Filed: Sunday, 13th February 2011
By: Staff Writer
Carlton Cole has praised Scott Parker for an inspirational team talk that he
feels changed the course of yesterday's game. Cole, spoting a huge fat lip
from the challenge that led to his second-half goal revealed that Parker -
not the management team - was responsible for the team's amazing turn of
fortune at The Hawthorns as they came from 3-0 behind to snatch a point. "In
the first half, we were really, really poor," said Cole, talking to the BBC.
"We came out and weren't at the races. There's not much I can say, I can't
explain that performance, it was diabolical. But second half, it was like a
new team out there, it was unbelievable. "Scott Parker, at half time, was
inspirational in the changing room. I told him when we came off the pitch
'you just gave me so much motivation'. He showed a lot of passion and it
spurred us on in the second half. I can't even remember exactly what he said
but he was in the zone, I've never seen him like that. I was like 'wow, this
is the real deal'. "I know you could say to yourself you're a professional
football player, you should have that in you already but sometimes you need
your captain to come across like than. But it was inspirational; if you were
in there you'd have had a tear in your eye."
Cole - who took his Premier League tally for the season to four goals with
yesterday's header - also had special praise for his new strike partner
Demba Ba, who notched a brace, hit the post and had an effort cleared off
the line. "I've got to give enough respect to Demba - he's just come in and
he's taken the game by the scruff of the neck, got two goals and hit the
post," Cole added. "He was unplayable today I think and those kind of things
will spur us on in the games to come - and we need those kind of
performances because he's going to be a big player for us. "Also Freddie
Piquionne when he came on - inspirational, set up my goal and showeda great
attitude. Obviously he wasn't in the starting line-up today but he came on
and led us to getting a draw. I can't speak highly [enough] of him."
Hammers closer to stadium keys
Robertson happy with OPLC process
Last updated: 13th February 2011
Hugh Robertson has confirmed the Government are close to rubber-stamping
West Ham's bid to move into the Olympic Stadium. The Olympic Park Legacy
Company (OPLC) announced on Friday that they were recommending the Hammers
as the preferred bidder over Tottenham after a unanimous vote.
Two Government departments - culture, media and sport, and communities and
local government - and the London Mayor's office now have to ratify the
decision. Robertson, the sports and Olympics minister, has studied the
documents produced by OPLC, and has been satisfied the process had been done
correctly. He said: "I have read all the board papers carefully and I'm
entirely sure myself the OPLC's process was robust and independent."
Asked if in that case he would vote for West Ham to get the stadium, he
added: "There is a process to go through but West Ham are clearly in the
lead. I'm absolutely convinced that the OPLC process has been robust and
independent, so yes. "We want to make a formal announcement to Parliament
but we know the clock is ticking and we want to get it done as quickly as
Robertson said he did not believe the issue of the running track would cause
problems to football fans at the stadium, and said West Ham could have
retractable seating so long as they kept their promises to athletics. He
added: "People tend to think of a 1980s mixed use stadium. This is a much
more modern stadium, the sightlines are much better, the fans are much
closer to the centre spot than the outer seats at Wembley. "Anybody who has
stood in the middle of where the pitch will be will tell you that it looks
much, much better. If West Ham want to bring in retractable seating and can
still fulfil the promises they made to athletics then that's fair enough."
Dicks to join Hammers staff
Former fans' favourite poised to take coaching role
Last updated: 13th February 2011
Julian Dicks is closing on a return to West Ham as part of the club's
coaching staff. The former fans' favourite took in two spells at Upton Park
during his playing days, making over 250 appearances for the club. His
determination and combative approach made him a cult hero on the terraces
and it is felt that commitment could be used within the current set-up.
Hammers boss Avram Grant recently drafted Wally Downes into his back-room
team and feels Dicks would be another useful addition. The 42-year-old, who
is currently in charge of Ryman League outfit Grays Athletic, admits to
having already discussed a possible role with the club and hopes he will
soon be back in familiar surroundings. "I think the meeting went well and I
am very positive about the prospects of joining up with West Ham," Dicks
told Daily Star Sunday. "I have never made a secret of my desire to help out
the club in any capacity and I hope I can come on board and help."
