December 4, 2019 / 5:02 AM / 7 days ago

Martin to continue as West Ham keeper as Fabianski nears return

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Premier League - Chelsea v West Ham United - Stamford Bridge, London, Britain - November 30, 2019 West Ham United's David Martin in action Action Images via Reuters/John Sibley

(Reuters) - West Ham United manager Manuel Pellegrini says third-choice goalkeeper David Martin will retain his spot in the starting lineup against Wolverhampton Wanderers on Wednesday after his impressive Premier League debut against Chelsea.

Martin kept a clean sheet in West Ham’s 1-0 win at Stamford Bridge on Saturday, which marked the club’s first league win since September, after Pellegrini dropped Spanish keeper Roberto Jimenez.

“Of course, it was a difficult decision because the goalkeeper is a special position,” Pellegrini said.

“I think, in some moments, the team needs a reaction and, unfortunately for Roberto, he was not doing well. Martin did well but I think the performance was not down just to one player.”

West Ham have struggled in the absence of first-choice goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski, who has been sidelined since September with a hip injury.

“Probably he will be ready at the end of the month, but I think that we must be careful with his return and not try to bring him back before he’s absolutely ready,” Pellegrini said.

Reporting by Silvia Recchimuzzi in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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