Barclays Premier League
Referee: Steve Tanner
West Ham United: Green, Pantsil, Neill, Tomkins, McCartney, Faubert (Solano
78), Parker, Noble, Ljungberg (Boa Morte 90), Sears (Cole 74), Zamora
Subs not used: Walker, Mullins
Derby County: Carroll, Mears, Stubbs, Todd (McEveley 82), Leacock, Jones
(Villa 75), Ghaly, Savage, Lewis, Sterjovski, Miller
Subs not used: Price, Moore, Feilhaber
Team news: James Tomkins and Freddie Sears get their first full starts at
home, with Lucas Neill returning at centre-back after a twisted ankle.
Matthew Upson and Jonathan Spector are both out, with the latter taking a
knock to his hip at Bolton. In midfield, Julien Faubert, Mark Noble and
Freddie Ljungberg all return to the starting lineup. Dean Ashton is also
absent with tonsillitis.
Tomkins and Cole cheer Curbs - WHUFC
Alan Curbishley was happy to see his players step up after seven changes for
the win against Derby
Alan Curbishley singled James Tomkins and Carlton Cole out for special
praise after Saturday's 2-1 home victory against already relegated Derby
County moved the side closer to confirming a top-ten finish.
The hosts always had the edge but it was not a straightforward success
against a determined Derby that had run Everton and Middlesbrough close on
their last two awaydays. Curbishley was aware though of the justified
"expectation levels" to get a result against a team with just eleven points
and only one win all campaign. Job done, United find themselves five points
clear of Tottenham Hotspur in eleventh.
Curbishley said: "As Derby have shown all year apart from a couple of
occasions, they have competed. Their last two away games were at Everton and
Middlesbrough where they got beat 1-0. [At home] they drew 2-2 with Fulham
and the [6-0] tonking against Aston Villa was there for everybody to see but
they have been playing with a little bit more freedom [away] and it isn't
easy. We are delighted to get the result. We have had tremendous problems
this week as everybody could see so we are pleased with the result."
The 18-year-old defender Tomkins came in for his first start at the Boleyn
Ground and impressed alongside Lucas Neill, who was back from injury and
also playing at centre-back for the club for the first time this campaign.
John Pantsil also got a rare start at right-back in a revamped back four.
Further forward, there were three changes in midfield while substitute
Carlton Cole came on to hit the decisive goal. The manager admitted he was
"disappointed" that a section of the support criticised his decision to take
off Freddie Sears, on his full debut, for the eventual match-winner.
"I know what happens here," the manager said when asked about the reaction
that greeted the 74th-minute departure of the 18-year-old prospect for Cole,
who also produced some important defensive work late on. "You put the
results together and it turns the other way. When the team's winning,
[visiting teams] don't like coming here because of the backing we get and
when they are not happy they let you know but surely there has got to be
some realism and appreciation of what has happened to us this year - week
in, week out we have been under the cosh."
Curbishley made no excuses for the poor display at Bolton Wanderers last
week but had praise for the commitment his men showed this time around. "I
have been very appreciative and complimentary to the players all season
because we have had loads of problems ... The players have been going out -
apart from last week and a couple of occasions - and done the job as well as
they could. I have got no complaints but if it is not good enough for some
people, then we have just got to get on with it ... Perhaps the appreciation
isn't there but it is up to us to turn it around."
The manager saw Jonathan Spector and Matthew Upson ruled out late in the
week while Dean Ashton was unable to get over his tonsillitis. Focusing on
the positives, Curbishley said: "It did give me the opportunity to give the
two young boys a game, which I am delighted with. I was just a little bit
concerned about Tomkins because he was cramping up. I was waiting to delay
the subs as long as I could but I just felt we needed a bit more up front
and I am pleased that Coley got the goal.
"Tomkins had an excellent game. He came in [last month in the 1-1 draw] at
Everton and got caught for the goal. I thought he got stronger as the game
went on today. I was really pleased with him and the fact that this group of
players have stood up to be counted most weeks and got us where we are when
we have had unbelievable problems just getting out there sometimes."
JJ on song at Cambridge - WHUFC
Homegrown talent Jack Jeffery had a good weekend with Cambridge United as he
scored one and made one
Jack Jeffery was the star of the show for Cambridge United as they got their
bid for promotion to the Football League back on track on Saturday.
The 19-year-old Academy product, who has been on loan with Jimmy Quinn's
side since mid-February, scored the opening goal on the half-hour mark with
a lovely turn and shot before making the second for Mark Beesley just before
half-time. It was his fourth start for the Abbey Stadium outfit. Salisbury,
who played with ten men for 75 minutes of the contest after Mike Fowler's
sending off, were no match for the visitors, who now need just one more win
from the last two games to confirm a spot in the four-team Conference
"I told Jack before the game I had a feeling he was going to score today,"
said Quinn, the former West Ham United striker. "I am delighted for him.
He's worked very hard since he's been here and that will do his confidence
the world of good." Two other United loanees were in Championship action on
Saturday. Goalkeeper Richard Wright was unable to help Southampton avoid a
1-0 home defeat by Burnley and they sit just one point outside the drop
zone, while Zavon Hines got the last three minutes as Coventry City moved
three points clear with a 5-1 triumph at Colchester United.
Cole winner denies Derby - WHUFC
Carlton Cole came off the bench to earn all three points after Bobby Zamora
had scored the first
West Ham United 2-1 Derby County
The relegated Rams put up a spirited fight at the Boleyn Ground but it was
just not enough to prevent Alan Curbishley's troops from getting back to
Following a hat-trick of defeats, substitute Carlton Cole's sixth goal of
the season sealed a second-half victory after an equaliser from former West
Ham United defender Tyrone Mears had wiped out Bobby Zamora's first strike
of the campaign.