Time to team us up, Scotty
By DEAN SCOGGINS
SCOTT PARKER left his West Ham team-mates and coaching staff "close to
tears" with an inspirational half-time speech at West Brom. The Hammers
skipper took his leadership to new levels after his side went 3-0 down in a
woeful first-half display. SunSport understands Parker told the players to
remember 'those fans use every last penny they earn to come and sing their
hearts out for us'. He also ordered Avram Grant's under-achievers to show
they deserve to wear the claret and blue jersey.
West Ham roared out after the break and grabbed a 3-3 draw that keeps them
just two points adrift of safety. Parker said afterwards: "It was a time for
us to be realistic as to what went on out there and a few of those words hit
home. "We went out and put in a shift and maybe we could have won it. "There
were a few tactical points but we knew we had let ourselves down. "We
weren't awake for the first 15-20 minutes. Exactly what you would expect to
be said was said."
Graham Dorrans, Jerome Thomas and a Winston Reid own goal put the Baggies in
the box seat. But a Carlton Cole header and two goals from Demba Ba earned a
crucial point. Parker is already a hero with the Hammers faithful but should
he now lead the team clear of relegation, his name will be put alongside the
greats of the club. The captain added: "There was a lot said. We should be
happy we went out and got a draw from that position. "It was a disastrous
start but in the grand scheme of things we have to be happy with a point."
Striker Cole said: "Scott showed a lot of passion in the changing room and
it spurred us on. It was inspirational and if you were in there, you would
have had a tear in your eye. "We did not want to disappoint ourselves, the
manager, our families and the fans. I know you could say that if you are a
professional footballer, then you should have that in you anyway - but
sometimes you need your captain to step up like that."
Two-goal hero Ba said boss Grant also had words at half-time. The Senegal
star, who was making his first Premier League start, explained: "We were
sleeping in the first half. "At half-time, the manager said it was time we
had to play like men. He said we had to start fighting and we did that."
Hammers co-owner David Gold left his seat in disgust when the team went
three behind. But he and David Sullivan insist they are behind Grant.
Cole lifts the lid on Parker's tear-jerking half-time speech
Published 23:00 13/02/11 By Darren Lewis
Carlton Cole has revealed how Scott Parker's Churchillian half-time team
talk turned the tide of West Ham's battle at West Brom. Down 3-0 at the
break, with Winston Read chipping in with an own goal, stand-in skipper
Parker delivered a call to arms which sparked a remarkable comeback, the
Hammers stunning Albion three times in the second-half and almost winning.
Cole told how Parker's stirring, emotional words changed completely the
attitude of the team after the break. The West Ham striker said: "When we
came out we didn't want to disappoint ourselves, we didn't want to
disappoint the manager, we didn't want to disappoint our families, everyone
that supports us, the fans. "In the first half we were really, really poor.
"I must say, Scott was just in the zone. I've never seen him like that and I
was like, 'Wow! This is the real deal'. "I know you could say to yourself,
'You're a professional football player, you should have that in you
already'. But sometimes you need your captain to come across like that. It
was inspirational. If you were in there you'd have a tear in your eye."
Vinny's West Brom Report
Vinny 13 Feb 2011
West Ham Online
West Bromwich Albion 3 West Ham United 3
A quite incredible second half fight back saw West Ham come from three goals
down to snatch a point at the Hawthorns. Anyone who witnessed the first half
will surely agree that the idea of us coming back in the second half seemed
highly unlikely given how poor we were in the first half. We deserved to be
3-0 down and but for some poor finishing it would have been more. But the
players showed a fight in the second half I have not seen in a long time and
two goals from new signing Demba Ba completed the amazing come back.
It was a game that would leave you breathless and the contrast in emotions
during each half was striking. Many around me were saying that the players
were not fit to wear the shirt given how we performed in the first half and
it was difficult to disagree but getting the first goal early on in the
subsequent half gave everyone a lift. I have to say I did not think we would
get the equalising goal as time just seemed to be running out and we had
stopped attacking. The finish from Demba Ba to score the third goal was
fantastic and he showed some quality technique.
