Filed: Sunday, 15th August 2010
By: Staff Writer
Sebastian Coe has endorsed West Ham United's proposed move to the Olympic
Stadium for the first time. The 2012 Games committee chairman, who had
previously appeared hostile to the Irons' bid to move to Stratford after the
Olympic Games two years from now told insidethegames.biz that West Ham's
move 'has got to be a good idea'. "I think it's obviously the situation that
everybody is looking to and I think it's a sensible acceptance that we were
always going to live within the bid commitment," he said, adding: "In
fairness, this is a different West Ham to what it was a few years ago,
where, with the best will in the world, it was fairly transient. "These are
two owners that are committed to the club, committed to the community, that
recognise there is a sensible mix here, of serving a community, but also of
having a permanent tennant in there, which has got to be a good idea."
Coe's comments follow West Ham's recent public admission that the club would
commit to keeping the running track in place after the games - an issue that
Coe has championed from the start, yet one that is threatening to cause a
rift between the club and its supporters, the majority of whom remain
opposed to a move to a stadium with a running track in situ.
Sullivan: Parker still not for sale
Filed: Sunday, 15th August 2010
By: Staff Writer
David Sullivan has reiterated his earlier statement regarding Scott Parker's
immediate future. The Hammers co-chairman, speaking in Monday's edition of
the Daily Mail revealed that he had once again warned off Tottenham from
making a bid for the former Charlton and Newcastle midfielder, despite no
apparent fresh interest from the north London club who had an earlier
test-the-water bid of £7million instantly rejected. "I have told Spurs again
that he [Parker] is not available and not to bother us any further or we'll
report them to the Premier League," Sullivan said. "I made a promise that I
would not sell Scott and I will not, for any amount of money, break that
promise to the West Ham supporters."
Sullivan, who last week reinstated former chairman Terry Brown to his
previously-held position of Honourary Life President added: "For far too
long we have had owners that sell their best players and promise one thing
and do another. This is a new era. We are building a bigger, better West Ham
and when we make a promise, we honour it."
Parker was one of a number of West Ham players who appeared unusually
subdued during Saturday's 3-0 drubbing at Villa Park. Meanwhile, rumours
persist that the 29-year-old is one of several squad memebers to whom
promises had been made by the previous administration - promises that
included certain financial bonuses and other privileges - but not honoured
by the current co-owners as part of their emergency cost-cutting.
Behrami eyes bigger clubs
Swiss midfielder could move away from Hammers
By Simone Bargellini Last updated: 15th August 2010
Valon Behrami is reportedly considering a move away from West Ham should a
bigger club make an offer for him, according to the player's agent. The
Swiss international left Lazio two years ago to move to Upton Park and has
become one of the club's most established players. The midfielder has been
linked with the likes of Manchester United, but has seen his appearances
become more limited due to injury. Despite agent Alessandro Beltrami
claiming that Behrami was content with life at the Hammers, he did state
that if another team showed an interest, then they would need to speak to
the club. "Valon for West Ham is an important player." Beltrami told
tuttomercatoweb. "There would be the will (by Behrami) to play at a club of
a high level and participate in European competitions. "We'll see if this
will be possible in the next few days in the market. "However, it doesn't
depend on us; if any club is interested in Behrami, they must speak with
Help me nail Villa Monsters
By HUGH SOUTHON
DAVID GOLD last night spoke of his terrifying brush with death at the hands
of two 'Villa monsters' West Ham's co-owner, 73, endured the 'most
frightening experience of my football life' as he left Villa Park following
the Hammers' 3-0 defeat on Saturday. His Rolls Royce Phantom pulled up at a
red light beside the King Edward VII pub, a favourite with Villa fans. What
followed was a nightmare of 'epic proportions' that has left him reviewing
his personal security. He said: "People were outside the pub and there was
some good-natured banter when, suddenly, the whole thing turned horribly
sinister and even life-threatening.