Curbisholey had made seven changes the loss at Bolton Wanderers last
Saturday as John Pantsil, James Tomkins, Freddie Sears and the fit-again
quartet of Lucas Neill, Mark Noble, Freddie Ljungberg and Julien Faubert
returned in place of Jack Collison, Dean Ashton (tonsillitis) and injured
trio of Jonathan Spector, Matthew Upson and Anton Ferdinand plus substitutes
Luis Boa Morte and Hayden Mullins.
Last weekend, former Boleyn Ground keeper Roy Carroll had picked the ball
out of the net half-a-dozen times, as Aston Villa dished out six of the best
to doomed Derby County. Indeed, visitors Villa had gone one better than
Curbishley's side, who had won 5-0 at Pride Park back in November, as they
rattled up their biggest away victory since beating Manchester City in 1962.
Despite that six-goal grilling, Paul Jewell made just two changes as Dean
Leacock and Mile Sterjovski came in for substitutes Darren Moore and Emanuel
Miller. Safe in the knowledge that the Derby defence had already conceded 74
times in the Premier League this season, the claret and blue fans amongst
the nearly full Boleyn Ground crowd of 34,612 arrived looking for
Curbishley's men to make further dents into the visitors minus 58 goal
Indeed, one of last weekend's survivors, George McCartney, almost celebrated
his 50th consecutive start for the club with an early strike but his low,
fourth-minute, 15-yarder was blocked. As West Ham continued to seize the
early initiative, another old boy, Mears, was forced to send a desperate
diving header behind, a split-second ahead of the in-rushing Noble, before
Scott Parker deposited a 25-yard shot high into the Centenary Stand and
Tomkins nodded over, too.
On 20 minutes, however, the deadlock was broken when the unmarked Zamora met
McCartney's right-wing free-kick with a downward, six-yard header that gave
former team-mate Carroll no chance. In reply, Mears' dangerous byline
cutback was cleared, before top-scorer Kenny Miller hooked over and Robbie
Savage went close with a near-post header but, in truth, United, who also
saw Faubert let fly from 25 yards, were well worth their interval lead.
Certainly, Jewell's half-time team-talk looked to have inspired his troops,
who emerged looking far more resilient for the restart. Although the
ever-willing Sears - making his first full start - fired across the face of
goal and then Parker sent a low 18-yarder crashing into the boards, the
resilient Rams began to battle back and, on the hour, the alert Robert Green
was forced to race from out and bravely pluck the ball off the marauding
Unfortunately, West Ham failed to take heed of that warning and, just four
minutes later, Derby drew level when Hossam Ghaly broke upfield from a
corner and released Mears, who having got the better of Ljungberg, made no
mistake second time around as he blasted a 15-yarder beyond the exposed
Green. That galvanised Curbishley's men into action as Noble met Pantsil's
cross with a diving header that the well-placed Carroll clutched, before
Sears sent Ljungberg sprinting away but the flying winger tumbled under the
challenge of the unpunished Savage.
After Zamora scuffed to the Derby 'keeper, Cole came on for the tiring
Sears, who departed to a rapturous 73rd-minute reception. Within three
minutes of his arrival, the West Ham United substitute generated another
round of Boleyn Ground cheers, when he hammered in the winner from
Ljungberg's byline cutback, after the Swede played an incisive one-two with
Green grateful for charity support - WHUFC
Robert Green has thanked those who have backed his fundraising efforts and
there is still time to get involved
West Ham United goalkeeper Robert Green has been delighted with the response
to his fundraising efforts as he prepares to climb Mount Kilimanjaro this
"I would really like to thank everyone who has sponsored me so far and all
those have donated money to the bucket collectors at our last home game
against Portsmouth," he said. "It's fantastic to have so much support and it
will go a long way to changing people's lives for the better."
As well as making a donation, there are many other ways to support the West
Ham United and England shot-stopper. These include a goalkeeping golf day,
the GK Open, alongside a number of famous keepers, on 7 May and the Boleyn
Cup, a fundraising football tournament, being held at the stadium on 12 May.
West Ham 2-1 Derby - BBC
By Chris Whyatt
Relegated Derby are still without a win under manager Paul Jewell as West
Ham luckily found victory at Upton Park. A weak Dean Leacock challenge
allowed Hammers striker Bobby Zamora to nod home on 25 minutes but Derby,
showing rare creative intent, hit back. Tyrone Mears powered a fine
equaliser over Robert Green on 65 minutes and the Rams were looking likely
winners. But substitute Carlton Cole cushioned in a close-range volley 10
minutes later to leave the visitors desolate. With just one win all
campaign, morale-sapped Derby face the prospect of becoming the first club
in English league football for 109 years with such a low total of victories.
West Ham have faded of late and, with next season in mind, manager Alan
Curbishley made seven changes, handing 18-year-old striker Freddie Sears and
James Tomkins, 19, their first Premier League starts. Rams midfielder David
Jones took a ball flush in the face to cause a delay and limp-footed West
Ham keeper Green nearly allowed the ball to creep into his own goal before
hoofing clear. But the home side slowly worked their way into it, with Sears
a lively focal point in attack. When the goal came it was depressingly
simple from a Derby perspective, with George McCartney floating over a
free-kick for Zamora to head home with little resistance from challenging
defender Leacock. Such was Jewell's anger with Leacock he sent substitute
Darren Moore out to warm up immediately, though he resisted making a change
after an incident which summed up Derby's woeful season.