Maybe I am being greedy but I did leave the ground with a little
disappointment niggling away that we did not actually win the game given our
second half domination and chances we had. Avram Grant made a few changes to
the side who were so poor against Birmingham City last weekend in the 1-0
In the centre of defence with Danny Gabbidon, James Tomkins and Matthew
Upson all out injured it was Winston Reid and Manuel Da Costa who started
In midfield Victor Obinna was out and replaced on the left by Luis Boa
Morte. In the striking positions, Robbie Keane is out for a month with
injury so did not play and Fredrique Piquionne was dropped to the bench.
This saw Carlton Cole start alongside Demba Ba who was making his full debut
for the club.
Straight away West Brom looked as though they wanted it more and proceeded
to play passing football around us as we chased shadows. Even in the first
minute West Brom has a chance as a ball into Fortune saw the striker have
lots of space to run into but his shot was straight at Robert Green. But we
were not to be as lucky moments later when Odemwinge burst past Mark Noble
far too easily and slipped the ball to Graham Dorrans who hit an unstoppable
shot past Robert Green from outside the area to make it 1-0.
It was the worst possible start and despite it being a very good goal we had
not begun in the manner which we should have and it was clear that something
was very wrong with the way we had approached the game. We couldn't get hold
of the ball and were still being put under pressure from a rampant West Brom
side. They should have had a quick second goal when Odemwinge burst down the
left and turned Da Costa inside out and hit a shot which Green could only
palm out to Brunt but his shot hit is own man Fortune, preventing it from
But West Brom would not be kept out much long as Carlton Cole gave the ball
away far to easily in his own half and the ball was slipped through to
Fortune who lay the ball back for Jerome Thomas who was able to get into the
area with no defender approaching him and he curled the ball past Robert
Green to make it 2-0. This was a terrible goal to conceded and our defending
was truly shocking. No one got near to Thomas and he had far too much time
to pick his spot.
A lot of frustration and anger was coming from the West Ham supporters who
were in a bit of shock that when up against a team in a similar league
position we had simply not turned up. Our defending was as bad as you are
likely to see it and West Brom really should have scored a third when a long
and hopeful ball forward saw Thomas out muscle both Reid and Da Costa then
round Robert Green only to fail to apply what seemed like a simple finish.
As Thomas fell over his own feet the West Brom fans cried out for a penalty
but the referee turned the appeal down.
Going forward we were offering little although we did have a goal ruled out
when Parker played Carlton Cole in on goal and he scored from close range
but the linesman's flag was up for offside. Things were get worse for us as
Parker gave away a free kick and we showed our dreadful defending once
The free kick was taken by Dorrans and as the ball evaded the West Brom
players it was Winston Reid who got his positioning all wrong and diverted
the ball past Robert Green to make it 3-0. The own goal just summed up our
performance and in particular Winston Reid who was horribly out of his
With half time approaching we needed to get a goal back and were close to
doing so when a corner into the area was cleared as far as Demba Ba whose
shot was stopped on the line and knocked onto the post by the defender. The
wood work would be rattled again moments later when Gary O'Neil took a shot
from a long way out which smashed off the top of the cross bar and the ball
came out to Cole who set up Ba but his shot was deflected over the bar.
From the resulting corner the ball found the head of Manuel Da Costa who had
a free header but his attempt was straight at the keeper.
Boo's could be heard from just about every West Ham fan as the half time
whistle was blown. Many I am sure had many thoughts about leaving and I am
sure that a few did. Anyone who did leave does have my utmost sympathy as
they would have missed one of the most enjoyable halves of football I have
witnessed involving West Ham in a long time.
No changes were made at half time but we came out with a different attitude.
Only five minutes had gone and we got ourselves back in the game. It was
Mark Noble who showed vision and the ability to execute the pass into the
area for Demba Ba to take down and finish from close range scoring on his
full debut. The West Ham fans came to life sensing that there may well be
way back into the game and this was clear that the players thought so too as
we attacked West Brom giving them no time to get on the ball. Just a minute
later a corner from Noble was met by the head of Boa Morte but it was
straight at the keeper.
Scott Parker burst forward and was fouled by Chris Brunt which saw the West
Brom man go into the book for the tackle. Whilst we were about to take the
free kick Avram Grant made his first change of the game as Luis Boa Morte
came off to be replaced by Frederique Piquionne. Noble took the free kick
and played it into the area for Piquionne who had not been picked up by any
West Brom defender and he put his header across the area for Carlton Cole to
score from close range to make it 3-2 Cole took a heavy blow to the face in
scoring the goal and had to receive lengthy treatment but was fine to
The come back was on and with 30 minutes left I think most of us were
confident that we would get back in the game given how West Brom had fallen
apart and that were looking as though we were going to score with every
attack. And score we so nearly did again when Noble played Bridge in down
the left and he crossed for Piquionne to head onto the cross bar.
