It was refreshing to have the West Ham board appoint a new manager in Manuel Pellegrini soon after the 2017/18 season.
This means the new manager has a lot of time on his hands to work with the players and get the best out of them before the season starts.
With reports that Pellegrini has been given a £75million transfer budget, he will also have the necessary time to approach and try to sign the players he needs to beef up the squad.
However, perhaps the biggest benefit of appointing a new manager early on is that he has enough time not only to develop first team players but also to look at the youth team prospects. With several youngsters making their break into the first team last season, more are also expected to follow this term.
Some of the youngsters West Ham fans can look forward to include the following…
The 2017/18 season was probably Declan Rice’s breakout season but much more is expected from him in the upcoming season.
Performing superbly in the games he was asked to play, it was no surprise to see him picked as the Hammer of the Year runner-up at end of the season awards.
With expectations high that Declan will put in the same sort of performances in the 2018/19 season, punters can tip him to go one step further and be named the Hammer of the Year by placing their bets at NetBet.
Nathan Holland is expected to go on the pre-season tour with the first team the second time after his first last season. The right winger was admired hugely by Slaven Bilic and his successor David Moyes.
However, the poor performance from the team at the start of the season meant it was a difficult call for Bilic to put him into the team at the expense of more experienced players, while an untimely injury soon after David Moyes’ arrival meant he had to sit out most of the season in rehab.
Manuel Pellegrini who has already visited all youth teams is said to have been impressed by Nathan and if he has a good pre-season, then it’s a guarantee he will feature regularly for the first-team next season.
Browne has had an unlucky run with injuries, which have limited his appearances with the U23s. However, he is still regarded as one of West Hams’ best young prospects.
With his huge stature, Browne is obviously suited to the Premier League. The only question is will he stay injury free for a long time in order to give the new manager time to see him perform.
If he can stay injury free, then he is surely going to make his break into the first team this season.
Quina made some first-team appearances last season especially in Cup games where he showed he has what it takes to perform at the highest level.
However, just like Brown and Holland, he has been unlucky with injuries. A prolonged injury-free run is what Quina wants and if he can stay fit and impresses during the preseason, then he will have his spot in the first team next season.