West Ham United can make it eight games unbeaten if they record a third
straight home victory tonight
Sam Allardyce knows his team can strike out for the top two places in the
npower Championship with victory against Ipswich Town this evening. The
manager has admitted he may well rotate his squad, with Papa Bouba Diop in
contention for the matchday 16, while Jack Collison could return to the
selection as well. David Bentley, Sam Baldock and John Carew are ahead in
the queue to break into the eleven. Big Sam admitted that Ipswich would pose
a tough test and is relishing the prospect of a first home league game under
the lights as the club aim to continue their best start to a league season
in 28 years.
Have you seen Ipswich at all recently?
SA: I watched the TV game against Coventry. Paul Jewell is getting his team
together there and like ourselves has got a lot of experienced players that
have played in the Premier League that are now finding their feet and
beginning to put some good results together. It will be a tough game like
every game is in this league.
What sort of game are you expecting?
SA: I think pretty much like Saturday. Paul Jewell has a lot of Premier
League experience in the team like I have. He has got Keith Andrews, who I
had at Blackburn, and is an excellent player and has scored some real good
goals for them. He has got Jimmy Bullard, Michael Chopra - quite a few
players with Premier League experience in there. They play a similar way to
Peterborough so again it will be about nullifying their strengths and
exposing their weaknesses. We have to make sure we take more of our chances
though. Matty Taylor came off near the end on Saturday. With two games in
four days there is a physical element to consider. Is there a temptation to
mix things up a bit?
SA: I think so. It is nice to have a winning side and that doesn't cause you
too many problems from a selection of point of view. We have only changed it
slightly Abdoulaye Faye and Winston Reid played on Saturday even though
James Tomkins is fit. Abdoulaye had played that well at Millwall we kept him
in against Peterborough. We have only been tinkering with that. The subs
have had chances. Papa [Bouba Diop] is ready now and Sam Baldock keeps
staring at me saying 'when are you going to put me on?'. I have got to get
round to looking at the squad and looking at Ipswich. Even though we have
won on Saturday and are undefeated in seven matches, Is it the right thing
to change one or two of the personnel. It is a difficult thing to change
when you are winning games of football but it is one I have got to have a
serious look at and see if I can make the team that bit better by making a
change. I will be sticking my neck on the line because i am sure if I get it
wrong the fans will let me know!
Home form will be key to promotion bid. An evening game in the league can be
a special occasion. How important is it to have a full house and plenty of
SA: If they make it better than Saturday that will be great because that was
fantastic. Sometimes they show their disappointment and rightly so if they
are not being entertained like they want to see. For me the atmosphere is
going to get better and better. I can't wait to feel the atmosphere on
Tuesday and I hope we can deliver them a performance.
You now have four clean sheets out of eight. That will be important for your
promotion aims, won't it?
SA: We have already scored four goals in three games this season and only
played eight so we know the goals are there. Clean sheets are extremely
important to any side that anyone wants to win anything. The teams that win
things always have the most clean sheets.
It is a cliché but there is no easy game in the Championship is there?
SA: In this league everyone competes and gives everything they have got. You
have to earn the right to play and earn the right to win. We are are well
aware of that and I hope we will give a better performance than we did on
Saturday. That will hopefully lead to another victory as it is a big week
for us. If we can nick six points from six, we will go to Palace on Saturday
in full confidence and try to keep our magnificent away results going.
Big night for new boys
The manager has plenty of selection dilemmas to ponder for this evening's
big home game
West Ham United's new boys are all itching to get going and play their part
against Ipswich Town this evening. Cash turnstiles are open as the Hammers
look to continue their best start to a league season in 28 years, and
manager Sam Allardyce is pondering the inclusion of summer signings David
Bentley, Sam Baldock and John Carew. Bentley has come off the bench in the
last three matches, and is pushing hard to get his first start at the Boleyn
in the claret and blue. Already a popular presence in the dressing room,
Bentley said his approach is always to "work hard with a smile on my face".
He added: "Hopefully West Ham will see the best of me. I want to get back on
track here and do well. Everyone's goal is to tplay in the Premier League
and at the highest level. I have come here and my goal is to get West Ham
back there and that is what I am looking to do."
Baldock is eager to take his place in an attack-minded side boasting quality
throughout the lineup. "It's exciting times ahead. I think they complement
my game and I complement their game. We've all got stuff to offer each
other. "I'm looking to get in the team a little more regularly. I feel
ready. "I'm always looking to start. I've come from playing games regularly
so I'm hoping to continue that trend. "The team's doing well in the
formation it is playing and as long as they get the win I'll be happy. But
I've not really come here to warm the bench. "I've backed my own confidence
and my own ability to get into what I consider a Premier League club."
