Thursday, February 6

Daily WHUFC News - 6th February 2014

The Big Interview - Carlton Cole
Carlton Cole is keen for the Hammers to capitalise on their recent results
and move up the table

Carlton Cole says West Ham United are focused on staying in the Barclays
Premier League after picking up two great results last week. Two different,
but equally committed, performances against Chelsea and then Swansea City
earned the Hammers a total of four points in the space of four days,
including a first home win of 2014. As Sam Allardyce's side prepare to play
Aston Villa on Saturday, Carlton Cole is hoping the team can put together a
run of good results.

Carlton, how have two great results, a draw against Chelsea and then three
points against Swansea City, lifted morale around the Club?

CC: "Obviously the boys have been buzzing but it's important that we focus
on the next game now. We had a team meeting and the gaffer knows that we
have to do more if we want to stay in this league. We've set our targets now
and all the boys know what we need to do to stay in it."

Have the two results lifted a bit of pressure off the players?

CC: "Wins will take a lot of pressure off in any situation. Now that we
almost have a fully fit squad, apart from Joey O'Brien who has to have an
operation, we've got more options available and players coming back so it's
all positive for the Club."

The 2-0 win against Swansea on Saturday was the Club's first home win of
2014, how important was it to get that first win in front of the home fans?

CC: "It was brilliant. The crowd were amazing that day and it was just an
unfortunate situation that led to Andy Carroll getting sent-off at the end
of the day. By the end of the match we pulled through and deserved to win
the match."

How good is it for you to see an almost fully fit squad and only one or two
still in the treatment room?

CC: "When you see injured players in the treatment room and in the gym when
they can't come out with you, you're always asking them 'When are you coming
back?' and it's obviously frustrating for them so you stop asking them after
a while. It's good for morale when players come back and it gives everyone a
boost when you see your colleagues coming back to fitness. When they get
back into the squad it's good because you know what they can bring to the

The Club signed a couple of new players in the January transfer window, how
have they fitted in so far?

CC: "Their English is not quite up to scratch but their English is better
than my Italian so I can't complain about that! We've got a few other young
signings as well who are going to be looking to push for first team places,
coming off the bench or starting. We've got competition for places all round

Have the new signings freshened things up and helped provide more
competition for places?

CC: "Yeah, definitely. When you've got competition for places you want to go
out there and keep your place if you're starting. That's what football's
about and that's what will get us the results that we need."

Aston Villa are the opposition on Saturday and you spent a season on loan
there earlier in your career, how do you remember your time with the

CC: "I've got fond memories. I made good friends, the kit-man over there has
always been a pal of mine but that was when I was much younger! Ten years
ago now I think! Things have changed since then. They've done really well
and maintained their Premier League status since I left there so they've
done exceptionally well and they have some good young players coming

The bottom half of the table is so tight that if we beat them on Saturday we
can drag them towards the relegation battle, is that the aim?

CC: "No one seems to be safe from 12th downwards. We're just focusing on
trying to get to that tenth spot, that's our aim. If we can get there then
we've had a successful season."

A good result against Aston Villa would set us up nicely for two crucial
home games later in the month wouldn't it?

CC: "We've got two crucial home games coming up against Norwich City and
Southampton but we have to take it one game at a time. Hopefully we can go
into every game feeling positive and knowing that we can get the result that
our work-rate deserves. We'll try and bag a few goals and hopefully we can
carry on keeping clean sheets."

Take them to the cleaners
Filed: Wednesday, 5th February 2014
By: Staff Writer

West Ham United are set to call upon the expertise of a leading QC to
investigate the FA's decision to uphold Howard Webb's decision to dismiss
Andy Carroll against Swansea. Carroll, 25 last month, was set off last
weekend after the theatrical antics of Swansea's Chico Flores led Webb to
issue the England striker with a red card, despite having barely made
contact with the Spaniard who fell to the ground clutching his face in mock

As a result Carroll was handed a three-match ban for violent conduct - a
decision that was upheld to the dismay of the vast majority of football
followers - by a three-man FA adjudicating panel yesterday. But far from
accepting the decision, West Ham are now reported to be seeking the advice
of a leading barrister - Lord David Pannick, according to today's Telegraph
- in order to examine the possibility of challenging a decision that left
most pundits and commentators incredulous.