"Two guys who can only be described as monsters - animals - ran from the pub
and threw a bottle of beer at the driver's window, smashing it. They then
kicked the car and tried to get in. "Thankfully, the doors lock when the
engine is running otherwise we could have been in serious trouble.
"Eventually, after what seemed an eternity but was probably about a minute,
we were able to pull away. "That bottle could have come through the window
and killed my driver as it was aimed directly at his temple. "Needles of
glass could have hit and maybe killed me if they had gone into my head. The
more I think about it, the worse it gets."
Gold is considering offering a £5,000 reward for information leading to the
arrest and conviction of one or both of the men responsible. He said:
"Despite the speed with which it happened, I saw one woman watching the
whole thing unfold. "I appeal to her and any of the 30 or so people outside
the pub to give any information they have to the police."
The saddest irony is that, had Gold not stopped to sign a programme and have
his photo taken with a disabled Villa fan, he would have avoided the
horrific ordeal. He said: "Had I decided to pass that lad by, I would have
been away and gone but that's not me."It's ironic the acceptable and
unacceptable faces of this game were so close together they almost
The incident has left Gold reviewing his personal security and he admits it
is a cast-iron certainty the Rolls, which sustained damage estimated at
£2,000, will be left in the garage on away trips. Gold added: "I'm sure
these lunatics attacked the car in part because I was once Birmingham City's
chairman. "It's a return to the bad, bad days of football and I appeal
specifically to that young woman to tell the police everything she saw."
Hammers Av to face harsh truth
AVRAM GRANT insists staying clear of the relegation scrap will mean success
for West Ham this season. But on the evidence of their first-half showing at
Villa Park in his first game in charge, the former Pompey manager is in for
another tough season. Hammers were trounced by a Kevin MacDonald-led Aston
Villa and the 3-0 scoreline could have been much worse. Boss Grant said: "I
know it will take time. "I believe you need to build for the future and to
do that it is more easy if you have a good result immediately. "The chairman
David Sullivan said that in the first year he would try to do his best for
the team but there are a lot of financial problems. "If we are not in a
relegation fight, which I believe will be the case, then we can develop our
game. "We need to make the squad stronger. But I think we have a good squad
even now that is capable of showing better than they did here."
Vinny's Aston Villa Report
Vinny - Sun Aug 15 2010
West Ham Online
Aston Villa 3 West Ham United 0
A new season it may be but same old story on the road it was as West Ham put
in a dismal display with Aston Villa totally dominating and deserving of
their victory. After everything we went through last season with so many bad
performances we were looking for something that just gave us a little
indication that it will not be as bad this time around and that we will look
to play differently and attempt to rectify what went so wrong during the
last campaign. You can be forgiven for fearing the worst given how badly we
played and how abject this showing was. Nothing about our play suggested
anything has changed and our defending was concerning in just about every
aspect. It has been a very busy summer at the club with changes in the
managerial department as Gianfranco Zola was correctly dismissed by the
owners. Replacing the worst manager in West Ham history is Avram Grant who
was managing relegated Portsmouth last season.
Only two players have left the club in the summer with Guillermo Franco and
Ilan both released. Coming into the squad we have seen five new signings in
German Midfielder Tomas Hitzlsperger, Defender Winston Reid, Attacking
Winger Pablo Barrera, Striker Frederic Piquionne and Centre half Tel Ben
The noise coming from the owners is that there will be a few more signings
before the transfer window closes at the end of the month and I would
suggest that these need to be made very soon as we simply could not compete
during this encounter with an Aston Villa side who lost there manager
earlier in the week and are set to lose star player James Milner very
Starting in goal was Robert Green fresh off the back of his nightmare World
Cup with England. It would seem that one mistake has ended his England
career and he will be receiving a lot of stick from opposition supporters
throughout the season.
In typical West Ham fashion only one of the new signings actually started
the game with Winston Reid making his debut a right back. The captain
Matthew Upson and James Tomkins were at centre half with Herita Ilunga
returning from a long lay off at left back.