A flash of excellent link-up play from Jones and Mile Sterjovski let Mears
in down the right and after Jones's deflected shot, Kenny Miller hooked just
over the bar from the resulting corner. Captain Robbie Savage then went
close with a flying header which Green did well to tip over the bar just
The Rams came quickly out of the blocks after the break with Jones flashing
a wicked low cross across the six-yard box which Sterjovski and Miller just
failed to connect with. Derby continued to look creative in possession with
Miller impressive and Savage, roundly booed throughout, in the thick of the
action. With West Ham on the back foot, Sterjovski played Mears in on 65
minutes and Green had to be alert to smother at the Derby man's feet as he
charged in on goal. But Derby made the breakthrough they deserved minutes
later, catching West Ham on the counter attack. Hossam Ghaly sent Mears
through again and lifted a powerful finish over Green from 18 yards. With
the game now alive and both sides playing open football, Derby looked the
most likely to get another goal. But Curbishley brought Sears off for Cole,
who converted Freddie Ljungberg's cross from six yards out after the Swede's
slick exchange of passes with Mark Noble had carved Derby open down the
left. Savage headed over from a decent chance in stoppage time and Derby now
need five points from their remaining three matches to ensure their season
is not the most unsuccessful Premier League campaign ever.
West Ham manager Alan Curbishley: "After losing our last three games it was
important that we bounced back. There is a great lack of appreciation of
what we have done this season. "We have managed to keep away from the danger
area. On Friday morning we were scratching our heads to see how we would put
a team together. "The players have done really well and looking back this
has been a successful season."
Derby boss Paul Jewell: "The fans have been unbelieveable and that's why we
were desperate to reward them today. "They have been there all season and
they deserve to be in the Premier League. "We hope to take them back there
West Ham: Green, Pantsil, Tomkins, Neill, McCartney, Faubert (Solano 78),
Noble, Parker, Ljungberg (Boa Morte 90), Sears (Cole 74), Zamora.
Subs Not Used: Walker, Mullins.
Booked: Noble, Parker.
Goals: Zamora 20, Cole 77.
Derby: Carroll, Todd (McEveley 83), Leacock, Stubbs, Lewis, Mears, Ghaly,
Savage, Jones (Villa 75), Sterjovski, Miller.
Subs Not Used: Price, Feilhaber, Moore.
Goals: Mears 65.
Ref: Steve Tanner (Somerset).
BBC Sport Player Rater man of the match: West Ham's Freddie Sears 8.33 (on
West Ham United 2 Derby County 1 - KUMB
Filed: Saturday, 19th April 2008
By: Staff Writer
A late Carlton Cole winner was enough to earn all three points against Derby
County at the Boleyn Ground this afternoon. Substitute Cole had been on the
field for less than three minutes when he struck 13 minutes from time to end
United's run of four games without a win. However so unconvincing was the
victory that a minority of fans still booed the team off at the final
whistle - a clear indication of the dissatisfaction currently felt with
manager Alan Curbishley and his tactics. Some 20 minutes earlier those same
fans had been chanting 'you don't know what you're doing' at Curbishley
after he had decided to replace the ineffectual Freddie Sears with eventual
match-winner Cole. Yet it was the manager who had the last laugh as Cole
scored the winning goal just three minutes after entering the fray -
although that was clearly not good enough for some disappointed with the
standard of football served up on the day.
The Hammers - who had started the game with the local trio of Tomkins, Noble
and Sears for the first time - completely dominated the opening 20 minutes
of the game and deservedly took the lead when Bobby Zamora nodded home a
Lucas Neill free kick from close range. But bar the goal chances for either
side were few and far between ahead of the break - although the Hammers
continued to dominate and look the most threatening. Meanwhile Derby had to
wait until the 38th minute before seriously threatening Rob Green's goal
with a Robbie Savage header that was tipped over by the England keeper. The
second half was a far different story and it was the visitors who controlled
the game for long periods - much to the chagrin of an incresingly-impatient
home crowd. Having failed to make the most of their superiority United were
always vulnerable and they paid the ultimate price on 65 minutes when former
Hammer Tye Mears struck a deserved equaliser for the visitors. Having
escaped being hit on the counter-attack moments earlier thanks to Rob
Green's alert goalkeeping there were no excuses for the Hammers as Mears
raced through - again - to lift the ball over Green with not a single
defender in sight.
The goal served to wake the Hammers from their second-half slumber and Mark
Noble should have restored the lead when he could only head straight at
another former Hammer, Roy Carroll, in the Derby goal from six yards having
stolen a march on his marker.
Moments later Freddie Ljungberg was convinced that he was pulled down by
Robbie Savage having raced clean through with only Carroll to beat although
his please were ignored by the referee. Then, Bobby Zamora spurned a good
chance from close range after a low cross by George McCartney. Despite the
pressure Alan Curbishley decided to ring the changes on 74 minutes by
introducing Carlton Cole in place of young Freddie Sears who, in truth, had
never got into the game. And Curbishley showed that, despite claims to the
contrary, he knew exactly what he was doing when Cole popped up in the six
yard box to convert a low cross from Freddie Ljungberg which had followed an
exquisite one two between the Swede and Mark Noble on the edge of the box.
The Hammers briefly threatened to put the game beyond Derby through opening
goalscorer Zamora but he was twice denied by Carroll. However it was the
Rams who ended the game looking the most likely to score and Robbie Savage
should have grabbed a 92nd minute equaliser when gifted a free header on
goal which he could only nod tamely over. The final chance of the game fell
to Kenny Miller but his snapshot from 12 yards was fired straight at a
grateful Rob Green, who had been kept busier than he may have perhaps
expected at the half-time interval. The win keeps the Hammers in tenth place
and a further two points away from Tottenham, who could only draw 1-1 at
Wigan. Looking ahead, Blackburn - who are currently in action against
Manchester United - are four points away with tonight's game in hand.
West Ham United: Green, Pantsil, Neill, Tomkins, McCartney, Faubert,
Parker, Noble, Ljungberg, Sears, Zamora.
Subs: Walker, Mullins, Solano, Boa Morte, Cole.