With just 14 games of the Premier League season left to play - and with the
Hammers still stuck in the relegation zone - losing Carroll for circa 20 per
cent of those matches could prove catastrophic. Very much in West Ham's
thoughts is the abominable 2008 decision by Lord Griffiths to award
Sheffield United in excess of £25million damages following the Tevez debacle
- a sum that the club only finished paying off last year.

West Ham feel that Swansea, who like West Ham are involved in the relegation
battle, have gained an unfair advantage as the result of blatant cheating by
Flores - which even Swans manager Michael Laudrup, who parted company with
the club last night, admitted. Having lost an appeal that it appears they
were confident of winning, the Hammers will now investigate the FA's legal
procedure in order to ascertain whether it is possible to achieve justice by
alternative means - just as Sheffield United did six years ago.

By Sean Whetstone 5 Feb 2014 at 11:18
West Ham Till I Die

According to the Telegraph and the Sun West Ham are appointing a top
barrister in a bid to challenge the FA after their appeal against Andy
Carroll's red card was rejected.

It is claimed West ham are appointing Lord David Pannick, one of the
country's leading barristers, to explore every possible legal avenue to
judge whether they can challenge the procedure. Lord David Pannick is a
non-party-political member of the House of Lords.

Lord David Pannick QC was chosen by Sheffield United to sit on an
arbitration hearing panel on June 18th 2007 in an attempt to reinstate them
in the Premier League over the Tevez affair. It was that panel who ruled in
favor of Sheffield United which led to the out of court settlement believed
to be £18.1million which we only finished paying last year.

His past clients include a well known West Ham fan -The Queen after winning
an injunction in the High Court to restrain The Daily Mirror from publishing
further allegations about her home life by a reporter who had gained
employment as a footman. He also represented the Football Association's
appeal against Wayne Rooney's three-match Euro 2012 ban.

The last sentence of the FA statement yesterday makes it clear "The decision
of an Independent Regulatory Commission in relation to a claim of wrongful
dismissal is final and binding on all parties and is not subject to appeal."

Evening Update: The Telegraph say West Ham have threatened to take legal
action against the Football Association unless they agree to grant Andy
Carroll a formal hearing over his three-match suspension. West Ham have
stepped up their row with the FA after Carroll's controversial ban by
demanding a resolution by Friday, insisting they are prepared to take their
case to the High Court if the request is rejected. With the assistance of
Lord David Pannick QC West Ham sent a letter to the FA on Wednesday
outlining their frustration at the procedure which has resulted in their
record signing being ruled out for three games.West Ham are ready to take
unprecedented legal action against the governing body if they refuse to
allow Carroll another chance to pursue wrongful dismissal.
The Daily Mail claim "Were the governing body to show unwillingness then
West Ham will go to the High Court seeking an injunction ordering Carroll's
suspension be lifted until an arbitration panel can be set up, freeing him
for the match."

By Tony Hanna 5 Feb 2014 at 07:55
West Ham Till I Die

It's been a big couple of weeks for our beloved Hammers and fellow
supporters. In what has been a very disappointing season so far, the past
fortnight has seen some glimmers of hope. On the pitch we saw a valiant
effort to deny Chelsea and to steal a point, much to the disgust of the
theatrical Jose Mourinho. The team followed that up with a gutsy win against
Swansea in a match we were comfortably in control of until Andy Carroll's
red card. Another half hour of backs to the wall defence from Collins,
Tomkins and Co ensured our lead stayed in tact, despite the numerical
disadvantage. If you were asked two weeks ago whether you thought we would
take four points from those two games I think most would have replied "very
probably not!"