Carew is also looking to make a contribution, with the manager considering
whether to alternate him with the in-form Carlton Cole after a striking
contribution off the bench at the weekend. "I am enjoying my time and hoping
to be involved," he said. "We all want to play but we have lots of games,
everybody will get their time on the pitch. I am getting to full fitness and
hopefully I am going to play more and more. Everyone is looking forward to
Be the 12th man
Sports pyschologist Lee Richardson believes the fans have a huge part to
play this evening
You can be West Ham United's 12th man.When the Hammers last gained automatic
promotion to the Premier League in 1992/93, they won 16 - 69 per cent - of
their 23 home matches. Since that memorable campaign, West Ham have won just
45 per cent of their home league matches - 160 victories in 356 attempts. If
Sam Allardyce's players are to improve their win percentage this season and
emulate the outstanding achievements of 1992/93, they are going to need your
Club psychologist Lee Richardson - a former professional player and manager
himself - outlines just how each and every one of you can play an
influential role in West Ham's push for promotion.
Why is turning the Boleyn Ground into a noisy and intimidating fortress so
important? If we are going to achieve the percentage of home wins we are
going to need this season to be promoted - 69 per cent - then the players
are going to need your help. Home support is crucial in helping the players
by boosting their energy levels and internal psychological state. When you
are vociferous in your support, it affects our players positively and the
away players and supporters negatively. There are events in every game, both
positive and negative, that initiate a reaction from the crowd and that
reaction is passed on to the players straight away. Therefore, as many
positive reactions as possible to these events are the ideal situation.
How can the home fans achieve this at the Boleyn Ground?
West Ham United wants to be as good a club as it can be and to maximise its
potential. The aim this season has to be promotion back to the Premier
You can aid this by being as loud and supportive as possible, singing as
many songs as possible and forgiving any genuine mistakes that are made.
You have a massive role to play and we can prevail in the end if you play an
active part. If the players are to achieve their task - promotion - then
your support is really vital.
The fans can make the task easier.
We are all in this together.
We all want the same thing.
Dag & Red 4-4 Development Squad FT
Dominic Vose scores twice as Ian Hendon's side are held in an eight-goal
thriller at Victoria Road
DAGENHAM & REDBRIDGE XI v WEST HAM UNITED XI
DEVELOPMENT SQUAD MATCH
TUESDAY 27 SEPTEMBER 2011
Final score - Dagenham & Redbridge XI 4-4 West Ham United XI
94 mins - Moncur tries to lift a pass over the top for Potts to chase, but
it's too late as the referee blows for full-time.
92 mins - Dagenham restart with a throw and the referee tells the players we
have two minutes left. Lee is back on.
91 mins - Into added time and Lee needs the physio on. This has been as
breathless and entertaining a game as I've seen in ages. Both sets of
players are taking on water, but I'm not sure how much longer they'll be out
there. Surely not long?
88 mins - This game deserves a winner. I have no idea who that will be,
though... This game has been so stretched for about 15 minutes now. It would
be fair to say that the defences have not been on top.
85 mins - What a game! Turgott makes space for himself with a superb turn
inside the Dagenham D before curling a shot that cannons back off the
underside of the bar and bounces into the arms of Hogan.
84 mins - That should be 5-4 to Dagenham! Wearen fouls Osborn. The free-kick
is taken before the Irishman can get back into position and Maher gets in
behind. His volley flies wide.
83 mins - That could and maybe should be 5-4 to West Ham. Ilunga lifts a
perfect ball over the top for Piquionne. He is in on goal but elects to take
the ball first time, only to slice his volley high and wide of the left-hand
81 mins - GOAL! Ridiculous. It's 4-4! A cross from the left and Reed
challenges Cowler for the high ball. It drops to Osborn, who has the
simplest of tasks of finishing from eight yards. Cowler appeals for a
free-kick, but there is nothing doing.
80 mins - GOAL! My laptop might explode if this carries on... Potts launches
a superb diagonal ball for Vose to chase. He wins a throw. Vose takes it
quickly and exchanges passes with Moncur before cutting infield. Vose shoots
and the ball takes a deflection off Walsh before flying past Hogan.
79 mins - GOAL! Maher sends over a low free-kick and Thurgood is there to
divert the ball past Cowler. There is nothing the replacement goalkeeper
could do about that.
78 mins - Lee holds his head in confusion after being penalised for a foul
wide on the Dagenham right. A chance for the hosts to deliver another
77 mins - Prietos is replaced by Danny Potts, while Cowler comes on for
75 mins - If tonight's match at the Boleyn Ground is half as good as this
one, we're in for a decent night. Meanwhile, it looks like West Ham will
make a late change in goal, with Sam Cowler preparing to get a short run
out. There is nothing wrong with Peter Kurucz - I think it's just a case of
giving Cowler some time on the pitch.
73 mins - Ilunga's header drops to a Dagenham player and it is worked to
Reed. He is about 20 yards out as he spins away from Lee and shoots
left-footed, but the ball flies into the scoreboard behind the goal instead
of the net.
