Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Will Allardyce be eased out over contract negotiations?

Interesting to read that the Board have warned Allardyce to be realistic in his wage demands. Maybe, just maybe, Sullivan and Gold are hoping that the big headed dolt will walk off in a huff if they offer him a figure beneath his sense of self worth.

Sacking Allardyce would be a huge risk. If he were to walk away, leaving the coast clear for 'Arry's return, that might suit the Dildo Boys down to the ground.

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Bony to Boost Skeleton Squad

Sorry, had to be first with the headline. After Dem Bones Ba came and went in no time, reports suggest that we have added to the spine of the team for next season by signing goal machine Wilfried Bony from Vitesse Arnhem.

West Ham fans will be delighted if the reports prove to be true, but there is a huge difference between scoring goals in the Dutch league and the Premier League. Claims that he is the new Drogba are all very well, but until we see Premier League flesh on the bare bones of Eredivisie promise, we shouldn't get too carried away.

Where does this leave Carroll exactly? Looking for a new club probably!

Allardyce looking over shoulder as QPR's Redknapp is linked with West Ham return

Well talk about a rabbit out of the hat! With Allardyce still sweating on a new contract, some mischievous sods have suddenly mooted the possibility of 'Arry returning to lead us into the Olympic Stadium.

Allardyce will not like that! For as long as the rumours centred simply on his going, with no realistic alternatives being suggested, he probably felt relatively secure. But the return of 'Arry rings uncomfortably true.

Sure West Ham fans have mixed feelings about 'Arry - he has claimed to be a fan of Spurs as a child since his departure - but, at the end of the day, his record as a manager of West Ham was impressive and his record since departing has been even better.

Crucially, he plays the game the West Ham way. Put him in charge of the present squad and Joe Cole, Vaz Te, Reid, Noble, Diame, Tomkins, Potts and Jarvis would all blossom. You would back him to get the best out of Carlton, Collins and Spence too. That is eleven players, the core of a team and squad.

Some of the Bolton boys might not fit in. Redknapp praises Nolan on the box but has never tried to sign him. He managed Taylor, and once claimed he was good enough for England, but he offloaded him when Pompey were promoted, recognising his limitations as a Premiership player.  O'Brien would probably be retained as a utility defender. Jussi would be OK though; 'Arry has no objections to OAP keepers as he proved at Spurs.

O'Neil may find a home given Redknapp values a trier and Yossi would be welcomed back with open arms.

So, although replacing Allardyce brings with it huge risks - as Newcastle, Bolton and Blackburn have all discovered - Redknapp's pragmatism and imagination might just be able to polish the sow's ear into a silk purse. Give him £20m to spend and he might just produce a team capable of establishing itself in the Prem before pushing on following the move too the Olympic Stadium.

Redknapp probably has a release clause in his contract should QPR go down, and he would love the opportunity of returning as the saviour of the Academy. You can hear him now: "When I was here last we brought through Frank Lampard, Rio Ferdinand, Joe Cole, Michael Carrick, Jermaine Defoe and Glen Johnson, the core of the England team for a generation..."

'Arry was replaced by Roeder so his achievements are magnified by what followed, but there's no getting away from the fact that he saved us from what looked like near certain relegation, turned us into a half decent team, brought through youngsters early, played the West Ham way, and added star names like Di Canio and Kanoute. Sure, there were loads of duff signings along the way but we can forgive him those now over a distance of time.

Would I welcome Redknapp back? With open arms! In fact, I would go so far as to say that he is the only man I can think of who would successfully replace Allardyce.

And that's why Doctor Evil may now be starting to sweat on that new contract.

Saturday, 23 March 2013

West Ham 15 Tottenham Hotspurs 0 - Work that Daniel Levy!

Sorry it's been a bit quiet here over the past week, I've been torn between laughing and crying. Of course I am sad at the imminent demise of the Boleyn Stadium. Every West Ham fan will hold a fond memory of the stadium of Ron Greenwood and Bobby Moore, the stadium of Hurst and Peters, the stadium of Brooking, Bonds and Devonshire, the stadium of Il Duce Di Canio and, all too briefly, of Third Party Carlos Tevez.

But the world moves on as they say, and for all the sadness, you have to see the funny side of West Ham landing a 600m stadium, complete with the retractable seating necessary to convert it into a footballing venue, for the princely sum of £15m!

Levy squealed, Levy protested, Levy took court actions, Levy wound up the key in Barry Hearn's back, Levy probably prayed and tried to call in all sorts of personal favours, offering promissory notes in return, but where did it get him?