Derby County: Carroll, Mears, Stubbs, Todd, Leacock, Jones, Ghaly, Savage,
Lewis, Sterjovski, Miller.
Subs: Price, McEveley, Moore, Feilhaber, Villa.
Curbishley welcomes intervention - KUMB
Filed: Friday, 18th April 2008
By: Staff Writer
Alan Curbishley has been talking about the impending changes to his medical
team. Curbishley - who signed several of his former Charlton colleagues last
year to effectively replace his predecessor Alan Pardew's 'sports science'
team - admitted that assistance from the team of Roehampton University
experts had been welcomed. "Roehampton work with elite athletes and go
across the board from diets up to rehab and training," said Curbishley,
talking ahead of this weekend's visit of Derby County. "We're going to take
all the advice possible because we've got to do better."
Despite sanctioning the visit of the Roehampton team, Curbishley denied
claims that his existing medical team were 'under-performing'. "I think that
on most of the injuries we've been unlucky," he added. "I can't forsee
Faubert rupturing his achilles, I can't forsee Dyer breaking his leg or
Collins his cruciate.
"But perhaps we've got to look at one or two of the other ones and see if we
can improve. That's what we're doing it for." As revealed earlier in the
week during the fans' forum, the Roehampton team have been charged with
completely overhauling the club's medical set-up.
Curbishley calls for realism - SSN
Boss pleased with performance
By Steve Pass Last updated: 19th April 2008
Alan Curbishley called for the West Ham fans to be realistic after the
Hammers beat Derby 2-1 at Upton Park on Saturday. The Hammers took a
deserved lead in the 20th minute when Bobby Zamora headed home a George
McCartney free-kick. The Rams then came out a different team in the second
period and dominated play before Tyrone Mears netted a deserved equaliser on
65 minutes But substitute Carlton Cole scored the winner when he tapped in a
Freddie Ljungberg cross on 77 minutes. The victory came after three defeats
in a row but there was still disquiet at Upton Park. But Curbishley said:
"Because of Derby's position the expectation levels is that they should be
rolled over by quite a few goals but you care to look at it and Derby, apart
from a couple of occasions, have held their own and have been beat by the
odd goal and in their last two away games to Everton and Middlesbrough
they've got beat one-nil, they've put up a bit of a fight, as they have done
He added: "We knew the pressure was on us and I think the pressure mounted
this week when we started to lose players on a consistent basis again and
left us yesterday morning scratching our heads 'how we going put a team
out?'" He added the club had six centre-halves out after losing Matthew
Upson and Jonathan Spector this week and Anton Ferdinand last weekend. "Not
many clubs could cope with that injury list. Add that to the others, there
are three players returning from injury - Faubert, Noble and Ljungberg -
really returning from injury without doing too much training so I knew it
was going to be a tough game for us, not just the football but I just felt
perhaps we might come under pressure physically as well."
He added: "I don't think there has been too much appreciation of what we've
actually achieved. I think this season we have had massive problems week in,
week out. It started after the second week of pre-season when we lost Parker
and Faubert, ventured into the start of the season we lost Bellamy and Dyer
and then it's gone on and on and on. "I've only given the players praise
except for last week I think they let themselves down last week at Bolton
but I've been praising them because they've done fantastically well. "But at
this moment of time there's not too much appreciation of what they have
done." He added when the Upton Park crowd are not happy they let you know
but that both him and the team will just have got to get on with it, sink or
swim. "They find themselves the West Ham fans at the moment in a top ten
position - look at the back of the programme and see all the problems we've
had and perhaps a little bit of realism will come into it. "These players
have done fantastically well, a great result for us today, badly needed
three points after our recent run and we have just got to keep going."
Describing the season, he added: "If there is a word I could perhaps use for
what's happened at West Ham and for me this year it's frustration. It has
been a frustrating time."
Curbishley then said a finish in the top ten would be a great result for the
club, although he knows the fans are not happy. "But I did say a couple of
months ago, West Ham over the years since they've been in the top flight,
their average league position has been 13th. They have not set the world
alight. "And I am hoping to build on something, I am hoping firstly after
getting out of trouble last year to have a decent season this year. I have
been frustrated by all the injuries - if I can get them fit I am sure we
have got a strong enough squad to do a lot better next year."
Derby and moan club - SSN
Individual errors to blame for latest Derby demise, says Walsh
Last updated: 19th April 2008
Paul Walsh watched Derby shoot themselves in the foot again as they slumped
to another defeat, this time at West Ham. Goals from Bobby Zamora and
Carlton Cole condemned Paul Jewell's basement boys to their 25th defeat in
35 Premier League games. And although Tyrone Mears grabbed only their 17th
goal of the season in between and the manager was actually pleased with
their performance, Walsh was less complimentary, blaming the latest defeat
on individual errors alone. "When the first goal went in I was looking at
Dean Leacock and his role from the set piece," he told Soccer Saturday. "It
was a left-footer in from George McCartney, I think, and Bobby Zamora gets
away from him too easily - and that will be the disappointing thing for Paul
Jewell. "He'll look at those individual situations where you need someone to
be a bit stronger and see his job out. But Zamora got his head on it and
then, somehow Roy Carroll was out of position it seemed to me, and the ball
went down into the corner and it was 1-0. "The for the second goal, Freddie
Ljungberg just played a simple ball into (Mark) Noble and then makes a run
in behind Andy Todd and Todd just looks at the ball. It's played in behind
him, Ljungberg slides it across and Cole just gets there. "I think when Paul
Jewell looks at those things, he'll find them unacceptable and see them as
the things he's got to sort out for next season. "Todd is an experienced
player, he shouldn't be switching off, he should be able to keep an eye on
Ljungberg and the ball. But he didn't do it, Leacock didn't do his job and
individual mistakes let them down."