Avram Grant went with five in midfield with Julien Faubert on the right
wing, Luis Boa Morte on the left, Parker and Noble in the middle and they
were joined by Radoslav Kovac whom it seemed was poised to sign for Stoke
City but injury to Tomas Hitzlsperger seems to have put a halt to that deal
to the dismay of many.
Up front on his own was Carlton Cole with Piquionne left on the bench. There
was still no place in the squad for Kieron Dyer and Benni McCarthy, both
deemed inexplicably unfit.
From the very beginning things did not look right as Villa took the game to
us and had already forced a couple of corners within two minutes.
We did not look all that comfortable defending these corners either as Villa
should have done better from one of them with Carew heading wide.
Even at an early stage the West Ham supporters were getting agitated as we
could not get hold of the ball and any time we did find ourselves in
possession the ball would be given straight back to Villa.
The home side should have been a goal up when James Tomkins attempted a back
pass which went terribly wrong and let John Carew in on goal. The striker
raced (well maybe not raced) towards goal but Green seemed to bundle Carew
over with the ball then smacking off Tomkins and hitting the post when it
looked certain to go in.
I had hoped this let off would wake the team up and we would get ourselves
together but it wasn't to be and Villa kept coming at us with wave after
wave of attack. The Villa right winger Albrighton was taking Ilunga apart
and managing to get his cross in every time.
With fifteen minutes on the clock Villa took a deserved lead after some poor
keeping from Robert Green. It started from a cross from Ashley Young which
Green decided to punch away when maybe he could have caught the ball.
The punch was poor and went straight to Albrighton to volleyed the ball to
the back post where Stewart Downing standing in an offside position was
there to tap in.
Whilst we do have an argument regarding Downing being offside, this goal was
coming and you cannot play like we were playing and hope everything we will
go for you.
Moments later Green would be called into action again but this time he would
make a superb save. It was a long punt from a goal kick by Friedel which
caused the problems as John Carew (who our defence could not cope with)
flicked the ball on for Ashley Young to run into space and he chipped the
ball towards goal which looked destined for the back of the net but Green
managed to tip the ball over.
We struggled to make anything happen going forward although a good turn and
run from Carlton Cole nearly ended with an equaliser but his cross come shot
The hosts looked a lot stronger and had so many more ideas than our
toothless performance thus far. It was clear from early on that our team was
set up incorrectly and we would need to address this at half time.
Unfortunately for us with five minutes of the half remaining Villa doubled
their lead with a simply goal.
A throw in just in front of the away supporters saw Boa Morte momentarily
switch off which allowed Villa space and the ball was eventually given to
Ashley Young who put in a pinpoint cross for Stiliyan Petrov to steal into
the box and head past Green.
'Pissed on our chips' is probably a good way to describe how many West Ham
fans were feeling at this moment with this game looking dead and gone.
There was to be one great chance to get back into the game just before the
half time whistle blew as Faubert found space to break and we had players in
support. Faubert picked out Boa Morte but he looked slow on the ball and had
to get the ball onto his right foot to find space for a shot. If he had just
rolled it to Carlton Cole to his right I have no doubt we would have scored
but he tried a shot which Friedel saved and it was cleared.
At half time I slumped to my seat cursing my misguided optimism which I took
into this game. There was nothing to suggest anything had changed although
apart from Reid at right back this was the same team which struggled time
and time again last season.
In a way this was quintessential West Ham - build up your hopes, owners and
manager talk good games, pre season went well and promises of change being
thrown at us from every corner.
Changes at half time were needed and in fairness to Grant he made them with
Piquionne and Barrera being introduced for Boa Morte and Kovac. This saw us
go to a 4-4-2 with Barrera starting on the left although he would swap sides
throughout the half.
For my £38 I did get to see ten minutes of West Ham competing like a proper
football team. Not a great return but for those ten minutes I felt the
season had started and all was right with the world for that short period
We took the game to Villa with intelligent runs from Piquionne causing their
defence problems with their left back getting himself into a muddle or more
than one occasion.
