Adrian San-Miguel: The Keeper Comeback Hero

Adrian

West Ham United’s Spanish goalkeeper Adrian San-Miguel impressed fans and Pundits alike wildly with a superb display of saves in last Sunday’s narrow defeat to League leaders Manchester City at The Etihad Stadium.

His performance has piled pressure on regular No1 and England man Joe Hart, who has shipped the most goals in The Premier League this season, the man who had originally displaced him after making a loan move from The Citizens in the summer.

Adrian is now set to regain his starting spot for Saturday’s visit of Chelsea to The London Stadium with many suggesting that the Spaniard will be preferred by Hammers Boss David Moyes, but it wouldn’t be the first time he has played his way off the substitutes’ bench and back onto the pitch, far from it in fact.

Joining in the summer of 2013, the shot-stopper made his Claret & Blue debut in The League Cup against Cheltenham Town that August and by Christmas, his Cup performances were playing him into Sam Allardyce’s League thoughts.

Having impressed in The Cup win at White Hart Lane, the former Real Betis man was drafted in for his first League assignment, a tricky trip to Old Trafford and an affair in which he performed well despite conceding three goals.

This meant that he was given a home PL debut in a tough London Derby with Arsenal on Boxing Day.

Making all kinds of saves to deny the crème de la crème of The Gunners attack, Adrian let two tame Theo Walcott efforts past him as the visitors came back to claim a 1-3 triumph.

Subsequently, the keeper was dropped for the home tie with West Bromwich Albion and away trip to Craven Cottage with Jussi Jaaskelainen coming back in, but he did not let that deter him and came back fighting.

Despite heavy margins of defeats in Cup appearances against Nottingham Forest and The Blue Moon, the shot-stopper was reinstated for The Premier League trip to The Cardiff City Stadium and contributed heavily to a crucial away win.

Adrian would go on to keep his place for the rest of the season, helping to guide us to safety, in part by a Man of the Match showing in the draw with Jose Mourinho’s West Londoners at Stamford Bridge.

One successful campaign for the keeper later, his position in the first-team came under threat once more with the signing of Darren Randolph from Birmingham City, who filled in when he was either injured or suspended during the 2015/2016 campaign.

But, by the time Slaven Bilic’s second season in East London came around, Randolph was threatening to displace Adrian after showing form when filling in for the keeper.

The inevitable happened in early November 2016, when the Spaniard made a win costing error at The London Stadium against Stoke City, charging out off his line and allowing Bojan a simple tap-in equaliser.

His Irish teammate was drafted in for the League trip to White Hart Lane the following week and Adrian went back to assuming the role of Cup goalkeeper.

This continued until spring of this year as Randolph’s performances Deteriorated, climaxing with a woeful showing away at Sunderland and meaning that the Spanish International returned once again, immediately keeping three consecutive clean sheets and seeing out the campaign.

However, the summer capture of Hart from City during the most recent Transfer window (summer 2017) placed his playing time in doubt once again, being restricted to appearances only in Cups.

With two clean sheets out of three in The Carabao Cup in recent months and Sunday’s showing making the right impression on new Manager Moyes, could Adrian San-Miguel be about to meet The Blues once again, making the third comeback of his Hammers Career?

About the Author

Luke Glanville
Lead Writer and Site Manager of MTJAC, Sub-Editor for the Falbros Media Group.