West Ham co-owner David Gold admits boss faces tough dilemma over defenders ahead of Newcastle match

Collins, Song, Jenkinson

West Ham United co-owner David Gold has admitted manager Slaven Bilic faces a tough dilemma over who to play at right back against Newcastle United tonight.

The Hammers entertain the Magpies looking for their first home win of the last ever season at the Boleyn Ground.

Gold and fellow co-owner David Sullivan have backed their new boss to the tune of around £30 million this summer, bringing in players like Dimitri Payet, Angelo Ogbonna, Pedro Obiang, Michail Antonio, Nikica Jelavic and securing expensive loan deals for Alex Song, Victor Moses and Carl Jenkinson.

And it is Arsenal loan star Jenkinson who will have Bilic scratching his head according to Gold, as the defender returns from a one-game ban for the clash with Steve McClaren's men.

Bizarre start to the season

That's because of the circumstances surrounding what has been one of the most bizarre starts to a season for the Hammers.

They stole the show on the opening weekend with a stunning and convincing 2-0 win over title-hopefuls Arsenal at the Emirates.

But that was followed by a barely recognisable pair of performances in back-to-back defeats against Leicester City and Bournemouth at Upton Park, where Jenkinson had a particularly bad game and was sent off late on.

Then, just as dark clouds were threatening to gather so early in his reign, the Croatian boss pulled off a remarkable and historic first win over Liverpool at Anfield for 52 years - and by a 3-0 scoreline no less.

One common factor in both away victories was the presence of James Tomkins at right back, firstly because Jenkinson could not play against his parent club and then because he was suspended.

Right back at you

So does Bilic bring back Jenkinson, who offers a lot more than Tomkins going forward, or stick with Tomkins who has performed well out of position and looked solid in the Hammers' two wins so far?

Gold took to social networking site Twitter ahead of the game and said he sympathised with the quandary.

He said: "It will be interesting to see who Slaven selects to play at right back."

Who should start? The lowdown

Jenkinson was one of West Ham's best players last season and many West Ham fans were hopeful of signing him permanently this summer.

But Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger was keen to tie the pacy defender down to a new long-term deal which he agreed before being farmed out to the east Londoners for the second successive season.

Tomkins rarely lets West Ham down even when playing out of position.

He will find game time hard to come by given how impressive Winston Reid and Angelo Ogbonna have looked together in central defence for Bilic's side.

So he may find himself competing more with Jenkinson for a place in the side and tonight's match will show if Bilic rewards players by letting them keep the shirt if they perform for him.

Who should start at right back for West Ham against Newcastle?
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