Yes Tottenham will be building a new, state of the art, stadium but at what cost? And where will it be situated?

Arsenal have stopped winning things since the switch to the Emirates and there has been a steady stream of big money sales ever since. Yes the stadium is fantastic, but the cost of build has been a millstone around the club's neck ever since.

And Tottenham now face the same problem into the future, building a White Elephant stadium in, of all places White Hart Lane! It's like opening a Michelin 5 star restaurant in a pig pen!

Meanwhile, West Ham stroll into a stadium served by an underground station that is a hub in a future integrated London transport network and the tax payer is funding the move for the club. It is obscenely hilarious!

And if you are a Middle Eastern billionaire looking for a football plaything, where might you choose to chuck away your money. It didn't matter that Manchester United had all the history when the Arabs went shopping, they liked the idea of the Commonwealth Stadium; and West Ham will now represent exactly the same sort of prospect, but with knobs on!

Down Levy, and beg mercy of the porn merchants!

Friday, 22 March 2013

Farewell To The Boleyn

August 23rd, 1969. The team read:


Who was on the bench? I can't remember.

The players wore numbers one to eleven. Warming up consisted of a few pot shots at goal. The pre match meal was probably pie and chips washed down with a pint of beer, real beer, not lager of course. For the players I mean. I ate fish and chips washed down by Tizer.

We paid in real money. I had a rosette and a bobble hat, a scarf knitted by my Mum that came down to my ankles and one of those rattles. I bought a West Ham badge on the way in and my Dad bought the programme, A5 size, claret and blue on the cover showing the club badge and the name of the opposition, West Bromwich Albion. Hurst scored.

We lost. 1-3.

So many memories since then, so much love, so much hurt, so much romance. So much water under the bridge.

We move on. I think it is called progress. But my thoughts today are for the Boleyn, for Ron Greewood, for Bobby Moore, for John Lyall, for Trevor Brooking...

Monday, 18 March 2013

Idiot Louts Shame West Ham Again

Time and again they shame our club and time and again the club fails to take decisive action. How many "fans" received life time bans after the Tottenham game? And how many will be told never to enter the ground again after this latest shameful episode?

I know somebody banned from the Boleyn and I have been to an away game with him. The tickets were numbered and only available through the club, but that didn't stop him buying me my ticket. And he is a regular at away matches, the club seemingly unconcerned.

It seems that the only way of triggering action is for draconian sanctions to be imposed. If points were to be deducted, perhaps the fans would self police and the club might pursue the culprits more actively.

I hate the idea that we could be relegated because of the morons who support our club, but if that is the answer, so be it. The club must accept responsibility and take more effective action or it must take the consequences.

Sunday, 17 March 2013

Still Not Safe!

Never mind events at Stamford Bridge, with Noble, Nolan and Cole all ruled out, today was always about damage limitation, and keeping the score to two meant that was achieved. Our goal difference is still decent and much better than Villa's, Wigan's, Norwich's, Reading's and QPR's. But complacent Hammers who keep insisting we can't go down should study the Premiership table tonight.

This was so nearly the perfect weekend, but late winners for Wigan and Villa, on top of Southampton's victory over Liverpool, mean that nobody is safe up to Stoke and Norwich - and we are beneath them!

It's going to be a nail biting end of the season still. Birmingham thought they were safe two seasons back, and look what happened to them. With Man Utd all but ordained as Champions, there promises to be some freak results involving the teams at the top, and if Wigan can stay focused in the league, I can see them escaping.

And if Wigan aren't going down, we must be in the mix as we are only three points above Villa.

Bloody Pardew and Newcastle. Had they held on for a draw, we could all have gone to bed happy despite the defeat at Chelsea. Instead, there's a few sleepless nights ahead I fear.

Stevenage 4 Sheffield United 0 - Sue West Ham!

Tevez hat trick!

Oh no, sorry, it was Dani Lopez!

Then sue Spain!

Or El Cid. Or Sid James at least.

Or Queen Isabella. Or Hatti Jaques.

Or Pablo Picasso. Or Neil Pickyourarsehole!

Or Salvado Dali. Or Gaudi or Gaudete, gaudete! Christus est natus
Ex Maria virgine. Gaudete!

Or de Cerventes or Hernan Contes or Jose Carreras - he must be good for four tenners!

Stevenage. I ask you!

