Friday, 30 September 2011

My Preview of the Eagles v Irons & Carlos Tevez

Now we are over the mid week defeat to Tractor Boys we must move on to beat the Eagles away on Saturday.

West Ham boast a 50% winning record in competitive meetings with Crystal Palace (13 of 26). Palace have won four, with nine drawn.

 The pair have not played each other since that awful day Palace's beat us 1-0 at the Millennium Stadium in May 2004, which gained them promotion to the Premier League and kept us in the championship for another season. :-(

West Ham have only been beaten twice in a league game on Crystal Palace turf in May 1995, and April 2004.

Six of the Eagles' 10 league goals have been scored in the last 12 minutes. West Ham defenders please note!
West Ham are still Unbeaten away from home, victory will equal the West ham's total of points on.

Disappointed to hear that Robert Green will be out for six weeks. Joey O'Brien, Winston Reid and Matty Taylor are also doubts through injury.

Goalkeeper Manuel Almunia on an initial one-month emergency loan from Arsenal and is cleared to play tomorrow. Marek Stech  is away on loan at Burnley and I am told if he plays one more game for West Ham it will trigger a £500,000 payment to his former club. Boffin let himself down at the  Aldershot game so was unlikely to be risked in the first team again so soon,

The big news was a cheeky big by David Gold for Carlos Tevez which the back page of the Sun

Just last year, the Sun reported Carlos Tevez said "I wish to play again for West Ham before I finish my career. I have some unfinished business there"

Well he just might get his chance. LOL!

Here is my team and prediction:


       Diop   Tomkins   Faye    McCartney

         Bentley Nolan Noble  Collison Lansbury      

                              Tevez ;-)

My prediction is a 1-0  Hard fought Away Win  Come On You Irons!

We will be recording Episode 7 of Moore Than Just A Podcast on Monday night where we will be discussing Ipswich, Palace, Nolan, Greeno and of course Tevez

You can still send in your ultimate West Ham XI to or go to our Facebook Page at

Here are some West Ham Songs from Tuesday Night

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Keep Calm and Carry On!

Lets all keep calm and carry on! It is not the end of the world!

We are still 4th in the league and still two points from the top. Southampton lost to Cardiff tonight and 2nd and 3rd placed Middlesbrough and Derby could only manage a point in their mid week games so the leaders didn't have a great mid week either.

It is still possible to go top on Saturday if we beat Palace away!

Yes, I was frustrated last night, Yes it was poor game and Yes Kevin Nolan played crap again.

But I am fully over it this evening and we need to focus on Saturday and our away form.

Sam needs to kick them up the bum and sort out the home form before Blackpool. He said as much in his email to fans today.

Well we finally got our 4-4-2 formation! bet we all wish we hadn't called for it now.

Green, Faye and Tomkins were the only ones I would single out for praise last night.

Cole and Carew were firing blanks. Although we saw a couple of moves by Baldock he looked knackered by the end of the match.

Noble had a 150th apperance to forget and we won't even start to describe Nolan's 350th professional appearance. That's professional with a small p.  Nolan looked like he couldn't be arsed to run around.

Bentley still lacked confidence and lost the ball several times and Lansbury was yellow carded early on and lucky to remain on the pitch after a second mis-timed tackle. Sam pulled him off quickly after that and brought Collison on.

I know there is element that teams are treating their match with West Ham at home like a cup final and the tractor boys clearly wanted it more than us.

Still can't believe we conceded in the 88th minute at home yet again!

Anyway An evening best forgotten!

Come on you Irons!

Monday, 26 September 2011

My Preview of the Irons v the Tractor Boys

Tuesday night we play the Tractor boys at teh Boleyn in which I am sure we a fantastic atomsphere.
West Ham have concerns over Joey O'Brien, Guy Demel (both hamstring), Tomkins (groin) and Matt Taylor (calf). Gary O'Neil is still recovering from an ankle injury and striker Frederic Piquionne is still suspended.

West Ham have beat Ipswich 27 times, lost 19 times from 66 competitive meetings with the  Tractor Boys.

Ipswich have not met since West Ham since we won 4-2 on aggregate in that amazing semi-finals of the Championship play-offs in May 2005. It took us to an unbeaten run over Ipswich to five games.

We have lost  two of  our last 14 home league meetings with the Tractor Boys, and just need to score twice to total 100 competitive goals against Ipswich.

In fourth place we are unbeaten in seven league games and have made our best start to a league season in 28 years.

We are the second highest scorers in the Championship, with 16 goals. Southampton have netted 20.

