A vigorous fixture schedule coming up for West Ham United should result in several academy players being given the chance to step up by manager David Moyes.

With injuries to key players hitting the West Ham squad in recent weeks and with a tough and enduring run of fixtures coming up, now could be a good time for Moyes to test out some youth players.

With a European semi final and a chance to finish in the top seven of the Premier League, these three players could be pivotal to the success of West Ham United this season. 

Aji Alese

West Ham United U23 captain Aji Alese is the most obvious option for David Moyes going forward.

With three out of four central defenders potentially injured until the end of the season and Craig Dawson suspended for Sunday’s visit of Arsenal, it doesn’t seem like Moyes has any other choice but to put his faith in the youngster, while he is highly rated by many.

Aji Alese West HamThe 21-year-old has regularly featured on the bench for the Hammers’ senior side during this campaign, and has been training with the first team for quite some time now.

He also impressed when called upon in the Hammers’ Europa League final group stage clash against Dinamo Zagreb.

The next step in his career is regular action for the senior squad, and what better time than now to give him that opportunity.

Sonny Perkins

Sonny Perkins is another youngster who is ready for the step up to the senior team. The 18-year-old winger has already featured five times off the bench this season.

Despite the club’s flurry of attacking players, a lot of our attacking forwards look exhausted in league games that follow a European night.

Perkins has shown in West Ham’s academy, with 12 goals already this season, that he deserves more chances – and David Moyes seems keen on the youth prospect.

Jamal Baptiste 

One of West Ham’s most exciting prospects to be coming through the academy is 18-year-old Jamal Baptiste.

Like the others, Baptiste has impressed for the U23s this season and often appears on the bench for the senior side. Baptiste is also highly regarded by many fans and is a solid backup option in defence.

While he may not be as ready as the other aforementioned academy prospects, David Moyes definitely sees potential in his talents – another senior call-up should not be too far away.