We haven’t had a hat trick yet at West Ham this season – but elsewhere, a former Hammer’s luck is coming in. The wonder that is Sofiane Feghouli scored three goals against Kasimpasa in a recent Turkish Spor Toto Super Lig game as his Galatasaray team romped to a 4-1 win.
Winger Feghouli got his first in the 28th minute, and then added to his tally with two further goals in the second half in a tremendous performance for his club. Yes, yes, you say. It’s not hard to score goals in the Super Lig – but could he do it on a rainy night in Stoke? The truth is, he probably could have – but we didn’t really give him much of a chance.
Feghouli signed in June 2016. He made his West Ham debut on 28 July in a 2–1 away defeat to NK Domžale in the Third Qualifying Round of the Europa League, but failed to make an impact for the club, with the Algerian only making his first start in January 2017. In August 2017 Feghouli left to play for Turkish giants Galatasaray after having scored just four goals in all competitions in east London. It wasn’t really enough time in a good enough team to get the best from him.
After all, sometimes it takes players a while to settle into a new team, especially in a new league. Cast your minds back a wee while to when Brazilian star Felipe Anderson arrived; initially, he wasn’t actually very good – and yet we gave him time to get there, to settle in, to deliver, and now he’s doing just that.
The truth is, Sofiane’s most memorable moment in a West Ham shirt may just be when Manchester United’s clown-cum-professional-footballer Phil Jones attempted to murder the Albanian with a brutal challenge. As well as having his legs nearly ripped from his body, Feghouli was then sent-off for his troubles by the referee – the humble and lime-light shunning Mike Dean, no less. All this, just fifteen minutes after Feghouli’s first league start. It wasn’t a great moment for anyone involved.
Feghouli has since moved on, and while it’s a shame we didn’t get to see him thumping in the goals in a claret and blue shirt, it’s good to see Sofiane doing well – he deserves that. He’s a good, pacey, creative, and hardworking player – and scoring a hat-trick in any league is a great result for a player. After all, West Ham are a team who get done by Astra Giurgiu in the Europa League on every attempt and who got rinsed by lower league Wimbledon in the FA Cup, so we don’t really have a huge leg to stand on when it comes to deciding who is and who isn’t an easy team to score against.
Everyone’s had a hand in a goal for the Hammers this season (particularly Chicharito, if you ‘catch’ my drift), but we’re still missing a man to start nailing three and taking the match ball home – boosting our goal difference in the process. It so nearly could have been the man, the mystery – the Feghouli; but all power to him for making it work elsewhere.