Mark Noble, who got the winner from the spot  and received Man of the Match against Peterborough on Saturday, is in line to make his 150th league appearance for us while Kevin Nolan could start his 350th regular league game. Lets hope he makes it a game to remember!

Ipswich have the worst defensive record in the Championship but have kept back-to-back clean sheets and are targeting three in a row for the first time in the league since March 2005.

My Team assuming injuries mentioned above:


       Diop    Reid   Faye    McCartney

         Bentley Nolan Noble Lansbury      

                     Carew Baldock
My prediction is a 3-1  Home Win 4 days  Come On You Irons!
For those of you not going the radio commentary is on BBC London Radio
However for £59 you can get a Pie and Pint the company of Ian Abrahams (The Moose) and Phil Parkes in the Legends lounge Tuesday night. Sounds a good deal if I didn't already have a ticket!
George, John and I are recording the sixth episode of Moore Than Just A Podcast at 8pm on Monday night so if you have any questions, topics or shout outs just tweet me at @WestHamfootball

Sunday, 25 September 2011

A Win is A Win is A Win

My Man of the Match Abdoulaye Faye

The match statistics speak volumes for yesterday's game. West Ham had 16 attempts on goal with 9 on them being on target. However the BBC match statistics also claim Peterborough had 11 attempts on goal with 5 of them being on target. I question this as Robert Green had a quiet afternoon relaxing in the autumn sun much of the match.

BBC claim West Ham had 54% of the possession with Posh on 46%, again I would disagree it seemed much more one sided  at the match and I thought we dominated possession.

West Ham had 9 corners to Posh's 3. West Ham committed 5 fouls (two of them by late sub Carew) while Posh managed 7. Lansbury picked up a late yellow card and former hammer and Posh skipper McCann also picked up a yellow.

Statistics aside it was a great atmosphere with nearly 30,000 fans watching the match, 2,500 being from Peterborough. This is amazing since their average home gate is the lowest in the league at 8,000. I met some Posh fans on the tube and got the impression this was their cup final day out and they expected to lose.

The Sir Trevor Brooking lower crowd were in good singing form and we started singing 'How Shit Must you be, we are winning at home' after Noble converted a penalty after 11 minutes.

The rest of the game was typical West Ham, a day of missed chances. We just couldn't finish. Cole, Bentley, Nolan, Lansbury all came close but the ball just wouldn't go in.

Nolan looked bright in the first few minutes but tailed off quickly and had another poor game.

Mark Noble had a great game after converting the penalty and played his socks off. Matty Taylor was better but not as good as he has been for us. Sam later claimed he had a slight calf injury.

The real story for me was defence Abdoulaye Faye was absolutely outstanding and the man of the match for me. The sponsors man of the match was given to Mark Noble but I am sure that was more to do with the people choosing wanting to meet Noble.  Faye won't be giving up his place any time soon and looks a tower of strength.

O'Brien was the weaker of the four for me but Sam said post match he had a tight hamstring. He also claimed Carlton Cole had a heavy cold and couldn't last the whole match. If he had a heavy cold then why did he start? Strange! I thought Cole was better than Carew (who didn't have a cold)

The STB Lower also had lots of banter with Sam Baldock. Sam seemed genuinely chuffed when the Sir Trevor Brooking stand continued to sing his name as he warmed up down the side lines. 

Anyway a win is a win is win! All 3 points and 4th in the league with 17 points is good for me.

If we are winning and averaging 2 points per game while not playing not well then that's got to be good in anyone's book and the sign of an automatic promotion team.

Imagine what we can do when we start playing well.

Ipswich on Tuesday which I am predicting as another home win then Palace away which I think we will also win.

I am looking forward to the evening game on Tuesday night, should be a great atmosphere!

Come on you Irons!

We will recording MooreThanJustAPodcast episode six tomorrow evening to expand on the Posh match and the forth coming games. 

Previous podcasts at 

Friday, 23 September 2011

My Preview of #WestHam v Posh

Posh Skipper Grant McCann in his West Ham Days
West Ham and Peterborough have only met twice and West Ham have won both matches.
 They competed in the old money Second Division together 19 years.
After winning 3-1 at London Road in September 1992, The irons edged a 2-1 victory at the Boleyn ground in February 1993.

More recently they met in a pre-season friendly in July 2010 where West Ham triumphed 2-1. Carlton Cole and Anthony Edgar scored our goals. It was Edgar first career goal and his last for West Ham. He was released by West Ham in June this year and now plays for League One Yeovil Town.