Unconvincing Hammers beat Rams - SSN
Late Cole goal seals victory
By Steve Pass Last updated: 19th April 2008
West Ham beat Derby 2-1 in an unconvincing performance at Upton Park on
Saturday. They deservedly took the lead in the 20th minute when Bobby Zamora
headed home a George McCartney free-kick after poor defending by Dean
Leacock. But the Rams came out a different team in the second period and
dominated play before Tyrone Mears netted a deserved equaliser on 65 minutes
with a splendid finish past Robert Green. But the Hammers restored their
lead 12 minutes later when substitute Carlton Cole tapped in a Freddie
Ljungberg cross after the Swede played a one-two with Mark Noble. West Ham
had the first real effort of the game when a 25-yard free-kick from Noble
was hit straight at Roy Carroll in the ninth minute. Midfielder Scott Parker
tried his luck with a 20-yard effort in the 12th minute but his effort was
both high and wide. The Hammers went ahead when Derby defender Alan Stubbs
was penalised for a foul on the edge of the penalty area. McCartney sent the
free-kick into the six-yard box and Zamora outjumped Dean Leacock to head
beyond the stranded Carroll. West Ham's young striker, Freddie Sears, making
his first start for the club, continued to give Leacock a difficult time
with several clever runs into the penalty area. West Ham should have done
better when Sears and Ljungberg combined neatly in the 33rd minute but the
Swede's final ball to the youngster was far from the quality expected. Derby
had a scare moments later when veteran defender Stubbs required lengthy
treatment on a leg injury before being allowed to carry on. In the 37th
minute, Zamora had a second goal ruled out for offside after the West Ham
striker had managed to elude the Derby defence. But it required an acrobatic
save from Robert Green in the 38th minute to preserve West Ham's lead. A
cross from the left by David Jones was head goalwards by Robbie Savage only
for Green to tip the ball over the crossbar. Derby's most dangerous play was
provided down the left flank by Eddie Lewis and a number of his crosses
caused the home side mild consternation before being cleared. West Ham were
quickly into their stride in the second half and Noble put Sears away on the
left flank only for the young striker's cross to elude the outstretched boot
of Ljungberg in the six-yard box.
In the 50th minute Ljungberg and Parker combined on the edge of the penalty
area but the latter's final shot flashed wide of Carroll's left-hand
Derby began to enjoy their best spell of the game but the final ball into
the penalty area often let them down. West Ham required the help of
goalkeeper Green again in the 62nd minute when Mears burst into the penalty
area. The Derby midfielder shaped to lift the ball over the advancing Green
but the West Ham 'keeper dived at his feet to collect the ball just in time.
But in the 64th minute Mears made no mistake when Hossam Ghaly put him clean
through with just Green to beat. This time the Derby midfielder kept his
cool and sent a right-foot drive into the net. The goal was heralded with a
chorus of boos from the home fans who had slowly watched County get on top
as the half wore on. West Ham hit back immediately but got nothing when
Savage pulled back Ljungberg on the edge of the penalty area. Manager Alan
Curbishley was verbally abused in the 75th minute when he replaced Sears
with Carlton Cole. His decision was greeted with a chorus of 'you don't know
what you're doing' as Sears left the field. But Curbishley was vindicated
two minutes later when Cole finished off a run and cross by Ljungberg to
give West Ham all three points.
Vinny's Derby Report - West Ham Online
Vinny - Sat Apr 19 2008
West Ham United 2 Derby County 1
It has been difficult to write anything about our recent performances and it
has been difficult to get myself to actually do this one. We may have won
today, and some may think there should be nothing to complain about, but
this performance was no different to any of the previous four or five, its
just that we were playing Derby who are simply awful.
Despite Derby being a poor side (probably the premiership's worst ever),
they may well think that they deserved at least a point from this one, and
there certainly is an argument for that although we did have many guilt
edged chances in the second half which we failed to take due to some woeful
The crowd were always going to get on the back of the players and the
manager if we were not winning or even playing well. This utter predictable
game finished with the crowd actually booing despite picking up all three
points. I dread to think what would have happened if Derby had have won the
game, and there was a point in the second half, just after their goal that
this might have actually transpired.
The now famous West Ham injury crisis again reared its ugly head with both
Matthew Upson, Jonathan Spector and Dean Ashton the latest to join the
injury list. With Upson, it seems like last season all over again when we
kept rushing him back, only for him to have multiple setbacks.
In defence, John Pantsil replaced Jonathan Spector at right back, with Lucas
Neill returning to partner James Tomkins at center half. Tomkins was coming
in for the injured Upson.
It was all change in midfield, with Freddie Ljungberg replacing Luis Boa
Morte on the left hand side, Mark Noble returning from injury to replace
Hayden Mullins in the center and Julien Faubert was on the right wing in
place of Nolberto Solano who like Boa Morte and Mullins, had dropped to the
Derby were at sixes and sevens during the opening ten minutes, as they
invited pressure with our players looking a bit bewildered as how to react
to being let attack at will.
We won a number of free kicks (from an very inconsistent referee) but the
delivery was generally poor, with Mark Noble trying his luck with a low 25
yard effort which was easily saved by ex West Ham goal keeper, Roy Carroll.
Carroll had enjoyed an excellent reception from a West Ham crowd who started
the day in a very loving mood, with Tyrone Mears also gaining a very good
reception despite playing on six games and being generally shit.
It was no surprise that we were struggling to make the breakthrough despite
being totally dominant, because we just don't have that player who can play
the final ball.
A shot from Scott Parker when high over the bar as you could sense
frustration about to creep into the players and of course the support.
A free kick was won after the rotund figuar of Alan Stubbs pushed Zamora.
The free kick was swung in by George McCartney for Bobby Zamora to easily
head past Carroll from close range.