71 mins - Thurgood loses his marker inside the box and looks to have time
and space to pick his spot. The ex-Grays Athletic man looks up and curls his
shot about ten yards wide. Groans from the small crowd.
70 mins - Moses has left the building. He is replaced by the equally
marvellously-named Duran Reynalds.
69 mins - GOAL! Piquionne sends Montenegro clear with a clever reverse pass.
The Paraguayan shows good strength to hold off Rose before shooting
left-footed. Hogan parries and Vose follows up to stoop and head the ball
into the net from close-range.
66 mins - Also, if you are interested in coming to tonight's game and seeing
West Ham United potentially go top of the npower Championship table, tickets
will be available from the Alpari Stand and Priory Road ticket offices until
kick-off. Cash turnstiles will also be open from 6.15pm. Prices start from
£32 for Adults and £19 for Under-16s.
64 mins - Bingham is replaced by former Southend United captain Kevin Maher.
63 mins - Dagenham win a left-wing corner. It flies over, but Moses can't
part the West Ham defence to get his head to it. The ball is cleared.
61 mins - If you are coming along to the Boleyn Ground this evening, don't
forget to grab a matchday programme. Tonight's edition contains exclusive
interviews with Mark Noble, Abdoulaye Faye, Sam Allardyce, former world
darts champion Keith Deller and much, much more. Joint-Chairman David
Sullivan also speaks in his latest exclusive column. If you can't make it to
the big game, but would still like a copy of the programme, order yours
60 mins - Blair Turgott replaces Powell. The England Under-18 player goes to
the right wing, with Vose tucking inside alongside Moncur.
59 mins - Piquionne nutmegs Tomlin. The Daggers player didn't like that! He
swears - loudly.
58 mins - It's proper end to end stuff at the moment. Either side could
score at any moment.
56 mins - GOAL! Dagenham level things up through Tomlin. McCrory gets to the
byline and cuts a cross behind Kurucz and Tomlin has the simple task of
converting from about six yards.
55 mins - Piquionne is sent clear again, this time by Prietos. He is in on
goal, but slightly to the left. Piquionne tries to open his body up and
side-foot into the far corner, but it's too close to Hogan.
53 mins - The Victoria Road stadium is now bathed in sunshine. The murmur of
chatter among the scouts and other spectators around me makes the atmosphere
feel a bit like a cricket match.
51 mins - Dagenham win another corner. Bingham crosses and Kurucz catches at
the near post.
50 mins - Powell and Vose exchange a succession of one-twos in midfield. The
pair both possess really decent technique. Vose, for your information, is a
winger who likes to take people on and has very good close control. Powell
is a ball-playing midfielder with fantastic technique and a very good
47 mins - Dagenham have the first chance of the second half, but Thurgood
can't find the target with his low shot. It goes behind for a corner. The
first ball is cleared behind, but when Bingham crosses for a second time,
the header from Walsh flies wide.
46 mins - After a ten or eleven minute break for half-time, we're back
underway here. Thankfully, the sun is coming out!
Half-time score - Dagenham & Redbridge XI 1-2 West Ham United XI
46 mins - Right on 45 minutes and the half-time whistle is blown.
44 mins - Green's low cross is cut out by Ilunga and West Ham build
patiently. After a decent passage of pass and move, the ball is worked to
Prietos by Vose. The trialist tries a curler, but it's off-target.
39 mins - Green misses an absolute sitter. A cross from the right-back Rose
finds him completely unmarked six yards out. He has the goal gaping, save
for Kurucz in the middle of it, but blazes his volley a yard over the top.
36 mins - GOAL! Quality goal from the Hammers. Vose wins a free-kick for
handball and takes it instantly to Montenegro. He collects in-stride before
releasing Piquionne. The Frenchman holds off his marker before expertly
finishing past Hogan with his right foot.
35 mins - Wearen is penalised for a foul about 35 yards out. Tomlin delivers
another superb free-kick into the West Ham box. Ilunga and Moses go for the
ball, but neither makes sufficient contact and the ball dribbles behind.
32 mins - Now Dagenham need to make a change as Crawford hobbles off and
Osborn is on in his place.
31 mins - Moncur is penalised for a foul just outside the West Ham box. Rose
steps up and thunders a rising shot past the wall and, thankfully, past the
30 mins - Prietos, a trialist, comes on for Fanimo and will play wide on the
28 mins - Fanimo needs the physio on before walking to the touchline. I
think he might be replaced.
25 mins - Green's pace is causing problems. He comes forward again and
shoots. The ball takes a slight deflection and goes out for a corner. The
Hammers clear their lines through Montenegro and go on the counter. Again,
Piquionne is the man who is sent clear. He cuts in from the right and tries
to pick out Moncur with a low cross, but it's cut out. Corner. The ball is
cleared as far as Montenegro, but his volley flies well wide.