That big chance just need to come our way and of course it did and it looked
as though we had found a way back into the game but for a terrible miss from
The move saw Piquionne move out to the right wing and his cross found Cole
who touched it back for Faubert who dragged his shot wide from around twelve
The 'excitement' ended their and Villa settled down and came back at us
forcing more corners (they had a staggering 15) and with 66 minutes on the
clock they would finish the game off.
For me it was another sloppy goal to conceded. A free kick was given for a
foul on Carew who we really could not cope with.
The free kick was played quickly out to the right hand side to Albrighton to
race for the ball with Tomkins. There was no contest on who was going to
reach the ball as Tomkins looked so very slow and Albrighton got to the ball
first, made a mug out of Tomkins, got in the box and pulled it back for
James Milner to hit a superb left foot shot past Green.
With a fair amount of time still left to play the only hope now is that we
were not going to see a glut of goals and an even worse defeat.
Villa had already hit the wood work twice in the game from the first half
Carew chance and they would hit it again as Ashley Young hit a free kick
which crashed off the bar and over.
John Carew should have scored when a cross saw the striker completely
unmarked in the area but his header was wayward. It was terrible defending
and it looked as though we had given up by that point.
A clever piece of play from Stewart Downing saw his shot hit the bar and the
woodwork would again be rattled when Carew held off our defence, turned and
shot from inside the area only for the ball to hit the post, bounce off
Robert Green and some miss the goal.
It was excruciating to watch us get picked off as easily as we were and many
West Ham fans did not stay to watch anymore as the away section started too
look like the home areas - full of empty seats.
Alessandro Diamanti was brought on but offered little - well unless it's a
free kick that is to be expected isn't it? I suspect that we are the only
team in the Premiership to employ a player simply for set pieces.
A performance which would have looked perfect alongside all those from last
season and whilst panicking and criticising the manager at this stage is
completely stupid, this was a worrying start to the season nonetheless.
Shown no mercy by the Villa supporters and this is something he will have to
get used to throughout this campaign. Made a couple of good saves but his
mistake for their first goal was poor and he should have done a lot better.
It was a punch by a keeper whose confidence must be at low given the
dreadful summer he has had.
Not a great start to his West Ham career. I thought he was a surprise
inclusion given that he hasn't played in any of the first team Pre Season
games. Looked out of his depth, was taken apart by whoever was taking him on
and we will want to see a lot more for him in the coming weeks as on this
display he won't last long.
Our entire defence was very poor and Upson did not do anything to exempt
himself from that criticism either. Should have taken responsibility when
Tomkins was being torn a new one by Carew. This happened last season when
Kevin Davies did the same thing.
A really dreadful performance from Tomkins who could do very little
correctly. When he first broke into the side a few season ago his
performances were often riddled with poor mistakes and these seem to be
creeping back into his game more and more. A major improvement needed.
Looked as though he had found his form against Deportivo last weekend but he
was destroyed by the excellent Villa winger Mark Albrighton who Ilunga could
not get near to. Not good enough.
Faubert was so bad as a right winger that last season we played him at right
back which he did reasonably well without being anything special. The first
thing Grant does is play him as an attacking right winger and Faubert shows
us once again how shit he is. It was a toss up between him and Boa Morte to
be taken off at half time.
Never in the game and poor on the ball whenever he did get it. Found a bit
more space in the second half when the midfield area was less congested but
we could rarely get him the ball. Was strange not to see him go in with one
strong challenge throughout the entire game.
At times he will do something where you think he looks decent but then he
disappears for large chunks of the game. Looks so slow and like Parker he
just wasn't involved enough in the game.
Not many of us expected to see him start given that it seemed as though he
was poised to sign for Stoke earlier in the week. Even with injury to
Hitzlsperger we could have played Piquionne and went to a 4-4-2 or play
Barrera on the wing with Boa Morte playing a more central position. Kovac
was woeful and was taken off correctly at half time.