Zamora should have never been allowed to get to the ball as he was being
marked by the Derby defender Dean Leacock, but for some reason Leacock let
him go at the crucial moment for Zamora to have the easiest of finishes.
This was Zamora's first goal of the season, and it was a very positive sign
because we have found goals very hard to come by this season, and Zamora is
always good for the odd goal.
Derby seemed to fall apart at that moment and it seems as though they must
do this a lot but we could not keep the tempo going after the goal and I
could not believe that we were happy to sit back and roll the ball about.
There were moments where we should have increased our lead by the passing
from Ljungberg was awful and cost us on more that one occasion. The main one
was when a simply square pass to Zamora would have surely given us another
goal, but the casual lazy pass from a casual lazy footballer made sure the
ball never reached it's destination.
Derby were not dead just yet because of these let off's and nearly equalised
when a Robbie Savage header was tipped over the bar by Robert Green.
Despite a bright opening twenty minutes, we faded away in the second half
and Derby were gradually coming more and more into the game. We needed to
make sure we came out in the second half all guns blazing because against
side such as Derby, whose weakness is their backline and defensive
positioning (like Bolton and Sunderland) attacking is the best option.
Whatever Paul Jewell said to the Derby players at half time seemed to work
(or maybe it was what Curbishley didn't say) because Derby came out like a
different team and had us on the back foot.
Just before Derby had their best spell of the game we did have a couple of
half chances from Sears and then Parker, but it was the visitors who started
to play some neat football as they pressed for an equaliser.
It was Eddie Lewis on the left hand side who was causing us problems by
putting in some dangerous crosses which seemed to have Neill and Tomkins
wondering who should go for the ball. Derby could obviously sense our
confusion as they became more ambitious with there attacks by trying to play
the ball in behind us.
This seemed to be getting them joy as a ball through found the pacey Tyrone
Mears who burst into the area but Robert Green made himself big (no not like
that) and smothered the ball denying Mears what looked like a certain goal.
In typical West Ham fashion, we didn't learn, and Mears again burst through
but this time he made no mistake. It actually came from a corner for us,
which was poor (as usual) and Derby broke with Mears running through and
finishing well to send the travelling Derby support wild.
We had watched the team get slowly worse as the game went on and this goal
did not come as too much of a surprise to me. And neither did the boo's
I have always had a feeling of anger in situations like this but for some
reason I found myself actually smirking at the situation we had found
ourselves in because I found it totally predictable. If you had asked many
before the game to describe how the game would go, I doubt many would have
said much different to what was actually happing. It was farcical and it
wasn't just because we had conceded but it was that expectancy that we would
coupled with the boring football that had already been fed to us.
Curbishley didn't make any changes immediately, deciding not to bring on
Solano who had already taken off his tracksuit. Curbishley instead waiting
for about ten minutes to see if we could get ourselves back on track.
A cross from John Pantsil found the unmarked Parker but the midfielders
diving header was straight at Carroll when it should have been finding the
back of the net.
The by now awful Zamora scuffed a shot from just a few yards as frustration
levels began to rise. Zamora had been going through a phase of doing
everything wrong, with some of his passing being criminal.
And it was just after another awful Zamora pass that Curbishley decided to
make a change with Carlton Cole entering the fray and replacing Freddie
This resulted in the fans chanting "You don't know what you're doing"
towards Alan Curbishley. I think many had been waiting for this opportunity
to abuse Curbishley and although I was not chanting myself, I was not to
pleased that it had been Sears who had been replaced instead of Zamora.
Granted, Sears had found it hard, especially the physically to get into the
game, but I still believed he could have an impact on the game, whereas,
everything Zamora had done in the second half was abysmal.
If people were chanting this towards Curbishley because they didn't want to
see Carlton Cole come on then frankly they are idiots. We needed something
else up front and having witnessed Cole destroy Derby earlier in the season,
he was a must to come on.
Two minutes after coming on, Cole would score the winner after some nice
play down the left hand side, let Ljungberg get in behind the Derby defence
and his square pass gave Cole the easiest of finishes.
The goal met with muted celebrations from the crowd who were quite obviously
still not impressed by what they had witnessed, and to be honest, I don't
really blame them.
A few dodgy kicks aside, this was solid performance from a player who would
get my vote as player of the season.
Still has his erratic moments, but overall this performance was decent and
there was not too much to complain about. He offered good support for
Faubert, and did his defensive duties well.
Playing at center half didn't seem to phase him too much as he made some
crucial interventions. Still prone to the silly foul or misjudgement of the
ball, but of all the bad performances we have seen from the captain this
season, this was not too bad.
Still has a lot to improve on and continues to have that one misjudgement of
the ball which can be very costly. He got away with one misjudgement of a
bounce, and he really needs to be more patient when going in for a tackle as
he often sells himself. In the air he is immense and when he does make a
good tackle it does stand out as it was timed well. But still has a lot to
Derby had a lot of play down his side which left him chasing circles at
times. Looked as though he needed to lie down in the second half with his
performance really flagging. But Curbishley said we didn't need another left
I thought this would be a great opportunity to see how good he can be on the
ball as he would get a bit more time and space. But once again, all we saw
was a good athlete with limited football skills.
All huff and puff with little susbstance. Anoymous for most of the game and
his set pieces were toilet. If this was Mullins everyone would be screaming
at how shit he was.
The only player today who looked as though he wanted the ball. He always
wanted to be involved whether it was tackling or passing and although not
everything came off, this is the sort of committed and energetic performance
I want to see from our players. People can say that our players don't care
about this season any more, but it doesn't seem as though Parker is one of
Made the winner with a simply square pass, but he should have had at least
another two assists to his name with his passing being way off form.
Never got into the game and apart from a decent attempt in the early stages
of the second half he was anonymous for most of his time on the pitch. It
didn't help that we were playing high balls towards him when he needs passes
in behind the defence for him to run onto.