24 mins - It's all happening. Green gets down the left and sends over a
delicious cross fro Reed to attack, but he cannot get the necessary
connection on his header and the ball goes out for a goal kick.
23 mins - Great stuff from Kurucz, who is out in a flash after Lee and
Wearen had allowed Tomlin to burst through the middle. The Hungarian spreads
himself and makes a fine save. The ball rebounds out to a Dagenham player,
but Wearen nicks it and finds Vose. He feeds Piquionne and the striker is
through. He does a quick step-over before firing a powerful left-foot shot
21 mins - Montenegro works back well to defend a Dagenham throw and is a bit
unfortunate when his block goes behind for a corner. Moses wins the battle
but his header flies wide of the far post. He's a big bloke is Moses and
will have to be watched at future set pieces.
19 mins - Much better possession football from the Hammers leads to a foul
on Vose about 30 yards out on the right. Fanimo trots across and takes it
left-footed, but his low free-kick is cut out before it can reach Piquionne.
15 mins - Driver does well twice in ten seconds, heading clear a right-wing
cross before making a fine block to deny Crawford. Dagenham aren't done,
though, and Bingham rises high to flash a header just past the far post.
13 mins - Dagenham respond immediately. Right-back Rose gets forward and
shoots from an angle. The ball flashes low past the near post. The home side
are threatening though, as left-back McCrory's low cross is well handled by
11 mins - GOAL! As if by magic...! Piquionne collects a square pass from
Moncur, makes five yards and shoots from 25. The ball takes a nick off a
defender and Hogan cannot hold on. Montenegro has followed up as all good
forwards do and clips the ball over the keeper before smashing it into the
roof of the net.
11 mins - Vose is involved again there, collecting a lay-off from
Montenegro. The Paraguayan has looked lively so far, making some really
8 mins - Piquionne breaks down the right touchline and wins a corner. Fanimo
takes it left-footed, but it's too high for everyone and flies out on the
7 mins - West Ham have their first proper attack, with Fanimo heavily
involved. Vose collects possession and runs at the back four, but he loses
the ball. Dagenham come forward and the ball breaks to Crawford, who shoots
from 25 yards. It is easy for Kurucz.
5 mins - Formation-wise, Driver and Ilunga are the full-backs, with Wearen
and Lee inside them. Powell and Moncur are in central midfield, with Vose
wide right, Fanimo wide left. Piquionne and Montenegro are up front.
4 mins - Ilunga throws in to Moncur. He comes infield from the left before
finding Piquionne. The Frenchman tries to flick the ball through for
Montenegro, but goalkeeper Hogan is out smartly to collect.
2 mins - GOAL! The hosts lead. A Crawford cross from the right is high and
draws both Wearen and Driver to challenge Reed in the air. The ball drops,
bounces and Green shapes well before volleying past Kurucz from about 12
1 min - Ilunga curls a long pass over the top for Piquionne to chase. He is
goalside of the defence, but it's because he is offside.
12.05pm - We are now happily ready to kick-off. Dagenham do so, shooting
towards the Marcus James Stand to my left.
12.03pm - We look all set to go aside from one major issue... There is no
sign of the match officials!
11.58am - West Ham, of course, visited Victoria Road for a pre-season
friendly on 26 July, running out 1-0 winners over the League Two side.
Carlton Cole scored the only goal of the game that evening. Two of
Dagenham's starters that night, Tomlin and Bingham, start this afternoon,
while Alex Osborn was on the bench.
11.55am - Assistant manager Neil McDonald, first-team coach Wally Downes and
goalkeeper coach Martyn Margetson are all here to keep an eye on the club's
young charges. Frederic Piquionne will be eager to impress, as he will be
available for Saturday's trip to Crystal Palace following his three-match
Good morning and welcome to Victoria Road for the first of today's two live
text updates - the second of course being this evening's npower Championship
visit of Ipswich Town to the Boleyn Ground.
For now, though, our focus is on Ian Hendon's development squad and the
headline news is the return from injury of Hungarian goalkeeper Peter Kurucz
The pair join experienced duo Herita Ilunga and Frederic Piquionne - who is
ruled out of tonight's first-team fixture through suspension - new boy Brian
Montenegro and young professionals Callum Driver, Eoin Wearen, George Moncur
in a squad that mixes youth with older players.
Scholars Matthias Fanimo and Kenzer Lee are also involved following the
youth team's fine start to the FA Premier Academy League season.
Dagenham & Redbridge XI: Hogan, Rose, McCrory, Moses (Reynalds 70), Walsh,
Bingham (Maher 64), Tomlin, Thurgood, Reed, Crawford (Osborn 32), Green
West Ham United XI: Kurucz (Cowler 77), Driver, Ilunga, Wearen, K.Lee,
Moncur, Vose, Powell (Turgott 60), Fanimo (Prietos 30, Potts 77),
Allardyce: a work in progress
Filed: Tuesday, 27th September 2011
By: Staff Writer
Sam Allardyce says that he is pleased with the way his squad have gelled in
the opening weeks of the season - but insists that there is more to come.