Luis Boa Morte
Found a bit of space in the first half and quite clearly knew what he wanted
to do but twice his execution was poor. He can see the passes that need to
be made but seems to be lacking in the ability to actually produce them.
Left isolated and when the ball did come to him he kept hold of the ball for
far too long. Cole is best when he has the ball at his feet and is running
at defenders but this only happened the one. This was not a great
performance from a player who has had a great pre season. Need from Cole as
he is out main striker still.
Frederique Piquionne (on for Boa Morte 45 mins)
A positive performance from the French forward who made some intelligent
runs and worked hard on his debut for the club. As this formation in the
first half did not work I would hope Piquionne will start against Bolton.
Pablo Barrera (on for Kovac 45 mins)
Played most of the half on the left hand side and looked confident when in
possession. Can't say he did too much but hopefully we will be seeing more
of him starting with next week.
Alessandro Diamanti (on for Tomkins 72 mins)
Had a shot which went over the bar but did little else.
Subs Not Used: Stech, Gabbidon, Spector, Sears
Bookings: Tomkins, Faubert
Man Of The Match: None
Aston Villa: Friedel, L Young, Dunne, Clark, Warnock, Albrighton, Petrov,
Milner, Downing, A Young, Carew
Subs: Guzan, Weimann, Lichaj, Bannan, Reo-Coker, Beye, Heskey
Attendance: 36, 604
It is of course important to still stay positive despite this crushing
defeat but it is difficult given how we struggled last season. We cannot go
through another relegation battle because last season was such a horrible
time and the negativity surrounding the club and the tension from the
supporters make home games especially an uncomfortable experience.
Trying to search for positives from this game is a difficult task. I liked
the looked Piquionne and Barrera but even the two of them didn't offer too
Last season we started with a victory away to Wolves (our last away win) and
thought we were going to have a decent season which as we know was a
complete false dawn. Hopefully it will be the opposite this time and this
defeat will be just a blip on a wonderful campaign. Ok, maybe I am clutching
at those straws a little but I still don't expect us to be as bad as last
season no matter how bad this display was.
Some people may think it is unrealistic and expecting too much to think we
can push for a top ten place but if Birmingham and Blackburn can finish
there last time around I am unwilling to accept that this is too much for us
Next Game - Bolton Wanderers (Home)
Our bogey side are up next. Bolton have done the double over us during the
last two seasons and they are a team who are simply too physical for us to
contain. If the Villa game is anything to go by then we may struggle again
as Tomkins and Upson find it impossible to deal with strong striker such as
Carew or in Bolton's case Kevin Davies.
There is no need at home to play one up front. We have criticised managers
in the past for playing in the negative way and Grant will not be exempt
from this either.
Whilst it is too early to call this a must win game with Manchester United
and Chelsea to follow in the league it is not inconceivable that we would
find ourselves down at the bottom after just a few games. A win next week
will give us a little bit more confidence which as we know evaporated last
season very easily.
It was terrible performance, a dreaful result and almost impossible to find
any positives from the game.
Welcome to another season of West Ham United.
The View From Grant
"I was not by pleased by the first-half performance or the result," Grant
said. "The first goal was a clear offside but we did not play so well even
though we had two big chances to score at 1-0 and 2-0."
"We didn't score, we didn't play quick and we didn't pass the ball well, so
we made some changes and until they scored again we controlled the game.
Again, we had another two big chances but we didn't score. They did but that
is football. The game was finished."
"Robert Green played well today. But in front of him we didn't play so well.
It was not an easy life for him but the goals were not his fault and he made
some good saves.
"Winston Reid was good for his first game. He did not play in his position
because he is centre-half but for a first performance in the Premier League
he was good. He will be a very good player."
"My players wanted to succeed in this game very much and they had been
waiting for this match, especially after last season but sometimes when
you're so excited you don't end up playing so well.
"Carlton Cole looked isolated but that was not the plan. Players needed to
support him but they didn't and our movement was not so good. Aston Villa
played sharp and quick, which was what we had planned to do. It was not so
good. The reaction after [half-time] was good.