I've often been accused of having a problem with Zamora in his time at West
Ham, and apart from objecting to being called a c*nt time and time again
when he scores a goal, I've always appreciated his contribution to the club.
But I have no problem saying that despite his goal today, he was utter shit
and couldn't pass water at times.
Carlton Cole (on for Sears 75 mins)
If only he could have scored a few more goals this season, he would be in
the running for player of the year! Did all he needed to do today by coming
off the bench and getting the winning goal.
Nolberto Solano (on for Faubert 78 mins)
Made little impact.
Luis Boa Morte (on for Ljungberg 90 mins)
Came on to a chorus of boo's.
Anyone who was not overjoyed by today's performance will of course be
criticised of never being happy, but I think if you dig deep into your
brains you will see that it isn't as simple as that.
This end of the season cannot come too soon, and I for one will be glad when
it's over and it will be very interesting to see the in's and out's in the
With regards to Alan Curbishley, I am firmly of the opinion that he has done
a decent job at the club, but it not the man to move us on any further. And
you can use excuses of injuries all you want, but it would take a lot to
change my opinion.
Newcastle next, and unless the team actually become anything other that
shit, then we will struggle.
West Ham Utd 2 Derby County 1: Cole vindicates Curbishley as boo birds sing
By Jim Foulerton at Upton Park
Sunday, 20 April 2008
The lynch mob were kept at bay as West Ham avoided embarrassment at the
hands of doomed Derby thanks in no small part to the second-half
substitution by manager Alan Curbishley, who was booed when he replaced
Freddie Sears with Carlton Cole late in the day. Cole duly chipped in the
winner but still the fans turned on their team as the final whistle sounded.
You would have thought, with Derby relegated and the Hammers in mid-table,
that it wasn't a game to get overly excited about. West Ham just
aboutdeserved the points to end a sorry sequence of results, although there
was some concern for the home fans when Tyrone Mears cancelled out Bobby
Zamora's first-half opener.
Curbishley had made seven changes, most of them enforced, from the team
beaten 1-0 at Bolton last weekend and pleaded for patience from supporters.
"I was a bit disappointed," he said when asked about the booing and the now
familiar chant of 'You don't know what you're doing'. He added: "We need a
bit of realism and appreciation for what has gone on here this season in
terms of injuries."
His opposite number Paul Jewell has said that he can take the "pain and
humiliation" so long as Derby mount a strong promotion challenge in the
Championship next season. There was an impressive number of fellow
masochists in the away end, something that Jewell acknowledged keeps him
going in these dark times.
This was his 21st game without a win since taking over from Billy Davies,
and if Derby fail to register another victory from their remaining three
games they will become only the second team to record just one triumph in a
"I thought we felt sorry for ourselves in the first 20 minutes," said
Jewell, referring to last week's 6-0 drubbing by Aston Villa. "But in the
second half I thought we played well and West Ham were probably hanging on a
bit. It augurs well for next season."
West Ham started the brighter and were ahead after 20 minutes. A left-footed
free-kick floated in by George McCartney caught out the flat-footed Dean
Leacock and Zamora had the simple task of heading past Roy Carroll from
close range. Simple, save for the fact it was the injury-plagued striker's
first goal in a year.
Robbie Savage got his head to a cross by David Jones and forced a save from
Robert Green but other than that Derby rarely threatened in the first
period. Perhaps Jewell reminded them at half-time that West Ham had managed
just two clean sheets in their previous 19 games for the visitors came out
with a bit more sparkle.
Alan Stubbs, the veteran centre-half, headed wide and soon Hossam Ghaly's
pass sent Mears on his way but Green saved at his feet.
Scott Parker and Mark Noble did their best to reassert West Ham's authority
but it was the unlikely Ghaly-Mears combination that brought Derby level,
Mears capitalising on Ljungberg being exposed before finishing powerfully.
Like Zamora, it was the former West Ham player's first goal of a season
which has been spent largely in the treatment room.
Curbishley antagonised the home fans by bringing on Cole for Sears but
vindication came just four minutes later when Cole put West Ham ahead with a
tap-in after a neat one-two between Ljungberg and Noble.
Savage missed with a later header and Curbishley was spared. Still, though,
the fans vented their anger as the final whistle sounded.
Had Jewell ever heard of a team being booed off after winning? "I wish I'd
had the chance," he quipped.
West Ham fans show anger at Alan Curbishley - Telegraph
By Andrew Warshaw at Upton Park
Last Updated: 12:31am BST 20/04/2008
West Ham (1) 2 Derby (0) 1
It isn't every day that a team gets booed off after winning, so you can
imagine Alan Curbishley's sense of bewilderment yesterday. The victory may
have been narrow and the opposition relegated Derby but West Ham fans appear
to be a breed apart in terms of expectations. Curbishley had already
suffered trademark chants of "you don't know what you're doing" when
substituting Freddy Sears for Carlton Cole, only to be vindicated as Cole
knocked home Freddy Ljungberg's cross after Tyrone Mears, against his former
club, had cancelled out Bobby Zamora's first goal of the campaign. True,
after Cole's winner, the visitors had West Ham hanging on, in the process
making them look like the Championship-bound team. But that was no excuse
for the way the fans turned against the players at the final whistle. West
Ham have suffered more injuries than any other Premier League side this
season. Indeed, not once has Curbishley been able to field the same 11 twice
in succession. Just before yesterday's game came the latest pair of blows as
Matthew Upson and Jonathan Spector were each laid low. "There is not too
much realism and appreciation of what we've had to put up with this season,"
"Week-in, week-out we've had key players missing. Last week we lost Anton
Ferdinand in the first minute and with the two latest injuries, that makes
six centre-halves out."
