Former West Ham United defender Rufus Brevett has urged the club's manager to be brave next season.
West Ham are facing a very important period looking ahead to next season, with Slaven Bilic at Upton Park likely to be under real pressure before the move to the Olympic Stadium.
However, Brevett has suggested that it’s vital the gaffer doesn’t overlook the importance of continuing to develop younger players at the club.
“I think it’s so difficult for younger players. Managers are under so much pressure to win games that if you put youngsters in, it’s a gamble because you don’t know what you’re going to get. You need a manager who is brave and will stick younger players in,” he said.
West Ham do have some good examples of recent success when it comes to develop youngsters.
Looking back, they did well with the likes of James Tomkin and Mark Noble and also have some more contemporary success stories such as Reece Burke.
The younger players are so important at any club predominantly because they create extra squad options for a manager and provide a spine running through the heart of the team for a number of years.
They are also important when it comes to protecting the identity of a football club and maintaining a positive relationship alongside the club’s support base.
If West Ham can get the balance right next season between experience, the right sort of new players coming in and promoting youngsters from the youth system, there’s no reason the club can’t push to compete in the top half of the table.