West Ham are unbeaten in six Championship games, and have 14 points  making it our best start to a league season in eight years.
We have picked up six more points on our travels than at home; ten on the road, four at home. Only Middlesbrough exceed that, with seven more on their travels.
We can also boast the biggest average gate in the Championship.

Peterborough are without a victory in six away league games having alternated between draw and defeat since a 2-0 win at Dagenham on 5 April.
Their manager and son of Alex Ferguson, Darren doing his best to survive on the lowest average attendances in the Championship.

Peterborough skipper Grant McCann recently admitted it was a silly decision to leave West Ham.

The former West Ham midfielder played just 72 minutes in four substitute appearances for the Irons before deciding his career lay elsewhere at the end of the 2001-02 campaign when he asked to leave.
The bookies fancy a West Ham win at 8/13 odds on favourite on Saturday and the home fans will expect it! You can get as much as 5/1 for a Peterborough win and 3/1 for a draw.
Big Sam continues to play 4-5-1 although he still insists it is 4-4-3. Nice try Sam but no banana!
He has hinted he may concede and play 4-4-2 and maybe this is the game to do early on.
With a potential 4-4-2 in mind and assuming Tomkins is not fit here is my starting team

                                       O'Brien    Reid       Faye      McCartney

                                       Bentley    Nolan    Lansbury  Taylor     

                                                          Cole Baldock
My prediction is a 3-0 Tidy Home Win  Come On You Iron


Saturday, 17 September 2011

West Ham Fire Blanks in Milwall Non Event

So the over hyped London Derby clash of the season turned out to be a non event both off and on the match. It sounds like the Met Police had the event well policed and there was no reported trouble before, during or after the match. I am sure we are all glad of that after the shameful scenes of August 2009. Although the West Ham/Millwall bitterness started as rivalry between ship buidling yards it seems more to do with kids that have watched the shocking film Green Street these days.

As normal for West Ham it was a day of missed chances. In the build up to the game announced no Nolan in the line up but two Nobles! I suggested we could sing 'Are you Noble in disguise?' to Nolan or "There is only two Mark Nobles, two Mark Nobles, there is only Two Mark Nobles" Actually another Mark Noble contacted me on twitter to say there was another Mark Noble but he wasn't very good at football. That's both of them then!

There was no surprises in the line up and formation with a 4-5-1. The only real change was Reid was dropped to make way for Faye which is something we called for in Monday's podcast. I am glad BFS is now a regular listener of Moore Than Just A Podcast and does what we suggest ;-)

Reid's dropping to the bench was not to last as Tomkins injured his groin and was replaced by Reid in the first half. A few of female West Ham followers offered to kiss it better which I am sure will get Tomkins fit in no time.

As the chances went I can only rely on BBC London radio commentary along side the Sky and text updates.

At kick off it appears that the Millwall goalie was off the pitch sorting out his net. The ref hadn't noticed this but Lansbury did. Lansbury took a half way punt at goal but it was off target.

It appears Lansbury had two more excellent chances at goal, the first was saved by the goal keeper and his second chance was either cleared off the line by the Millwall captain or hit the cross bar.

The biggest miss of the day went to David Bentley who missed an open goal from sixe yards! FFS!

To be fair Millwall defended well and sounded the better team in the first half. Greeno made some excellent saves and although both teams will be happy with the draw and the point, both teams will equally think they could have won it.

West Ham confirmed that the match will be the featured match on the BBC1 Football League Show at 11.50pm Saturday. Bet the BBC are regretting that now. I might change my views when I see it for myself.

Match Statistics:

10 Goal Attempts Each, 5 On Target Each

8 Corners To Millwall but Only 1 to West Ham

8 Fouls by Millwall and 5 by WestHam

Millwall picked up 1 Yellow Dunne Card and WestHam 2 Noble and Cole

Posession was Millwall 44% with 56% to West Ham

George, John, Reece and I will be giving our views of the game on Monday's podcast which will be Episode 5 of Moore Than Just A Podcast.

Any questions or topics for Episode 5 just leave a comment, tweet us or email us.

My Millwall v West Ham Preview

Medium Sam with Tash in Millwall Playing Days

It might be strange for Big Fast Sam to return to the club where he played 60 league appearances as a central defender for Millwall (1981-1982)  with that great tash. Bet he was a ladies man in those days ;-)

West Ham have won nine, lost six and drawn 10 of the 25 competitive matches against Millwall.

