

Frank McAvennie has called for David Moyes to drop Michail Antonio and start Gianluca Scamacca for West Ham when they face Brighton on Sunday.

Antonio has started the first two Premier League games against Manchester City and Nottingham Forest and couldn’t help the team avoid two defeats, while Scamacca notched his first goal for the club in his first start against Viborg on Thursday night.

The Jamaica international came off the bench to get his first goal of the season in that game too, but McAvennie believes the Italian striker deserves the nod in the league next and hopes that the decision could kick Antonio into gear.

“I would give Scamacca a run because Antonio’s not doing it,” he told West Ham Zone.

“As I say, competition is everything. Leave him out, put Scamacca up front, give him a couple of games and let Antonio watch and fight.

And hopefully when he comes out, I was watching him [on Sunday] and his body… he was holding people off but at the end of last year he’d have shrugged off a challenge and run away with the ball.

Sunday he was shouting ‘ref’ and shouting at the referee and I’m thinking, ‘that’s not you, you’re better than that.’

Get away with the ball and if he holds you back it’s a foul. But he was shouting at the referee and the ref was saying play on.”

It’s a swift change of heart from McAvennie, who initially felt that Antonio would remain as the starting striker for the club this season.

However a poor start to the season has seen him change his mind. Antonio has struggled in the first two games and a change of personnel could see the team improve their chances of picking up their first points of the season.