Ryan Fredericks believes that Manuel Pellegrini’s new tactical approach will solidify the Hammers back-line this season, as they look to fix their woes from the 2017/18 Premier League campaign.
Speaking to the club’s official website, Fredericks spoke highly of the defensive training sessions the new manager has introduced, as the Chilean looks to strengthen a defence that shipped 68 goals last year.
With the joint-highest goals conceded in the top-flight last season, defensive reinforcements were of high priority for Pellegrini, with new additions Issa Diop, Fabien Balbuena, Lukasz Fabianski and Fredericks all added to the squad during the summer transfer window.
The 25-year-old right back has expressed that the work on the training ground has made notable improvements already, but there is still much more work to be done.
“We’re working on a lot of things in training defensive-wise,” Fredericks said. “It’s different to what any of the lads have done before, but I can see on the pitch that it’s working already.
“There are a few little things that we’ve got to get used to, but we’re not conceding chances every five or ten minutes."
Looking a lot more solid
“We’re looking a lot more solid and I think, if we cut out some of the silly mistakes, we’re going to be a much more solid team and harder to break down,” the versatile defender added.
This new system has been used to great effect at Pellegrini’s previous clubs, with the former Manchester City and Real Madrid boss utilising a 4-2-3-1 formation to display a brand of attacking football that fans of West Ham have been crying out for.
Fredericks joined the Hammers on a free transfer from Fulham, becoming Pellegrini’s first signing as new West Ham manager.
It is unknown whether Fredericks will be deployed as the first choice right-back under Pellegrini this season, or whether the Chilean will place his trust in the more experienced Pablo Zabaleta.
Either way the former Fulham and Tottenham defender showed huge promise in the Championship last season, as he was a main feature in the Cottagers promotion push in the last campaign.
The Hammers will be hoping for a strong start to the new Premier League season as they prepare to face Liverpool on the opening day.