West Ham's second and most recent league victory on Millwall turf was 1-0 in December 1988 
Millwall have kept one clean sheet in the last 14 league matches with West Ham.
West Ham are unbeaten in five league games (13 points out of 15).
West Ham are looking to match the four successive away league wins attained between April and September 2007. They last achieved such a feat in the same season in December 1985, when a club record five straight away top-flight wins were registered.
I am sure BFS will continue to play 4-5-1 away. Lansbury is sure to get a start but it remains to be seen whether Bentley starts or comes off the bench as he did against Portsmouth.
My Team,  Greeno,   Linda, Tomkins, O'Brien, Faye   Taylor, Nolan, Lansbury, Bentley  Cole
Subs: Stech  Demel,  Faubert, Diop, Carew, Baldock
I think it will be a tight London derby but I will stick to my 3-0 win I predicted on episode 4 of Monday's podcast.

Come on you Irons.  

Friday, 16 September 2011

West Ham v Millwall Rivalry History

It is difficult to imagine two sets of football fans predisposed to go at each other with a more elemental fury than West Ham and Millwall.Most West Ham home games have at least one round of "If you hate Millwall, stand up." despite not playing them since on that infamous night in 2009.
West Ham and Millwall are not especially close geographically, and on opposite sides of the Thames. 

Surely if Millwall are to loathe anyone, they would be better off picking on Crystal Palace, their only South London adversaries of note?

But no, such are the quirks of English tribalism that Palace resort to an age-old feud with Brighton, while Millwall store up all their hostile energies for a trip across the river.

The feeling is mutual: West Ham fans regard Millwall's territory of south Bermondsey as a wasteland; Indian country, if you like. Seldom can Tower Bridge have formed so stark a demarcation.
The roots of such sentiment reside in events of 85 years ago, when an antipathy developed between two shipyards on either side of the Thames.
To the north you had the workforce of the Royal docks (drenched in the claret-and-blue of West Ham) and to the south, the Millwall, London and Surrey docks (Millwall 'til they died). When the Millwall shipyard broke the 1926 dockers' strike, the outrage over the water raised tensions to tipping point.
The significance of the strike, while often invoked, can be overstated. The decline of the docks, coupled with the divergence in league positions of West Ham and Millwall, meant that the two clubs hardly bothered one another in the Thirties and Forties.
Of more recent relevance was the glorification in London of gang warfare, between the Krays in the East End and the Richardsons in the south-east.
Lurid tales abounded of what Reggie Kray did with a carving knife, or what Charlie Richardson was capable of with a bolt cutter.
Inevitably, one offshoot of this was a Sixties culture of bragadoccio on the terraces of the Den and Upton Park, a competition to see who was the better fighter.
Fighting proved to be the order of the day. At the 1972 testimonial in honour of Harry Cripps - renowned Millwall hard man, with a name straight out of a crime novel - there were police horses on the pitch.
An even bleaker turn came in 1976, when Millwall fan Ian Pratt died in a skirmish with West Ham fans at New Cross station that led to his fall under a train.
Leaflets were later handed out in the Den's Cold Blow Lane end with a grainy picture of Pratt and a declaration in capital letters: "A West Ham fan must die next week to avenge him."
And yet to establish a historical rationale for this rivalry seems to confer a dignity upon it that it does not deserve.

Saturday, 10 September 2011

How shit must you be? We are winning at Home!

Well we finally nail that first home win in six months! However it took seven goals, seven yellow cards, three debutants, two red cards and two penalties. Surely there must be an easier way!

It was our first home win since March 2011.

It all started so well with great expectations from both players and crowd based on our away form and new signings from the transfer window. That was brought down to earth with a large bump very quickly.

Within the first 3 minutes Carlton Cole had conceded a free kick after fouling ex Hammer Hadden Mullins and new boy Henri Lansbury had conceded two free kicks to Pompey.

Pomey scored on 7 minutes. It looked like an own goal or deflection from Carlton Cole to me but it was credited to Luke Varney. I doubt Carlton while argue with that and what to claim it for himself.

One minute later Carlton Cole is fouled and we were rewarded with a free kick which Matty Taylor converts into superbly taken set piece. Again it seemed to take a slight deflection from a Pompey player before going in but it was given to Matty. So all square after 9 minutes.

We had to wait until the 53th minute and another deflection. This time Noble crosses towards Faubert and the ball drops to Lansbury 16 yards out. He drives it low and it flicks off Pearce and dribbles past the wrong-footed keeper.

It now we start singing 'We are winning at home, We are winning at home, How Shit must you be? We are winning at home'

This chant started in Sir Trevor Brooking Lower was not to last as 7 minutes later Pompey equalised yet again. Portsmouth break as Mark Noble is caught out. Huseklepp picks out Norris, who heads powerfully past Greeno at shirt range. Winston Reid tries to keep it out on the line, but his efforts are in vain. Two-all   back to square one!