Allardyce, speaking ahead of tonight's Championship clash with Ipswich Town
- United's second home game within three days - admitted that his side were
not quite there in terms of being a fully cohesive unit, but revealed that
he was more than satisfied with the way the opening eight games of the
league campaign had gone. "After the disappointment of the first game here
[against Cardiff] we've picked up and got better and better, as we get to
know each other better," he told Talksport. "All the new players are
settling in - in fact eight of the players who played on Saturday weren't
here last season. "I'm really pleased with what they've delivered up to now.
I still don't think we're fully integrated as a team yet because we're all
so new together and of course that takes time. Winning football matches
breeds confidence and that makes it easier and helps the players to move
forward quickly. "But we seem to be pulling together very well. Results are
of course all-important to build confidence and that's exactly how we're
looking at the moment - very, very confident."
Looking ahead to tonight's game against 13th-placed Ipswich, Allardyce -
who, for the first time, is having to deal with injury concerns in his squad
- insisted that despite Town's erratic form they will prove to be yet
another stern test. "Paul [Jewell] has been there for a long time and put
together a good side," he asserted. "There's lots of experience in the team;
there's quite a few players he's got there who've played Premier League
football, so they'll know what it's all about. I saw them beat Coventry
comfortably; it'll be an interesting contest. "We've got a couple of
injuries for tonight so one or two of the squad players will come in and
play. That'll be interesting to see whether they'll keep it at the levels
we've seen up to now."
* In other news, Ian Hendon's development squad drew 4-4 with Dagenham &
Redbridge this lunchtime. On target for the Hammers were Brian Montenegro,
Freddie Piquionne and Dominic Vose (2).
West Ham Utd: Kurucz (Cowler 77), Driver, Ilunga, Wearen, K.Lee, Moncur,
Vose, Powell (Turgott 60), Fanimo (Prietos 30, Potts 77), Montenegro,
Dagenham & Redbridge XI: Hogan, Rose, McCrory, Moses (Reynalds 70), Walsh,
Bingham (Maher 64), Tomlin, Thurgood, Reed, Crawford (Osborn 32), Green
Shaka: Redknapp killed Joey Cole
Filed: Tuesday, 27th September 2011
By: Staff Writer
Shaka Hislop has claimed that his former manager at West Ham, Harry
Redknapp, is responsible for the failure of Joe Cole to live up to early
hopes. Speaking in the tabloids today, Hislop - who worked under Redknapp at
the Boleyn from 1998 to 2001 - suggested that his former boss' failure to
give Cole a proper role in his West Ham team contributed to the lack of
discipline that has bugged the former England international all his career.
"Harry kind of liked Joe just to express himself, and we'd play around him,
or around Joe's unpredictability," he said. "But encouraging him to be
himself didn't help him. "Talented though he is, when you don't have the
ball he's got to give you something else. Everything about his game on that
side, when your team don't have possession, he simply wasn't good enough.
Harry did not help him in that respect; I don't think he was coached in that
Cole, who moved to French club Lille on a season-long loan during the summer
transfer window scored his first goal for his new club last weekend. Yet
Hislop insisted he could have enjoyed a far more glittering career had
Redknapp utilised him better. "Harry wants players to come and just play
naturally and he would fill the gaps around that," he continued. "It was the
same with Paolo Di Canio. He would be allowed to do exactly what he wants
and we would fill the gaps around him. "It worked – you can't take that away
from Harry. But in Joe's case, in terms of stepping up that extra level, it
held him back. I know Joe well, I like him a lot and I hope he rediscovers
his form. But you have to bring more than just that type of natural,
Cole made his first team debut for West Ham at the age of just 17 against
Manchester United in January 1999 and soon became a firm favourite with the
Boleyn faithful. He was made captain of the team in December 2002 by Glenn
Roeder, but failed to prevent his side dropping through the trap door the
following May. He was eventually sold to Chelsea for £6.6million in August
2003 after West Ham had been relegated to the Championship the previous May.
Stech on trial
Filed: Tuesday, 27th September 2011
By: Staff Writer
Young goalkeeper Marek Stech has joined Burnley on trial. The 21-year-old
Czech goalkeeper was hailed by former goalkeeping coach Ludo Miklosko as his
country's potential successor to Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech upon joining
West Ham back in 2006 at the age of just 16. However five years on, West Ham
are preparing to part company with the 6'3 stopper who has refused to sign a
new contract due to his desire for first team football. Stech - who is
currently fourth in the pecking order at the Boleyn behind Rob Green, Peter
Kurucz and Ruud Boffin - has been unable to play for the club in rcent
months as any future appearances will trigger an additional payment to the
player's former club Sparta Prague. With West Ham being unwilling to pay a
further instalment due to the player's refusal to agree a new contract,
Stech has been left in limbo; his most recent appearance for the club came
way back in October of last year, in the 3-1 Carling Cup win over Stoke.
