WHUFC vs Norwich City EPL 26/09/2015


It's all kicking off at Upton Park
It’s all kicking off at Upton Park

Yesterday we welcomed one of the new teams to the Premiership. I for one, was not sure of victory as we had had a tough game at Leicester during the week, which was lost  in extra time. This was born out by the WHU start which was leggy to say the best. Noble and Kouyate especially were out of sorts and just looked knackered. Just as well we are not still in Europe !

Noble summed this up just before the 10 minute mark, by directing a lazy pass across our goal looking for Tomkins. This was intercepted by Brady who coolly opened the scoring for the canaries.

West Ham huffed and puffed throughout the half. Just after the half hour mark we managed an equalizer when Payet and Sakho combined well to finish with a tap in to make it 1 – 1 at half time.

No subs at half time for WHU , which surprised me, as I wouldn’t have been amazed to see neither Noble, Koutaye, or Jenkinson come out for the second half.

The second half was very much more of the same in what was becoming a easy to forget game. Nathan Redmond came on near the end and I imagine thought he had scored the winner when once again Noble fell short to allow Redmond’s shot to find Adrian’s bottom corner.

Then WHU woke up, and we threw everything at them including Andy Carroll who got himself into a couple of good positions, which were well covered by Ruddy, who also made a great save from Payet. Ruddy’s luck ran out when he tried to punch out a Free kick with Carroll bearing down on him and got it as far as Kouyate, who finished well to secure a draw with seconds to go

So, a point at home keeps us in 3rd and 1 point closer to Man City, but Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham, are 2 points closer to us. Fairplay to Slaven, who had no problem taking off our Captain, as he was having a shocker, maybe a little earlier next time. He also finished with 2 up top, which is encouraging, but with Moses and Payet, you will always have some sort of forward presence.

The Norwich fans seem to be turning into some sort of Palace style “Ultra” support model, which is funny if nothing else.

MOTM was both goalkeepers who kept the goals with some great saves, especially Adrian with his face, which must of stung a bit. With all these saves you would think the game was a classic, it really wasn’t. It was a bit of an attritional game and the score was about right, although Norwich may feel they shaded it, but they did sacrifice the lead twice.

WHUFC vs Newcastle United EPL 14/09/2015


Hopes were high as The Hammers entertained their struggling opponents under the lights at the Boleyn. Newcastle were not having the best start of the season ever, but WHU were yet to register a point at home, whilst taking full points on the road at Arsenal and (historically) Liverpool.

Since that game at Anfield, some 4 players have joined WHU and one made his debut last night as Victor Moses came in for Obiang, and Tomkins found himself once more in the right back berth. Mark Noble also made his first appearance as officially the club captain, although with the fans he has held that position since Scott Parker left.

WHU started the game with a spring in their step, with Payet and Koutyate especially taking the game to the Geordies. The players seemed happy to close down, move around and make quick passes. Something we haven’t seen for a while. In the 9th minute a neat interchange between Noble and Sakho fed the ball to the edge of the box to Payet, and he shaped up perfectly to meet the ball in his stride to smash it into the top corner

As is usual for WHU the game started to drift and although we maintained the attacks, we were not really making the best of our chances. The Newcastle No.8 Vumon Anita was playing as a one man defence and was stopping everything and everyone coming his way. We continued as is now usual to half time, content to be ahead but not really pushing. But it must be said we were playing further up the pitch than normal and not buggering about passing it around the back.

It made a change not to go in 2-0 down at home, so happy days.

Once again we started the second half with the wind in our sails attacking the Bobby Moore. We cleared an early attack from Newcastle to Moses who ran the whole length of the pitch and got himself in on goal. He shoots, beats the keeper, but not the bar. The rebound comes straight out to Payet who volleys it in to make it 2-0. Big shout to the the team here, as Payet ran off on his own to celebrate, everyone else was congratulating Moses, who had his head in his hands ! From here on, Payet ran the show and gave us his full set of tricks and passes. This started to breed confidence within the team and soon everyone was at it. Against a better team we may of suffered , but Newcastle could not capitalise on the showboat circus. Even Mark Noble was taking people on and getting crosses in. There were back heels and fancy passes all over the place. The crowd were loving it, but occasionally you could see where the loss of the ball could reduce the deficit easily. The biggest cheer of the evening was reserved for the reintroduction of Andy Carroll (again), who nearly picked up a yellow card with his first touch (or non touch as it was on Tim Krull). His five minute cameo ended the night perfectly. The crowd were chanting “Are you watching Allardyce” for the last few minutes in between cheering on the back flicks and nutmegs.