Saturday, 16 March 2013

Di Canio Trying To Kill Off Allardyce Through Kindness

Interesting to listen to Il Duce Di Canio in his BBC interview rubbishing links with Reading and talking about his special relationship with West Ham and the club's fans.

IDDC identifies the Hammers as "the one club...the one English club" dearest to his heart - the correction was for the ears of the Lazio Ultras no doubt -  and then goes on to say how unfair any specualtion, linking him to the manager's job, is on Allardyce.

He says Doctor Evil has been doing a "good job" but adds that he has been going through "a difficult time" in recent weeks. If the interview isn't a "come and get me" call, I don't know what is; but was he speaking to West Ham's board or Reading's?

I'll tell you what, the last thing we need is IDDC in either the home or away dressing room when Reading come to the Boleyn! But the events on the toucline might be more interesting than the events out on the pitch as Allardyce might just swing for the gobby Italian!


Saturday, 9 March 2013

Allardyce Asks, "Show us your draws!"

With no West Ham game today, Allardyce will be praying for draws. QPR host Sunderland and will fancy three points; Reading host Villa and a win for either team would be bad news; and Norwich play Southampton - and a 1-1 result in that would suit us nicely too.

Reknapp reckons 37 points will be enough and I agree with him. One win and a draw shouldn't be beyond us, but we don't want to see any of the teams down at the bottom winning games!

Friday, 8 March 2013

Poor Tevez Can't Win!

It's just not fair. Poor Tevez has been arrested for driving whilst banned. What was the guy supposed to do, employ a driver and sit in the passenger seat? Sheffield United would have started a legal action claiming a Third Party Agreement!

Thursday, 7 March 2013

Richard Scudamore Triggers More Questions on Tevez Affair and Sporting Integrity

Now I have to be careful here. Watford Football Club don't take kindly to criticism and their lawyers are especially protective of  Mr Scott Duxbury if emails I have received are to be believed. However, Watford and West Ham fans might be interested in listening to an interview with Richard Scudamore and, I am sure, West Ham fans would love to hear a response.

According to Mr Scudamore, "What West Ham did and what actually happened was wrong and those players should not have been entered into the league on that basis. However, having said that, on the rules as drafted then, WE COULD HAVE EASILY WORKED WITH WEST HAM PROBABLY TO HAVE CRAFTED THOSE AGREEMENTS SO THAT THEY DID FIT WITHIN THE RULES…HAD THEY COME TO US UPFRONT AND DISCUSSED IT UPFRONT, WE COULD HAVE PROBABLY REGULARISED THOSE AGREEMENTS".

So the question arises, why didn't the club discuss it up front? Who advised the owners not to do so exactly? Now I may be wrong, but my memory tells me that Scott Duxbury was the club's legal adviser at the time and I am certain that he was at the club during the whole Tevez affair.

Mr Scudamore also says that the punishment meted out to West Ham was appropriate and questions the legitimacy of Shafting United's compensation claim. The question therefore arises as to why, exactly, the club  agreed to pay the Blunted Blades the huge compensation figure of, reportedly, £20m+.

In the interview Mr Scudamore also objects to Third Party Agreements because of the issue of "sporting integrity" clarifying this by saying that a player should be at a club "primarily as a playing asset" and not with a view of him being "moved on" for financial gain.

Now that is interesting given Watford's present policy. Fair enough if all these "loanees" sign permanently for the club, but if Vydra and co are sold on, and the profit goes back to Udinese, then is it possible that "sporting integrity", by Scudamore's definition, would not be upheld? Or am I being stupid for even thinking this a possibility? Probably.

Now I am sure that Mr Duxbury, for example, is able to answer these points to everybody's satisfaction. I am not in any way suggesting that he said or did anything dishonest personally, nor that the compensation paid to Sheffield United was designed to cover anything up. Nor am I suggesting that anybody acted incompetently, gave bad advice to the club, nor that this was later compounded by still more incompetence. Any such suggestion would unquestionably be absurd. There must be very valid reasons for the decisions taken.

However, in the interests of clarity, it would be wonderful to hear some sort of response to Mr Scudamore's comments. Based on what Mr Scudamore has said, every West Ham fan would, I am sure, like to hear why:

1) The club broke the rules in the first place.
2) Why there was not an honest admittance of rule breaking and an attempt to find the common ground that Mr Scudamore suggests could have been negotiated.
3) Why the compensation was agreed with Sheffield United.

Further, football fans up and down the land would probably like to hear a view on "sporting integrity" and the present arrangement between Watford and Udinese in the light of Mr Scudamore's definition.