"This is the beginning of the season. When I started here I told the players
that I want to see how they react both after they win and after they lose.
There is a long way to go but, of course, we wanted to win.
"When you play away from home, anything can happen and we didn't want to
lose this game but we lost. As you have seen from all my other teams before
is that they will react after a defeat like this. We will learn and be much,
much better during the season."
Grant: Hammers just need to beat the drop
Published 23:00 15/08/10 By James Nursey
Hammers boss Avram Grant insists his sole aim this term is to stay clear of
the relegation dogfight. Despite a promising pre-season, West Ham were
absolutely appalling on the opening day at Villa Park. The visitors were
lucky to lose only 3-0 and the defeat brought back bad memories of last
term's scrap against the drop. But Grant, who has succeeded Gianfranco Zola,
says his orders this season from the cash-strapped club's hierarchy are
simply to stay up. "I know it will take time," said Grant. "The chairman
said that in the first year he would try to do his best for the team but
there are a lot of financial problems. "He wants to go forward every year
because last year we were battling against relegation so it is a good
target. "If we are not fighting against relegation, which I believe will be
the case, we can develop our game and improve our football. "I believe you
need to build for the future and to do that it is more easy if you have a
good result immediately. "But in this game the result wasn't good and the
performance wasn't so good so we can learn and go forward because it is only
the beginning of the season."
Spurs target Scott Parker to sign five-year deal as Harry Redknapp turns his
attention to £11m striker Loic Remy
Last updated at 11:36 PM on 15th August 2010
West Ham believe Scott Parker will sign a new five-year contract and have
warned Spurs to stay away from the England midfielder. Chairman David
Sullivan told Sportsmail: 'I have told Spurs again that he's not available
and not to bother us any further or we'll report them to the Premier
League.' The 29-year-old still has three years remaining on his current deal
but Tottenham were reported to be weighing up a £7 million bid. Sullivan
reacted angrily to efforts to unsettle Parker by insisting he was "not for
sale at any price, to anyone". He added: 'I made a promise that I would not
sell Scott and I will not, for any amount of money, break that promise to
the West Ham supporters. 'For far too long, have had owners that sell their
best players and promise one thing and do another.
'This is a new era. We are building a bigger, better West Ham and when we
make a promise, we honour it.'
Tottenham are weighing up an £11m offer for Nice striker Loic Remy after
manager Harry Redknapp saw his strikers draw a blank on Saturday. Redknapp
made a personal check on Remy during France's defeat by Norway last
Wednesday along with scouts from Everton, Aston Villa and Chelsea. Everton
may struggle to match Tottenham's offer as they need to sell to help
supplement any bid. Newcastle are showing interest in Victor Anichebe and
West Ham remain keen on Yakubu.
West Ham Chairman David Sullivan Tells Tottenham To Back Off Of Their Chase
Of Scott Parker
Hammers midfielder helped club survive last season's relegation scare
By Anthony Sciarrino
Aug 16, 2010 2:25:00 AM
West Ham United co-owner David Sullivan has warned Tottenham not to pursue
Scott Parker anymore or they will report the club to the Premier League.
After a fantastic season for West Ham last term, Parker has been the subject
of many transfer rumours, but Sullivan had vowed that he would not sell his
star at any price this summer. However, Sullivan believes that the
29-year-old, who has three years remaining on his current deal with the
Hammers, will agree to a new five-year deal, and does not what to hear for
Spurs again. "'I have told Spurs again that he's not available and not to
bother us any further or we'll report them to the Premier League." Sullivan
told the Daily Mail. "I made a promise that I would not sell Scott and I
will not, for any amount of money, break that promise to the West Ham
supporters. "For far too long, have had owners that sell their best players
and promise one thing and do another. "This is a new era. We are building a
bigger, better West Ham and when we make a promise, we honour it."
Parker was a big reason why West Ham barely avoided relegation last season,
finishing in 17th place, just five points above the drop zone.