Former Premier League goalkeeper Paddy Kenny has labelled the criticism of West Ham’s Tomas Soucek from his national media ‘a joke’.

The Hammers ace represented the Czech Republic in their 4-0 drubbing at home to Portugal in the UEFA Nations League at the weekend.

Vladimir Coufal put in a solid display, ranking first for tackles and interceptions among his teammates, according to SofaScore, while ex-Iron Alex Kral outshone Soucek in the engine room, putting in a shift that saw him make more clearances and win more duels (5/5) than any other member of the side.

Journalist Paul Brown has said that Soucek hasn’t looked the same player this season and there have been calls for Flynn Downes to start for David Moyes.

Following the defeat to Portugal, Czech outlet Seznam Zpravy called the 6 ft 4 in ace ‘completely useless,’ which hasn’t sat well with Kenny. 

He told Football Insider: “For your own papers to call you useless is a disgrace.

“He’s not useless. Players have bad games. Everyone in the world has had a bad day at work, we are all human beings at the end of the day.

“I’m not having that for one minute, it’s a joke. Your own papers too. On West Ham, they faded away at the back of last season, it started then.

“Last year they should have bought a striker and things might have looked better. I think it’s a snowball effect.

“They haven’t been the West Ham we have seen of last year and it’s not just Soucek. A lot of the players haven’t improved.”

Indeed, Soucek isn’t the only player not performing at the London Stadium.

The club sit in the bottom three at the international break after five defeats from their first seven Premier League matches.

It’s a run that has led to increasing pressure on Moyes, with the east London outfit currently holding the division’s joint-worst attack.

With a 7.07 average SofaScore match rating, Soucek is West Ham’s second-best performer this term, behind Declan Rice, but he will be hoping to wave off recent criticism in order to ensure his side get a much-needed three points at home to Wolves on Saturday evening.