As I have already said, I am sure this can all be explained to everybody's satisfaction, but idiots like myself would appreciate hearing that explanation because, quick frankly, we are bemused. Why, given what Mr Scudamore has said, did we ever get into the mess we got into at West Ham; and are Watford currently testing "sporting integrity" whilst exploiting, in Mr Holloway's words, "a loophole"?

You can hear Mr Scudamore's interview by following this link:


(With thanks to Stani!)

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Barry Hearn Making An Irritating Buzzing Noise Again!

Isn't it time somebody rolled up a newspaper and swatted him? Or better still, send one of those trucks round that suck waste out of septic tanks and train its vacuum pump into Hearn's office?

As a kid,  I used to love sucking bluebottles up the hoover, hearing them buzz up the metal pipe, banging against the sides before being suffocated inside the dust bag. Hearn could buzz about the Olympic Stadium all the way into the drum and then drown in the effluence inside the storage tank.

His latest gripe is that Orient weren't allowed to share the stadium! Like that would make any difference! If Orient were to share our ground, their fans might as well go the whole hog and support a proper team rather than a bunch of cockney rejects!

Just imagine Orient in the Olympic stadium! It would take fifteen minutes to retrieve the ball when it was kicked off the pitch as a call went out, "If there is a supporter inside the stadium, please make himself known to the one steward to help search for the ball."

Monday, 4 March 2013

Allardyce Does His Best To Depress West Ham Fans

Just when we were smiling, Allardyce came along and wrapped his size 11 sweaty socks round our faces. It seems the choice is simple: we get relegated and Allardyce goes; or we stay up and Allardyce stays.

So it's heads we lose, tails we lose.

The joy of supporting West Ham United!

Sunday, 3 March 2013

Why West Ham Fans Were Right To Boo Scott Parker

Poor Scotty was hurt and bemused. He couldn't understand why West Ham fans booed him last Monday night, claiming he didn't expect it and didn't deserve it. Well I beg to differ.

Long standing friends and enemies of this blog will know I was never a fan of Parker as a player and called his selection as Player of the Year, when we finished bottom of the table, a joke. I  maintained throughout his time at Upton Park that Parker was part of the problem, not part of the solution, and it was no great surprise when Allardyce shrugged off his departure, preparing the ground by moving Noble to the holding role even whilst Parker was in the team.

But you don't boo a former player based on his ability, you boo him when you feel he has betrayed you, and all those who Parker made look like mugs were justifiably aggrieved when he shipped up in a Spurs shirt expecting Tevez like adulation. No way Scotte!

Of course, turning out for Spurs is a wind up in itself, but what probably rankled most for West Ham fans was the way that Parker refused to contemplate any other team, backing Sullivan and Gold into a corner and forcing the club to accept a derisory offer of just £6m. Suddenly, belatedly, two and two added up to four, and West Ham fans understood that Parker had taken them for mugs all along.

The man who many were injudiciously terming a West Ham legend had tried to engineer a move 12 months before, but Levy didn't fancy him because of his age and salary demands, and wheeler dealer 'Arry got excited about a cut price Van der Vaart instead. So Scotty was left high and dry on transfer deadline day and was forced to hang around at Upton Park. But no matter, he negotiated an absurdly inflated contract by way of compensation, a contract that ensured a massive salary well into his footballing dotage.

And what did West Ham get in return? The sort of headless chicken performance that saw him give us a leg up with a penalty on Monday. The challenge was absurd: an off the ground lunge inside the penalty box right in front of the referee. And Scotty looked amazed when the penalty was given!

We were duly relegated with Scotty charging all over the pitch with his heart on his sleeve but no brain in his head. Until the climax of the season, when with the European Championships beckoning, Scotty pulled up lame and sat out crucial games, missing our narrow defeat at Manchester City in order to watch his future employers at Stamford Bridge, sat alongside Jamie Redknapp no less!

Amazingly, even then, West Ham fans defended him. In fact, they were still protesting his love for the club even as he defected to Spurs. Fools!

Well on Monday, the fools bit back and booed the man who had betrayed them more than Judas Defoe. The poison dwarf was never loved at the Boleyn, what hurt West Ham fans most about Parker was that they had put Scotty on a pedestal and he promptly pissed all over them from a great height.

I'm not a big fan of booing but in Parker's case, I fully understand where the fans were coming from. What did the club get in return for the huge wages paid to Parker? A narrow escape from relegation followed by the drop the following season. But Parker got his Player of the Year gong and his move to his father's beloved Spurs regardless. And he's surprised the West Ham fans now feel resentful? Like I always said, he's not the brainiest of footballers!