On the injury front things seem to be improving. Andy was firing on all
cylinders against Swansea but of course will now be sorely missed for the
next three games due to his suspension. James Collins and James Tomkins are
both back to their best after recent injuries and suspensions, and of course
Winston Reid is now back in the fold and ready to go. That in itself will
give Big Sam a nice headache – Collins and Tomkins have been excellent in
the past two games since their return, which poses the question as to
whether Winston will break straight back into the line up? I guess he will,
but it will be a tough call after two clean sheets in a row.

Then of course we have finally seen the back of the fiasco that is the
January transfer window. There are a lot of things wrong in the professional
game today, and the transfer window would certainly make my list of "changes
required!" Agents have caused enough problems in the game without giving
them a "deadline" to further their money grabbing antics. For us the window
saw several players come to Upton Park in loan deals. Most notably were the
two Italians Antonio Nocerino and Marco Borriello and then of course
Columbian fullback Pablo Armero. How much we see of any of these three is
anyone's guess? At the moment it would seem hard for Sam to make any
unforced changes to a side with four points and two clean sheets from the
past two games. Who would have thought a few weeks ago that Matt Taylor
would be doing such a good job in central midfield? And on another positive
note, the emergence of Adrian as first choice goalkeeper is a real plus. For
a player with only seven first team appearances to his name, he has
certainly already built a great rapport with the fans.

The month of February loomed large for many Hammer fans as games against
Swansea, Villa, Norwich and Southampton would surely give a true indicator
as to whether we will be playing Premier League football next season or not?
Andy Carroll's 3 match suspension will be a big blow for our hopes – you
only have to see how he brought our misfiring captain Kevin Nolan into the
game against Swansea. Luck and good management on further injuries and
suspensions will play a pivotal part for the remainder of the season, as
will what impact the new loan players will make when given the chance.
Whilst the fixture list after this month does look tough, in my view there
are only two games that we will go into expecting nothing – away to Arsenal
and City. But there again, who would have thought a point at Chelsea was on
the cards?

Neil Warnock blasts FA over Andy Carroll red card decision saying they are
protecting Howard Webb
Feb 05, 2014 12:20 By Eliot Rothwell
The Mirror

Former Leeds manager Neil Warnock has said the FA are determined to protect
Howard Webb by allowing West Ham striker Andy Carroll's recent red card to
stand. Carroll was sent off in West Ham's victory over Swansea, following a
tussle with Swans defender Chico Flores. Warnock has suggested that the FA
are keen to protect the foremost English official due to his selection for
the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. "Deep down Howard Webb will know he got it
wrong," Warnock told the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast on talkSPORT. "They've
upheld it because he's our top referee and he's going to the World Cup and
they don't want to embarrass him."

The 65-year-old criticised the FA committee charged with making the final
decision on the red card, questioning their knowledge of the game. "I think
it's totally wrong," he said. "Everyone on that FA committee – and no-one
knows who they are – has got away with murder. They obviously don't know the
game of football." Warnock also took exception to Chico Flores' reaction to
the tussle with Carroll, suggesting that the Swansea defender should face a
ban instead of the West Ham striker.

Chico Flores slates West Ham in Twitter rant
Hers Is The City

The Swansea City defender hit out at West Ham supporters after he received a
series of abusive tweets in relation to Andy Carroll's dismissal on
Swansea City defender Chico Flores came out on the front foot after verbal
abuse from West Ham United supporters for his role in Andy Carroll's
dismissal last weekend. Flores was hit around the head by Carroll's flailing
arm, before theatrically rolling around on the floor. Carroll was shown a
red card for the incident.
West Ham United appealed Andy Carroll's suspension, but an independent
commission acting on The FA's behalf concluded that there were no grounds
for appeal and rejected the club's claim that referee Howard Webb had made
"an obvious error". Carroll will now be unavailable for selection in West
Ham's upcoming Premier League fixtures with Aston Villa, Norwich City and

Following public criticism from pundits and supporters via social media
website Twitter, the Spaniard opted to issue a reply of his own to the
critics. In three tweets on Wednesday night, he hit back at West Ham United
fans, telling them that they should be worrying more about "the ugly way"
that their team play football. Flores also posted a short video of the
incident using mobile video app Vine.