2-0 to the Irons and 5th place in the league with Man City up next to hold on to our perfect away record this season (!). Why are we playing better? My theory is that now that we have a real squad, competition for places is driving players to play a higher standard of football. Lets hope this continues Messrs Bilic and Dicks

On a side note, Kevin Nolan was on Goals on Sunday this weekend and spoke glowingly of the club and his time there. With the stick people (myself included) have given him for the last 6 months, fair play to him, especially having his boy in a WHU kit. In parting, good luck to him in his future endeavours.

So in short, we have a top, top, quality flair player in midfield,backed up with some steel,  we can pass balls all over the shop without fear, we score some tremendous goals, we can defend and attack in numbers, we are all in it together, and are always on the edge of going too far and screwing it all up.

THE WEST HAM WAY IS BACK !!!!!

#COYI

MOTM: Payet, big shouts to Moses, Kouyate, Noble, and Tomkins.

Slaven Bilic's Claret and Blue Army !
Slaven Bilic’s Claret and Blue Army !
Is a straight line really that hard lads ?
Is a straight line really that hard lads ?

WHUFC vs AFC Bournemouth EPL 22/08/2015


Last season two of our most admired players were Aaron Cresswell and Carl Jenkinson . Aaron picked up Hammer of the year and Jenks was the first name on the shopping list for most fans following his successful season on loan.

Yesterday, they both had shockers and gifted all 4 goals to Bournemouth. First up was Cresswell slipping over to allow an easy cross and shot, followed by passing a ball straight into the path of Hat Trick Hero Callum Wilson to net his second.

Continue reading “WHUFC vs AFC Bournemouth EPL 22/08/2015”

WHUFC vs Leicester City EPL 15/08/2015


After last week’s great win against Arsenal our old friend expectation was unleashed at the Boleyn ground, as Leicester came into town to play the Hammers. However our opponents were on a high having won 4-2 against Sunderland on the opening day of the season.

WHU start young Reece Oxford again, in his place in front of the back four. This, as much as it hurts to say, was our undoing. WHU started well hitting the bar after 2 minutes from another great free kick from our buy of the season Payet. After the first 10 minutes of all out assault we reverted to a Sam style play from the back model, with Reid and Ogbonna swapping passes constantly and failing to come forward. Oxford was sort of caught up in this and it was noticeable that he was lost, and Leicester’s shape meant he had no one to mark either giving him no focus.

This led to him missing the pass from Vardy to Okazaki for the first, and also being caught out coming back when he should of been marking Mahrez for the second. However I wont lay everything at his young door, as our midfield should be been keener in supporting the front 2 and maybe keeping the ball up the other end.

So we go in at half time 2 down and it was time for Bilic to earn his money. He obviously said something because WHU came out flying in the second half, and within 10 minutes Payet had reduced the deficit to 1 after taking a great chance at the second opportunity. We continued to attack and a draw was on the cards but Leicester knew this and started to slow the game down. Near the end Sakho had a great chance in front of goal, which was stopped by the diving body of Schmeichel .

We are now into time added on and WHU apply more pressure, THEN, Adrian comes up for a corner. As the ball is cleared Adrian sees his chance for an overhead kick back into the box. Without taking stock of his surroundings he goes for it. And boots a Leicester player straight in the chest and gets a straight red. This is a problem. We will now have Darren Randolph in the sticks for the next 3 games.

This is the real West Ham way, just when you think it’s going well, we literally kick ourselves down.

MOTM for WHU Payet. Great goal, and great all round effort. Special shout out to Mahrez for Leicester who also looks a quality player.