Liam Lawrence is sent off after he fouls David Bentley. It was his second bookable offence after being booked in the first half for fouling our other debutant Henri Lansbury.

Just 3 minutes later referee penalises Jason Pearce for handball and Mark Noble converts to put us 3-2 up despite ex Hammer  Ben Haim trying to put Noble off taking the penalty.

We nervously start singing ' 'We are winning at home, We are winning at home, How Shit must you be? We are winning at home' for the second time.

Our nervousness turns to optimism when Carlton Cole scores from a backwards header just four minutes later.

We now sing 'We are winning at home, We are winning at home, How Shit must you be? We are winning at home' with confidence.

Surly not even West Ham can concede 2 goals in 15 minutes to a 10 men Pompey. 

5 minutes from normal time Piquionne replaces Cole and promptly gets sent off 9 minutes later in injury time when the ref says he raised his arm to Halford in the box.  Halford gets up and seems fine once Freddy is shown his red card.  One minute later Mark Noble clips ex hammer Tal Ben-Haim and a penalty is awarded to Pompey!

Why is it that referees believe they should even up games by players sending off for soft challenges and awarding soft penalties after there has been an earlier sending off and penalty for the opposition. Pompey convert their penalty and it ends up 4-3. Luckily the ref blows the final whistle straight afterwards or it could have ended 20-19 given enough time.

A win is a win but hardly a convincing home display. Some good spells by Lansbury who got man of the match, Bentley looks good, Noble worked hard, Matty Taylor and Carlton Cole also worth a mention. Nolan had a off game and the team didn't really gel together. The defence needs sorting out!

The mid field still looked crowded and the many fans that were hoping for a 4-4-2 formation and Sam Baldock were disappointed.

We still haven't addressed conceding a third goal in injury time in all 3 home games this season.

Still I am sure 75 year old Birthday Boy David left with a smile on his face

We will be recording Episode 4 of Moore Than Just a Podcast on Monday night talking about the game. Please leave a comment if you have a question for us or a topic we should cover on the next episode.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

My Preview of West Ham v Portsmouth

The last time we played Portsmouth at home Avram Grant managed Portsmouth and Gianfranco Zola was our manager. Now Mr Grant has managed to relegate both teams to the Championship and we are both rid of him.

It was Boxing day 2009 when West ham last hosted Portsmouth, a game which saw us win 2-0. Diamanti scored from the spot after a Mullins foul and Kovac headed home for the second.

The win on Boxing day moved us out of the bottom three in the premiership while Portsmouth sunk to rock bottom of the premiership league under Grant. Why does that sound familiar?

The Portsmouth side included Mullins, Ben-Haim and Piquionne.

The West Ham line up was Green, Upson, lunga, Tomkins, Parker, Kovac, Noble, Faubert, Collison, Franco and Diamanti. Stech, Spector, Da Costa, Jimenez, Behrami, Stanislas and Nouble warmed the subs bench.

10-Year Head-to-Head History  

January 26, 2010 Portsmouth West Ham  1-1

December 26, 2009 West Ham Portsmouth 2-0

December 26, 2008 Portsmouth West Ham 1-4

November 15, 2008 West Ham Portsmouth 0-0

April 08, 2008 West Ham Portsmouth 0-1

October 27, 2007 Portsmouth West Ham 0-0

December 26, 2006 West Ham Portsmouth 1-2

October 14, 2006 Portsmouth West Ham 2-0

March 18, 2006 West Ham Portsmouth 2-4

December 26, 2005 Portsmouth West Ham 1-1

Now 20 months after we last beat them at the Boleyn Piquionne warms our subs bench, Upson plays for Stoke, Parker for Spurs and Stansilas for Burnley.

After an unlucky loss against Cardiff on the first game of the season and an even more un-lucky draw against.

Following a tweet to my 8,500 twitter followers and discussing it on our latest Moore Than Just a Podcast episode most people seem keen for West Ham to go for the more attacking 4-4-2 formation at home and revert to 4-5-1 formation away from home.

A few people suggest leaving the formation and team the same as Nottingham Forrest but I am sure Big Sam will slowly introduce new players rather than massive changes.

Here is my team which seems a popular choice amongst others.


McCartney – Tomkins – Reid – O’Brien

Taylor – Noble– Nolan -- Lansbury -  

                       Cole Baldock

Bench: Boffin, Faye, Bentley ,Demel , Carew

My prediction is we will overcome Portsmouth and finally get that home win!

I will go for a 3-0 home win  COYI! Bring on the Pomey!