Having already spent a week with Ipswich, Stech is now trying his luck at
Burnley who recently signed his former Academy team mates Junior Stanislas
and Zavon Hines. He will feature for the Clarets in their Central League
fixture against Oldham later this afternoon.
Mark Noble well aware of the extra factor
27 Sep 2011
Mark Noble says West Ham must get used to visiting teams raising their game
as they prepare to host Ipswich tonight. With West Ham having been a
Premier League club only four months ago, Noble believes opponents see his
side as a notable scalp. As a result, teams are trying to frustrate West Ham
such as on Saturday when Peterborough limited the hosts to a 1-0 win with
Noble scoring the only goal from the penalty spot. "We are fully aware that
every team who come here will put that little bit extra in because we are
probably one of the teams to beat in the Championship this season," he said.
"We need to counter that and it's not always going to be flowing football.
If we can come away with another 15 one-nil wins this season, I'll take
Regardless of how their opponents play, Noble knows there are areas where
West Ham can improve and says they need to capitalise on the fact they have
some big men in their squad. "There were spells against Peterborough when we
played really well and other times when we could have done a lot better -
kept the ball which would have made it easier for us," said the midfielder.
"We also have to improve on converting those chances, getting on the end of
cross after cross. We have one of the biggest teams in the League this year
so we need to do better at being on the end of those crosses."
Tonight's match sees Lee Bowyer return to Upton Park and Noble believes West
Ham must keep their former midfielder quiet if they are to push even nearer
to top spot in the Championship. The 34-year-old moved to Portman Road on a
free transfer from Birmingham during the summer and is still a potential
match winner, according to Noble. "We're going to have to look out for Lee,"
he said. "He's still making those forward runs into the opposition penalty
area, arriving late and he always seems to score against us. "They have lots
of experience in their side - Lee, Grant Leadbitter, Keith Andrews, Jimmy
Bullard, Michael Chopra - I still think they will be up there at the end of
the season. "They've had one or two disappointing defeats but they've been
better recently, beating Coventry and then drawing at Middlesbrough which
was a good point. "It's a big game for us tonight, under the lights and,
hopefully, a good atmosphere."
Noble has fond memories of Ipswich, having spent three months on loan at the
club in 2006 and during his stay there he scored his first goal in
"I loved my time at Ipswich. Jim Magilton was the manager at the time and I
loved the way he wanted me to play," said the 24-year-old. "He was brilliant
with me. I enjoyed it so much I didn't want it to end really but I came back
to West Ham and got in the first team so it was a great year for me."
Ipswich manager Paul Jewell believes West Ham have the quality and quantity
to finish in the top two at the end of the season. "West Ham and Leicester
probably have the two best squads in the Championship," he said. "West Ham
had strength and power right through their team. Although they've sold one
or two players they've also kept players like the England goalkeeper Robert
Green and striker Carlton Cole, who is also in the international squad."
EXCLUSIVE - West Ham's McCartney: I should never have left Hammers
Dave Evans, West Ham Correspondent
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
West Ham defender George McCartney admits that he should have stayed at
Upton Park in 2008 rather than return to Sunderland. Hammers defender George
McCartney has admitted for the first time that he should never have left
West Ham after suffering a nightmare three years with Sunderland. The
30-year-old is back at Upton Park on a season-long loan and has so far
impressed both manager Sam Allardyce and the Hammers fans with some
consistently solid displays at left back.
McCartney's departure from West Ham in a £4.5million deal back in the summer
of 2008 prompted then manager Alan Curbishley to quit the club and both
their careers have gone downhill since that point. And the Northern Ireland
international defender has confessed that he should have stayed at Upton
Park. "I don't know what went wrong at Sunderland," he admitted. "It's hard
to say, but looking back I probably shouldn't have left West Ham. "I had
great times here and it is a great club and it is something I will always
McCartney played 71 games in two seasons at West Ham and secured second spot
behind Robert Green in the Hammer of the Year award in his final season at
the club. However, in three years at the Stadium of Light, he has made just
46 appearances and never got close to reaching the heights he managed at
"I'm not really making excuses, but over the first two years at Sunderland I
had some bad injuries and needed a couple of operations," he explained. "So
I had a loss of form, my confidence was low and I could never really get it
McCartney was shipped out on loan to Leeds United last term, but it proved
to be an inauspicious time in Yorkshire as the Elland Road club missed out
on the play-offs.
"After being at Leeds last season, coming back down here has given me a new
lease of life really," said the full back. "It has given me the confidence
to kick on again and play football somewhere I am happy and happy to be out
on the pitch every week. "Thankfully the chairman and the manager have given
me a second chance, otherwise I would never have come. Now it is up to me to
repay the faith they have shown in me by performing every week."