Saturday, 2 March 2013

Stoke 0 West Ham 1 - A Priceless Victory!

Make no mistake, this result was huge. Had we lost it, the anxiety would have been unbearable; had we drawn it, the tension would still have ratcheted up; but coming away with three points has pushed the relegation genie deeper down into the bottle; the cork is still a little loose, but with Reading and Southampton  both losing and Norwich getting thumped, we can all breath a little easier tonight.

To term the performance heroic would be over doing it, but Charlie Adam's brilliant volley against the bar apart, we never looked troubled at the back, despite Stoke fielding the tallest attacking quartet the Premiership has ever seen for the last 15 minutes: Crouch, Jerome, Kenwyne Jones and Shea - talk about land of the bleedin' giants! But Collins, Reid, O'Brien and Demel stood tall themselves and dealt comfortably with all the long balls pumped into them, no doubt thinking they were in an Allardyce training session! Bloody hell, we even kept a clean sheet with Pogatetz on the pitch!

The goal, as I said at half time, was superbly worked and finished by the replacements. Vaz Te ran at the defence - something he did all afternoon - and slipped in a brilliant reverse pass to the superbly positioned Collison, who placed his shot beautifully into the far corner. Collison could have scored again, but lost his footing, and set up Vaz Te, who really should have buried his chance but wanted one touch too many. Carroll missed an easy chance in the first 45 from a cross from Demel and Collins headed narrowly over too and Jarvis forced a good save from Bogovic when clean through on the angle in the second 45.

It wasn't a game for the purists but any football that was played, was played by ourselves. Those who criticise Allardyce for his long ball football really should watch Stoke when they are chasing a game. Yes we played it long at times, but for the most part we passed through midfield and hit the channels when we went long, rather than straight down the centre of the pitch which was the Stoke approach.

And so we climb back up to twelfth and, should Wigan and Villa both lose or draw, a decent buffer will again have been established. Yes QPR won, but they remain 13 points adrift of us. If they now survive at our expense, then Allardyce should be hung drawn and quartered at the end of the season!

Man of the match? Referee John Moss who refused to be intimidated by the crowd, Pulis and the moaning Stoke players. He correctly rejected penalty claims when O'Brien made a brilliant last ditch challenge on Jerome and also got it right when the ball was deflected back onto Demel's arm. I was expecting a Stoke penalty all afternoon so the referee deserves huge credit for his judgement and strength of character.

Player ratings: Jussi 6; Demel 7, Collins 8, Reid 8, O'Brien 7; O'Neil 6, Taylor 5, Cole 5, Diame 7, Jarvis 6, Carroll 7 Subs Vaz Te 8, Collison 7, Pogatetz 5

Half Time Stoke 0 West Ham 1 - Replacements Combine!

It hasn't been pretty but what football that has been played, has been played by ourselves. In the battle of the long ball merchants, Pulis has so far stayed true to type, whilst we have tried to play it through midfield much more.

First off, the goal, which was superb. Vav Te ran at defenders, pushing them back on the heels, and then slipped in a brilliant reverse pass to Collison, who did what he does best, finding space in the box Lampard style. His positioning was superb and his finishing even better, keeping his head as he controlled it and buried it in the far corner.

Of course, it was superb irony that saw Vaz Te and Collison combine for the goal as both were only on the pitch because of injuries to Allardyce's first choices. If anybody can explain why Taylor starts ahead of Collison, I would love to hear the explanation. Apart from the fact that Taylor is an ex Bolton man of course!

Defensively we have been very impressive so far, helped hugely by the absence of Matty Etherington. It's dangerous to suggest that his replacement has been pretty hopeless so far, so I'm not going to. He is just waiting for Demel to tire and for Pogatetz to come on no doubt!

Jarvis has been equally quiet as Kightly, Carroll missed a sitter from a delicious cross from Demel and Collins very nearly netted with a superb headed that narrowly went over the bar.

IF we can hold on it will be three huge points. But it is a big if as Stoke must improve second half.

Friday, 1 March 2013

Toxic Claret & Blue Waste Dumped In Portland

We tried to dump him in Doncaster but the local environment committee objected. There was talk of Leeds but that came to nothing. Wolves had a sniff but the pungent aroma of sulphur made them look elsewhere.

But God Bless America, despite all their toxic loans,  Freddie The Fly Tipper is MLS bound!