West Brom had a chance themselves to score as Odemwinge went on a good run
and forced Robert Green into a save. I couldn't believe that the referee Lee
Mason did not award a penalty for a foul on Mark Noble in the area. From
where I was it seemed quite clear that Noble had been caught. Noble was at
the heart of things once again moments later when he beat his man down the
left and crossed for Demba Ba whose shot was cleared off the line as West
Brom desperately tried to keep us out. A ball into the area from Jacobsen
was flicked on by Piquionne to Ba who went down under a challenge but the
ref again waved our protests away.
We began to lose the tempo we had created and the home side came back into
the game gradually and had some chances of their own to score a goal which
would have surely finished us off. But as time was running out and the clock
hit 83 minutes we did get the goal our second half performance deserved. A
corner was taken short by Bridge to Mark Noble who played the ball into the
area and it was flicked on by a West Brom defender for Demba Ba to volley
past the keeper. It was a wonderful moment in such a horrible season and the
West Ham fans went absolutely nuts as they had seen their side come back
from what seemed like an impossible situation.
West Brom came forward straight away and there was nearly a cruel twist in
proceedings as Odemwinge found time and space and burst into the area only
for his shot to be tame when he should have scored. We had a couple of half
chances before the final whistle with Piquionne going on a mazy run only for
his shot to go over the bar when if he had got it on target he would have
The final whistle blew and just about every West Ham fan stayed to applaud
the team who had worked so very hard in the second half. Of course it is
easy to say that this is how they should be playing in every half in every
game but I still have to give them credit because I really did not believe
the players had it in them to come back.
Another three goals conceded does not make good reading for Green although
there was not much he could do about any of them as he was left horribly
exposed by his defenders.
The hosts were having a lot of joy down Jacobsen's flank as the Dane looked
a little leggy (perhaps after his performance midweek for Denmark) and
frankly was all over the place, but in the second half he was not troubled
and got forward well to support the attack.
I am willing to accept that he is our fifth choice centre half but even so
he is so far out of his depth I actually felt sorry for him. The own goal
summed up his performance and his season. If he really did cost £4m then the
club must surely be concerned about his lack of progress.
Manuel Da Costa
Whilst not as poor as Reid he still looked pretty awful. Misjudged the
flight of the ball a number of times, looked slow (perhaps not match fit)
and did not inspire me with much confidence at all.
A really good second half performance from Bridge who was playing almost as
an attacking left winger as he got forward time and time again. Put in some
good crosses which caused the West Brom defence problems.
A busy performance from O'Neil who looked comfortable on the ball and was
unlucky not to score in the first half with a shot which hit the bar.
I heard a number of comments criticising Noble's performance but the fact is
he was at the heart of every goal we scored and started a number of attacks.
His crossing in the area actually created all three goals and even the
Piquionne header onto the bal came when he played a good pass through to
Bridge. Should have been awarded a penalty also. He did look slow and was
brushed off the ball easily through the game but he was always involved when
His passing was poor in the first half as much of his execution was poor but
he was the only thing keeping us going in the first half. Judging from the
comments after the game from Carlton Cole the inspiration speech from Parker
at half time is what galvanized the team into their superb second half
performance. He is an inspiration to our players and the leader of our team.
Luis Boa Morte
He works hard but offered nothing near what Obinna would have supplied. Boa
Morte put his foot in as expected but showed little quality as per usual.
His 8th goal of the season makes him our joint top scorer in all
competitions. Cole could not be criticised for being lazy (which in itself
is a lazy criticism) but he lost the ball far too many times for my liking
and continued to be frustrating as he usually he. Most importantly he scored
a goal which is what we need him doing from now till the end of the season.
Making his first start for the club he goes and scored two goals. Not a bad
start then and I have to say I thought he looked very good not just with his
goals but with his control and movement. He was clever on the ball and his
second goal showed wonderful technique. We got back into the game because
the team worked hard but without a player like Ba who could take his chances
we would have come away with nothing.
