By Sean Fisher

5th Oct, 2022 | 3:40pm

Thilo Kehrer: Adaptability at West Ham United comes from playing different positions every year

Thilo Kehrer has played both centre-back and right-back since arriving at West Ham in the summer, showing his unique versatility in defence.

Kehrer arrived at the London Stadium for £10million [The Guardian] in the summer and was initially brought in to bolster the club’s centre-back department.

His debut for the Hammers didn’t go too well, with the German international conceding a penalty against Brighton in a 2-0 defeat.

However, he recently shone at right-back during the club’s 2-0 win over Wolves, and he says that his adaptability comes from years of swapping positions during his youth.

Speaking to Sky Sports Germany, Kehrer said: “I was both footed very early on. I didn’t think much and tried to do the same things with both feet.

“I’ve always played different positions in youth teams, first in Stuttgart, then at Schalke in the Knappenschmiede.

“I didn’t change every game, more like a year in one position, a year in another. That’s why I can adapt very quickly to different tasks and positions.”

Vital versatility

Signing Kehrer has added depth to the entire West Ham back line. The 26-year-old looks capable of putting in shift anywhere across a back four – or a back five for that matter.

But his best performance to date came against Wolves on the right flank, just days after he shone for Germany in a similar role.

David Moyes was clearly watching and wanted to try Kehrer out as a right-back, and it was a very worthwhile experiment.

Kehrer shifting to the right allowed Craig Dawson back in at centre-back, and he too was a standout performer against Wolves.

Plus, with Vladimir Coufal struggling for form this season, Kehrer’s versatility allowed Moyes to hand him a much-needed rest. Hopefully Kehrer nails down a starting spot at right-back in the coming weeks and can be Coufal’s natural successor.

That’s one new signing settled into the starting XI, only Lucas Paqueta and Gianluca Scamacca to go!