To illustrate Curbishley's point, West Ham gave a first home start yesterday
to James Tomkins and a first start at all to Sears, while Julien Faubert, a
£6?million buy last summer, was playing for only the third time since
arriving from Bordeaux. Oh, and Dean Ashton, West Ham's best striker, was
out with tonsillitis. No wonder Curbishley, who has been asked by his bosses
to trim the squad this summer, was tearing his hair out. "Obviously I'm
disappointed with the crowd's reaction because we've had a catalogue of
disasters from day one, five or six long-term injuries plus impact injuries.
It's just gone on, and on and on. Yes we've got a big wage bill but a lot of
other clubs have swamped our spending."
West Ham fans would argue that they pay to see entertaining football in the
traditions of the club and in truth the team were at times unimaginative to
the point of boring. But the bottom line is that they are still in the top
half of the table and beat a side who had lost their previous two away games
also by a single goal.
Paul Jewell was asked whether he had ever been booed off for winning a game.
"I wish I had had the opportunity," he joked as Derby again failed to add to
their 11 points. If it stays like that, the Rams will become only the second
club in history to go through an entire season in English football with a
single league victory. "I've said the same thing ever since I've been here,
I can't wait to go again next season because the whole mentality of the club
will change in the summer," Jewell said. "What keeps me going is the support
we get. Every home game is a full house and we sell out our away allocation.
They've had to watch some rubbish - though not today. It shows what a huge
club this is.
Man-of-the-match: Bobby Zamora 8/10. Scored his first of the season, had 3
shots all on target and set up two scoring chances.
Telegraph verdict: Andrew Warshaw at Upton Park
Best moment of the match: Carlton Cole's winner which ensured Alan
Curbishley had last laugh over disgruntled West Ham fans.
Worst moment of the match: Derby's defending has plagued them all season and
it happened again when, after 20 minutes of parity, Dean Leacock was left
ball watching and paid the price as Bobby Zamora fired West Ham in front.
Match rating: 7/10
Agent insists West Ham not seeking buyers for Neill
tribalfootball.com - April 19, 2008
Lucas Neill's agent has denied the West Ham skipper will be leaving Upton
Park in the summer. The 31-year-old only joined the Hammers from Blackburn
in January 2007 but reports this week suggested he could be on his way out
of east London as manager Alan Curbishley makes plans for next season.
However, the Australia defender's manager Paddy Dominguez dismissed the
report and insists neither he nor Neill had had contact with the club over
the matter. Dominguez told Fox Sports: "We have not been approached by West
Ham in regards to that, reviewing his contract or taking a pay cut. "It
doesn't make sense that a manager who only 14 months ago brought Lucas to
the club and has installed him as captain would look to sell him. "It would
be very strange. Lucas' relationship with Alan is good and he is relishing
the role of captain. "Seeing that it's come from the British tabloids and no
quote from Curbishley or West Ham, I wouldn't give it too much credibility."
Southampton extend deal for West Ham keeper Wright
tribalfooball.com - April 19, 2008
Championship strugglers Southampton have extended goalkeeper Richard
Wright's loan from West Ham until the end of the season. The Hammers stopper
has shone since he joined the Saints at the end of March - keeping two clean
sheets in four games to help pull them out of the bottom three. And with
regular number one Kelvin Davis still sidelined with a dislocated finger,
Wright is needed more than ever as the Saints look to avoid the drop to
Manager Nigel Pearson told the club's official website: "I am delighted
Richard is able to stay until the end of the season. He has done well for us
and has enjoyed his football. "He has made some outstanding saves and has
looked confident and composed and he had been a big presence for us while
Kelvin has been sidelined."
Curbishley denies West Ham cash cuts
tribalfooball.com - April 19, 2008
Alan Curbishley has denied he has been directed by Icelandic owner
Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson to slash the wage bill at West Ham. Curbishley, whose
biggest earners at Upton Park include Freddie Ljungberg, Lucas Neill and
Kieron Dyer, said: "We are like all clubs, we want to improve, we might have
to wheel and deal in the summer - but I have not been speaking to the
chairman and had certain people brought up. "I am under absolutely no
pressure to do things which I do not want to do. "I have got 28 senior
players, but you need a squad and that has been shown this season."
Curbishley hits out at Hammers fans - Guardian Series
Alan Curbishley appealed to West Ham fans for more appreciation of their
achievements this season after his side were booed off at the end of their
2-1 win over relegated Derby. Disgruntled West Ham fans also chanted 'You
don't know what you're doing' in the 75th minute when Curbishley replaced
young striker Freddie Sears with Carlton Cole. But Curbishley was vindicated
two minutes later when Cole fired the winner from a cross by Freddie
"We are delighted to get the result," said the Hammers boss. "But I am a bit
disappointed because there has not been too much appreciation of what has
gone and what we have had to put up with this year."
He continued: "I don't think there is much appreciation going on at the
moment and I can't do too much about that. "The players are very
disappointed with it. But I know what happens here, you put the results
together and it turns the other way. "When the team is winning, people don't
like coming here because of the backing we get. When they are not happy they
let you know. But surely there has got to be some realism and appreciation
of what has happened to us this year week-in, week-out we've been under the
cosh. "I have been very appreciative of the players who have been playing
because we have had loads of problems. We've had players missing all year
and I think we had 14 out for this game. Derby boss Paul Jewell was
delighted with his side's second-half performance, but he knows his biggest
job will be undertaken in the summer. "I thought we played well in the
second half," said the Rams boss. "I think West Ham were hanging on at the
end. We just didn't have that final pass or killer instinct, but the
second-half performance augurs well for next season. "The whole mentality of
the club will change in the summer. Some people will be going out and some
will be coming in. What keeps me going is the support we've had, they have
been unbelievable. They have encouraged us, even though they know we are not
good enough. They have stayed with the team."