Frederique Piquionne (on for Boa Morte 57 mins)
A great decision from Grant to be bring him on at this stage as he really
gave us something else going forward and straight away had an impact as his
header across goal gave Cole the simple task of scoring. He was skilful and
good on the ball going forward and showed his ability to beat players.
Jonathan Spector (on for O'Neil 78 mins)
I presume he was brought on to get us a goal given his goal scoring exploits
this season but he didn't get any goal scoring chances. I believe that
Spector is a better option at Centre Half than Winston Reid.
Subs Not Used: Boffin, Kovac, Hines, Faubert, Hitzlsperger
Bookings: Boa Morte, Noble, Spector
Man Of The Match: Demba Ba
West Bromwich Albion: Myhill, Shorey, Scharner, Olsson, Jara, Thomas,
Mulumbu, Dorrans, Brunt, Odemwingie, Fortune
Subs: Carson, Ibanez, Tamas, Morrison, Barnes, Vela, Cox
Attendance: 23, 916
Having been beaten by relegation rivals Birmingham last weekend it was
imperative that we got something out of this game. I was hoping that we
would get all three points from this game and I would have been disappointed
if you had offered me just a point before the game but given that we were
three goals down to take anything from the game was quite remarkable.
Our defending simply has to get better and I am hoping that we will be able
to get at least one the more experienced three centre halves back from
injury for the next game because Reid & Da Costa is not a centre half
partnership I ever want to see again.
Next Game - Burnley (h) - FA Cup 5th Round
The league is important there is no doubt about that but as I have said
before I am bit of a Cup football lover and West Ham are one game away from
a quarter final place which cannot be simply dismissed because we are not
doing well in the league.
I want to win this game. I want to win the FA Cup.
It has been a very interesting a momentous week for the club as we are now
likely to be moving into the Olympic Stadium in a few seasons time. There
seem few West Ham fans who actually want to move but that does not
necessarily mean that everyone else is against it because I seem to sense
much ambivalence amongst many supporters.
I can only presume this is to do with the bid from Tottenham Hotspur as if
we did not get the stadium they would and they then would be playing only a
couple of miles from Upton Park. For me, in the long run would be far worse
for West Ham United than us playing in front of a half empty stadium in the
To prevent us from dropping into the Championship we need to start winning
games and with two home games against Liverpool and then Stoke coming up we
need to make sure we are taking maximum points because time is running out
and whilst I am delighted we fought back in this game we need to get the
We must make sure a repeat of that first half performance is never seen
The View From Avram
"We have what it takes to stay up,The fight in the second half showed that
the spirit was not low. Despite the problems we have had with players that
can't play this season, we have shown a lot of character. Not many teams
could do what we have done at three-nil down.
"We came to win the match and only for neutral supporters was it a great
game. From our side, we were not good in the first half and started very
sloppy. To come back from three-zero is good but it is not good for the
health. But as a manager I can't think about anything other than changing
"I didn't lose my temper. My job was to make them relax and give them the
right things to change the game.
"In my nature, I always think in football things can change. I thought only
about how we could change it because one goal can change everything. That's
"Freddie made a big difference. It was one of the reasons that we wanted to
bring players in the transfer window because we didn't have a good bench.
"It is good to have players like him to come in - or Cole or Ba when they
are on the bench - because we have lost Robbie Keane after his first two
good games and Victor Obinna who was in fantastic form."
"We needed to play Manu da Costa even if he is not 100 per cent fit. It was
not easy for him but he gave everything. We might not have Upson, Tomkins
and Gabbidon back for another week or two."
We attacked so well and the players were very lively and clever in the
second half. We could have won, two times we hit the bar, we hit the post
and had another off the line. It was an unbelievable game.
"We paid for the poor beginning but in psychology terms we will take more
away than West Brom. There were a lot of positives to take from the match. I
don't think it is usual for a West Ham side to come back like this. The
character is here."
Carlton Cole's Comments
"I have got to say our captain today, Scotty Parker, at half-time was just
inspirational in the changing room. I told him when I came off the pitch, I
went up to him and said 'You have given me so much motivation'.