He has certainly impressed since replacing the hapless Herita Ilunga in the
side. He is only on loan at the moment, but he is hoping that West Ham and
Sunderland can sort out a more permanent deal. "Of course I want a permanent
deal," insisted McCartney. "It's only a season-long loan at the moment, but
fingers crossed we get promoted and I can have a good, consistent season and
then it if it permanent, it will be a great opportunity for me."
West Ham boss: Don't mention the 4-5-1
Dave Evans, West Ham Correspondent
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
When Saturday's game with Peterborough is confined to the archives of
history and largely forgotten – which will not take long – then three points
and a clean sheet may well look impressive. But in truth this was uninspired
and unadventurous stuff and though it was a victory, just how long the West
Ham fans remain satisfied with simply that is uncertain. "We're obviously
delighted," said manager Sam Allardyce after the 1-0 win. "We've got three
valuable points, but the only disappointment is the fact that our approach
play and opportunities to get more goals failed us today."
It is perhaps not hard to see why. When a lot of your approach play is to
hoist the ball up to a lone striker and then fail to properly support him,
it is always going to be difficult to put visiting teams under pressure. Any
mentions of 4-5-1 however are met with annoyance from the boss. "We're
scoring lots of goals with 4-3-3. And if you mention 4-5-1 again! It's
4-3-3!" exclaimed the manager. "You only have to look at the match stats.
You can look at it and say it's 4-5-1, but how many times did we get into
their box? The disappointing thing for me wasn't just that we didn't score
more, but that we didn't hit the target more often. We haven't made their
keeper work enough. "I think eventually we'll get to a 4-4-2 here and there,
but when you're fourth in the league and haven't lost for seven matches,
it's difficult to change a system that is working extremely well for where
we are at the moment."
That's us told then. It is certainly true that the system works well away
from Upton Park, where three wins and a draw along with nine goals speak for
But at home? Against Peterborough? Is that really a system that needs to be
adopted? Is that really the West Ham way?
Many would argue that the West Ham way has not been seen at Upton Park for
years anyway. That the West Ham way of the last two or three seasons was to
lose too many home games and to a large extent that is true.
But that was in the Premier League. This is surely different. West Ham are a
team in the Championship with a squad that is good enough for the top flight
and yet there is no swagger, no real class being shown by the team when they
play at home.
Perhaps we are making too much of it. After all the be all and end all of
this season is promotion and it really doesn't matter the way in which the
Hammers go about it, as long as they achieve it.
"You only have to look at what gets you promoted automatically and two
points or better does that," said Allardyce. "There can be a freak season
where you need more, but generally if you're hitting those targets – and
we're one point ahead of that ratio – that's a massive boost. "That will
make life so much easier when, somewhere down the line, we don't get the
result we're looking for. If we've got that cushion, then you can pick up
from there without a disappointing result costing you too much."
The bookies and most fans are confident that West Ham will be back in the
Premier League next season. And in this day and age, it seems that is the
only thing that matters.
Redknapp should have restrained Cole, claims former West Ham keeper Hislop
By LAURA WILLIAMSON
Last updated at 10:53 AM on 27th September 2011
Shaka Hislop believes Joe Cole's career faltered at Chelsea and Liverpool
because Spurs boss Harry Redknapp let him enjoy too much freedom at West
Ham. The former Hammers goalkeeper reckons indulging Cole's creativity held
the player back because he struggled when his team were not in possession.
Hislop, 42, said: 'Harry kind of liked Joe just to express himself, and we'd
play around him, or around Joe's unpredictability. 'Encouraging him to be
himself didn't help him. When you sign him you identify that, talented
though he is, when we don't have the ball he's got to give us something
else. 'Everything about his game on that side, when your team don't have
possession, he simply wasn't good enough. Harry did not help him in that
respect. 'But that is exactly like Harry. He wants players to come and just
play naturally and he would fill the gaps around that. 'He allowed (Gareth)
Bale to express himself last season and it was the same when we were at West
Ham with (Paolo) Di Canio. He would be allowed to do exactly what he wants
and we would fill the gaps around him. 'And it worked – you can't take that
away from Harry. But in Joe's case, in terms of stepping up that extra
level, it held him back a bit.'
Cole, who has joined Lille on a season-long loan from Liverpool, scored his
first goal for five months in a 1-1 draw with Lorient last weekend and will
face Trabzonspor in the Champions League on Tuesday night. Hislop, now a
pundit on ESPNsoccernet's Press Pass, believes the French club is the ideal
place for Cole, 29, to learn how to contribute when his team do not have the
ball. He said: 'He's in the mode of player of (Glenn) Hoddle and (Chris)
Waddle, who both went out to France and did well. Cole's the same type of
player. 'I know Joe well, I like him a lot. We were at West Ham together and
I hope he rediscovers his form. '(But) you have to bring more than just that
type of natural, unbridled ability. You have to be tactically aware and
contribute so much more than when you're on the ball. This is an opportunity
for Joe to learn that, but still does what comes naturally to him. 'In
England, results are so important. It's a steep learning curve and you're
not given much time, either. So maybe he'll get that at Lille. 'I don't
think he got that at West Ham. Certainly not under Harry. I don't think he
was coached in that way.'