Tweeting from his personal account - @ChicoFlores12, the defender commented:
"I'm a bit tired of the strong insults from the west Ham fans. Whoever
doesn't see the aggression in that action is blind."

"They should be more preoccupied with the ugly way their team play football:
always making very long passes and never quick short passing."

"They should be worried about that before caring about such evident things."
"Ok West Ham 2 - 0 Swansea ... Swansea 24 Points West Ham 22 Points Hahaha
Smart !! Good luck ."

West Ham refuse to give up fight for Carroll to play at Villa, claiming
suspension should be overturned due to FA's alleged appeal bungle
PUBLISHED: 20:00, 5 February 2014 | UPDATED: 20:01, 5 February 2014
Daily Mail

West Ham United are refusing to concede defeat over Andy Carroll's red card
and have launched a bid to get him reinstated for their match at Aston
Villa on Saturday. A letter has been sent by the club to the Football
Association requesting they reconsider their decision to uphold the England
striker's red card for flailing an arm at Chico Flores. West Ham chiefs
believe the FA failed to follow the rules of their appeals process on two
specific counts and insist the red card handed out by Howard Webb should be
overturned on that basis. If the FA continue to back Webb's decision, and
Carroll's three-match ban, then West Ham will take their battle a step
further and push for an arbitration panel to hear their case tomorrow, in
time for the crunch game at Villa Park. Were the governing body to show
unwillingness then West Ham will go to the High Court seeking an injunction
ordering Carroll's suspension be lifted until an arbitration panel can be
set up, freeing him for the match. Renowned barrister Lord Pannick QC, who
has in the past represented the Queen in a privacy case as well as Wayne
Rooney and the British Olympic Committee in sporting contexts, has been
enlisted by the club for expert guidance. The lengths West Ham are prepared
to go to see Carroll's ban quashed illustrate the importance of the
25-year-old to their survival chances and the strength of feeling against
what Sam Allardyce called an 'injustice'. Flores was roundly criticised for
rolling on the floor holding his face even though Carroll's arm clipped the
top of his head. The FA are understood to stand by their process to date and
their statement on Tuesday which read: 'As stated in the Rules and
Regulations of The FA, an Independent Regulatory Commission must apply the
test of whether the decision to dismiss a player was 'an obvious error'.
Carlton Cole should play in Carroll's absence if West Ham's bid fails, while
Marco Borriello, on loan from Roma, is likely to feature after playing a
behind-closed-doors friendly against Southend on Tuesday.

Marco Borriello set to make West Ham debut at Aston Villa as club consider
legal challenge over Andy Carroll red card
Evening Standard
Published: 05 February 2014 Updated: 12:01, 05 February 2014

Marco Borriello looks likely to figure in West Ham's team at Aston Villa on
Saturday, after it was confirmed that Andy Carroll will serve a three-match
ban following his red card against Swansea. Carroll, who described the
Independent Tribunal's decision to uphold referee Howard Webb's decision to
dismiss the striker following an incident with Swansea's Chico Flores, as
'disgraceful' on Twitter, will miss the Villa match plus home games against
Norwich and Southampton. Borriello, on loan from Roma until the end of the
season, played in a behind-closed-doors match against Southend United
yesterday at the club's training ground, along with fellow Italian Antonio
Nocerino, who is on loan from AC Milan, plus Ricardo Vaz Te and Winston Reid
who are returning from injury. Carlton Cole is more likely to start at Villa
Park this weekend but Borriello could figure at some stage. West Ham manager
Sam Allardyce meanwhile, said he was "bitterly disappointed" by the
decision. "I'm going to have to talk to my chairmen before I say anything –
I'm that angry," he added. The Upton Park club are so incensed by the
rejection of their appeal against Carroll's red card that they are
considering appointing a top QC, crossbench peer Lord Pannick, to explore
the possibility of legally challenging the decision.


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