By West Ham Zone speaking to Frank McAvennie

18th Jul, 2022 | 9:10pm

Pundit: Declan Rice new role affected Tomas Soucek form, hopes he doesn't leave West Ham United

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… 

Tomas Soucek and Declan Rice’s lack of communication led to the former’s poor form last season for West Ham, according to Frank McAvennie.

The Czech Republic midfielder managed just six goals in all competitions for the Hammers during the 2021/22 campaign, down from his total of 10 the season before despite playing ten extra games.

That form saw his contract talks with the club stalled [ExWHUemployee, June 1], with Moyes believing that his performances didn’t warrant a pay-rise at the London Stadium according to reports. However former Irons forward McAvennie feels it can be easily addressed with simple communication and hopes the 27-year-old doesn’t leave West Ham this summer.

“I think, this is what I think happened last year,” he told West Ham Zone.

“Declan started going forward. He started running with the ball and doing what he’s good at. When he runs forward, it means Soucek can’t get in the box because one of them has to sit. I think he was doing that a lot more, going forwards, and I don’t think Soucek knew how to do it (sit deep). I really don’t.

His game is all about getting in the box and scoring goals. Arriving late, and scoring goals and it didn’t work. I think it’s because Declan.. listen, talk to each other.

They don’t talk to each other. Sit in the dressing room and say look, ‘I’m getting caught here and we’ve got to work it out.’ It’s not rocket science.

If he goes forward, I get Soucek wants to say I’ll get on the end of Declan’s cross, but when it doesn’t and the ball gets cut out, it means the two of them are forward and nobody is in the midfield. So we were getting caught out a bit. It’s just communication you know.

I think he’s a good player Soucek, I really do. By all accounts a great lad, all he wants to do is play football. I wouldn’t want to see anyone like that leaving, that’s for sure.”