"He was just in the zone, I have never seen him like that. I was like 'Wow,
this is the real deal'. I know that we are professional footballers, we
should have that in us already and we do, but sometimes you need your
captain to come across like that.
"It was inspirational I must say. If you were in there, you would have had a
tear in your eye, I had a tear in my eye.
"He gave a lot. He showed a lot of passion in that changing room, it spurred
us on in the second half. We came out determined that we weren't going to
disappoint anyone, the manager, ourselves, the fans and our families,
everyone with us here who works with us and supports us.
"That was for the fans. They had travelled all the way up here to support us
and it wasn't enough or what we wanted for them in the first half - because
it was really, really poor."
"I have to give my respect to Demba. He took the game by the scruff of the
neck - got two goals and hit the post and the crossbar. He was incredible
today and I this will help to spur us on in the next games.
"Also Freddie Piquionne when he came on, helped set up my goal and showed a
great attitude - obviously he wasn't in the starting lineup today but he
came on and helped us get the draw. I can't speak more highly of him."
"The Fans stuck behind us, stuck with us even though we were 3-0 down. They
were still singing right to the end. The first half was unacceptable, our
travelling fans didn't deserve that.
"I think we can take a lot out of today and put it into our training as well
the rest of the week. Keep on going, that is all we need to do, just never
give up - that is the do or die attitude we need to have."
Avram Grant's half-time warning does the trick for West Ham
Manager reported to have called for better attitude
Carlton Cole gives Scott Parker credit for turnaround
guardian.co.uk, Sunday 13 February 2011 22.00 GMT
Scott Parker and Avram Grant combined at half-time to help motivate a West
Ham fightback against West Brom. Photograph: Alex Morton/Action Images
Avram Grant warned his West Ham United players at half-time against West
Bromwich Albion that if they did not improve their attitude they "would be
out", according to a senior source in the dressing room at The Hawthorns.
West Ham were 3-0 down following a lacklustre first-half display. "The
players were told they had two choices," the source said. "They could either
feel sorry for themselves or try and change the game by adjusting their
attitude and beginning to press West Brom more. The spirit in the team has
been good but [the manager] was not happy. [He] was calm but told them that
if they did not improve they were out."
Carlton Cole revealed after the game that Scott Parker had also given his
team-mates a rousing speech that helped motivate them.
Regarding Parker's intervention the source added: "It was a surprise as
Scott does not normally speak and the changing room can be quiet, which is a
worry [of the manager's]."
Grant had previously shown the squad a league table consisting of their
previous eight games, which places West Ham in the top half of the division,
to boost positivity as the players' confidence is also an ongoing concern
for the Israeli.
Tottenham considering options after West Ham wins Olympic Stadium race
Submitted by Matt Cutler on Mon, 14/02/2011 - 00:4
Tottenham Hotspur is reported to be considering legal action after Barclays
Premier League rival West Ham United was on Friday confirmed as the
'preferred bidder' to move into the London 2012 Olympic Stadium.
Tottenham launched a joint bid with sport and entertainment giant AEG, but
West Ham had pledged to retain an athletics track around the pitch - a vow
that helped to win over the Olympic Park Legacy Company (OPLC).
"The Olympic Stadium site is an essential element in the creation of a
viable Olympic Park and we know that, together with AEG, we provided a first
class proposal to support the sustainability of the whole project," read a
statement from Tottenham.
The statement added: "It was never an option, however, that we would retain
the running track as we believe this to be unacceptable for our supporters
and therefore wholly unviable in the long term...Much has been made of the
promise to keep the athletics track within the Olympic Stadium and,
therefore, we should all expect to see the retention of this track firmly
embedded and legally guaranteed by those entrusted with this legacy
commitment, today and in the future."
The statement continued: "The OPLC's decision has still to be approved by
two Government departments and the Mayor's Office. We shall continue to
monitor the bid process over the coming weeks up until its final
determination, whilst reviewing our position and holding discussions with
our advisors. We shall spend time assessing our situation in respect of a
new stadium and when we have any further information we shall update our
West Ham co-owner David Gold said he was "overwhelmed" by the OPLC's
decision to make West Ham its official preferred bidder to become the tenant
of the £537 million venue after the Games. West Ham vice-chair Karren Brady
added: "We are absolutely thrilled - not only to be named preferred bidder
but also to be named unanimously."