Sam: Trio pushing for starts
West Ham manager Sam Allardyce admits his summer signings are beginning to
give him a selection dilemma at Upton Park.
Last Updated: 27/09/11 at 10:49 Post Comment
Allardyce has stuck with largely the same team since he took over at Upton
Park with only the odd injury, suspension or sale forcing his hand. But
David Bentley, Papa Bouba Diop and Sam Baldock are pushing to be involved
and, with the games coming thick and fast, Allardyce is ready to rotate his
squad. "It's nice to have a winning side and that doesn't cause you too many
problems from a selection point of view," he said. "The subs have had
chances. Papa is ready now and Sam Baldock keeps starting at me saying 'when
are you going to put me on'. "It is a difficult thing to change when you are
winning games but it is one I have got to have a serious look at and see if
I can make the team that bit better by making a change. I'll be sticking my
neck on the line because I am sure if I get it wrong the fans will let me
Keeper Stech In Reserve Team
Posted on: Tue 27 Sep 2011
Czech trialist Marek Stech, 21, will feature in goal for the Clarets in
today's Central League Reserve team game away to Oldham. The Czech Republic
U21 international is currently on the books at West Ham, where he played
three Carling Cup games last season. Goalkeeper Stech plays behind a young
Clarets side at the Chapel Road training complex (2pm KO).
Burnley line up as follows: Stech, Williams, Lynch, Harvey, Coleman, Love,
Wilson, Hewitt, McCartan, Knowles, Lazaar.
Subs: Errington, Cook, Evans, Mullin, Conlan
Town's ex-Hammers plan to silence Upton Park crowd
By Dave Gooderham
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
EAST End boys Lee Bowyer and Jimmy Bullard have urged their Town team mates
to use the "hostile" Upton Park crowd to their advantage. Improving Ipswich
Town tonight go to Championship favourites West Ham looking to build on a
run of just one defeat in four matches. And they will be able to call on
some ex-Hammers in their camp with both Bowyer and Bullard boyhood West Ham
fans – the former spending two-and-half seasons at the club. Having seen the
atmosphere generated by home fans, both positive and negative, Bowyer said:
"The crowd definitely let you know when they are not happy so if we can keep
them quiet in the first half, and maybe nick a goal, we can see how things
And Bullard, who was signed by Harry Redknapp but never made an appearance
during his three years at West Ham, added: "West Ham is a hostile place.
"When it is going well, it is going well. But in that sort of stadium, the
start means a lot and if you can get a good one, you can dictate the game.
It is a great place to go and play football and there will be a great
atmosphere under the lights."
The message was backed up by Blues boss Paul Jewell who said: "It's going to
be tough because they've got a top class manager and arguably the best team
in the ivision, but our job is to go there and make the atmosphere as quiet
and as edgy as possible. "But it's a game I want my players to embrace. We
are going there looking to get a result, not simply enjoy the occasion."
Born in East Ham, there will be something of split loyalties for the Bullard
family with the midfielder admitting tonight's match divides his camp. But
the 32-year-old, who believes he is now reaching full match fitness,
insisted: "West Ham is a great club but I won't be supporting them tomorrow.
I play for Ipswich and hopefully we are going to get three points."
Exclusive - Allardyce warns rivals: Best still to come from West Ham
Tuesday, September 27
Sam Allardyce has warned West Ham's rivals there is much more to come from
his side as they push for an instant return to the Premier League. After
losing at home to Cardiff in their opening game of the season, the Hammers
have gone on a seven match unbeaten run and a win tonight at home to Ipswich
could see them go top of the Championship. But Allardyce insists his side
have not even hit top gear yet, telling the Sports Breakfast: "I'm pleased
with what the players have delivered so far, but we still can get better. I
still don't think we are fully integrated as a team.
"Eight of the players who played on Saturday were not here last season in
the Premier League. But winning matches breeds confidence and that makes it
easier, which helps the players move forward." The Hammers boss, however,
accepts it will not be an easy task leading the club to promotion this term.
"I think it will be tight this season, there's an awful lot of teams
striving to get into the Premier League," he added. "They've set their stall
out this season to put squads together to achieve the ultimate, which is
promotion to the best league in the world. "It's interesting to see sides
that came up from League One, Southampton and Brighton, doing so well this
season. It shows the gap between League One and the Championship is not as
great as the gap between the Championship and Premier League."