Monday, May 12

Daily WHUFC News - 12th May 2014

Hammers beaten as City claim title
Manchester City defeated West Ham United 2-0 at the Eithad Stadium to win
the Barclays Premier League

Manchester City 2-0 West Ham United
Barclays Premier League

West Ham United were unable to prevent Manchester City from sealing a second
Barclays Premier League title in three years, going down to a 2-0 defeat at
the Etihad Stadium on the final day of the 2013/14 season. The Hammers gave
a far better account of themselves than in their heavy Capital One Cup
semi-final defeat at the same venue in January, but City still found a way
to break them down. They had to wait until the 39th minute to open the
scoring, and once Samir Nasri's low drive arrowed into the corner the
destination of the championship was rarely in doubt. Vincent Kompany made
sure of their success with a second shortly after the restart to spark wild
celebrations among the home support. City came into the contest bearing the
weight of expectation on their shoulders, knowing just a point would be
enough to hand them the title again. They soon settled into a rhythm,
however, enjoying the lion's share of possession and keeping play in Hammers
territory. Before long, David Silva volleyed powerfully over the top from
inside the box and Sergio Aguero tested Adrian's handling with a low shot
from range. Adrian then had to be at his best to tip a 30-yard Aleksandar
Kolorov effort that looked destined for the top corner over the bar. The
Hammers were defending well and in numbers, and for all City's passing and
probing around the Hammers' box, the opening goal eventually arrived from a
simpler, more direct approach. When space opened up for Nasri 20 yards out
he opted to shoot for goal, and although Adrian got fingers to his effort as
it flew past him, he could only tip onto the inside of the post and in. With
Newcastle also winning at Liverpool at that point, City were able to relax
and Pablo Zabalata almost added a quickfire second as Aguero crossed low
from the right, but James Tomkins got across well to block behind for a
corner. They went even closer wih the final action of the opening period
when Toure worked the ball to Silva, whose shot skipped up off Andy
Carroll's foot and crashed against the far post.

It did not take the hosts long after the break to notch the decisive second
as, with just four second half minutes played, a corner from the right hit
Edin Dzeko on the back and dropped perfectly for Kompany to smash home. That
got the party started at the Etihad, although City perhaps took their eyes
off the ball on the pitch for a moment as a bouncing Matty Taylor shot
bobbled wide of the post, then Joe Hart had to use all of his spring to
divert a left-wing cross away from Carroll. The City chances soon started
coming again and only Aguero will know how he failed to convert Zabaleta's
66th minute low cross. The goal was at his mercy, but he failed to make
proper contact and the ball dribbled into a grateful Adrian's hands. West
Ham's No13 had to stand up by his near post to block Nasri's shot as City
looked for a third, but in truth much of the sting had come out of the game
with the home side having completed the job and 2-0 was how it ended.

Manchester City: Hart; Zabaleta, Kompany, Demichelis, Kolarov; Nasri, Toure
(Negredo 86), Garcia, Silva (Milner 76); Dzeko (Fernandinho 69), Aguero
Subs: Pantilimon, Lescott, Clichy, Jovetic
Goals: Nasri 39, Kompany 49
Booked: Demichelis, Aguero
West Ham United: Adrian; O'Brien, Tomkins, Reid, McCartney; Nolan (Jarvis
63), Noble, Taylor; Downing, Carroll (C.Cole 72), Diame (J.Cole 81)
Subs: Jaaskelainen, Armero, Vaz Te, Collins
Booked: Nolan, Noble
Referee: Martin Atkinson

Big Sam proud of Hammers' efforts
Sam Allardyce said Sunday's display in defeat at Manchester City was one
West Ham United could be proud of

Sam Allardyce was proud of his West Ham United players efforts in Sunday's
2-0 defeat at Barclays Premier League champions Manchester City. The Hammers
worked as hard as they have all season against a City side who knew a point
would be enough to secure a second title in three seasons, keeping the hosts
at arm's length for much of the opening half. Manuel Pellegrini's side
finally broke West Ham's resistance on 39 minutes, when Samir Nasri's low
shot went in via Adrian's hand and the inside of the far post. After the
break, West Ham improved, only for City to double their lead in fortuitious
circumstances when a corner hit Edin Dzeko and a defender before being
lashed in by captain Vincent Kompany. Kevin Nolan and Matt Taylor both fired
shots off-target for the visitors, who increasingly came into the game in
the final half-hour, but Big Sam's men could not find the goal that their
considerable efforts warranted. With the final whistle, West Ham ended a
difficult, injury-affected season 13th in the table, securing a third
straight season of Barclays Premier League football in 2014/15.
"City have scored 61 goals at home and, with the quality they have, every
single gem in their squad was out there playing, so we had to defend with
everything we had," said the manager. "It's just a shame Adrian let the goal
slip in. He got a full hand on it, but not a strong enough hand. Otherwise,
we may have got in at half-time at nil-nil. "On the other side, we didn't
really cause them too many problems, which was a little disappointing. We
did some really good defending, but then wasted a lot of good possession
with our final ball and didn't create chances. To be fair, we weren't
expecting many, but we were expecting a little better. "Then of course the
sickener was just after half-time when they got a goal off a corner which,
when you look at it, was extremely lucky from Manchester City's point of
view. It just bobbled around and fell to Vincent Kompany, who put it in. "It
was always going to be hard work to come back form that against such a great
team, having only lost one game here. The lads put their best efforts in and
tried as hard as they could but we finished the season not quite as high as
we wanted to. For us, it's about re-grouping for next season and getting
ready for pre-season training."

Having sat 19th in the table with 15 points from 20 games, West Ham won
eight of their remaining 18 games and drew at Chelsea to climb to a
finishing position of 13th on 40 points. "In 2014 we have turned it around,"
said the manager. "We've won seven of our 15 games and if you tot that up
over a full season, you can see what sort of season we would have had and
that's similar to last year. "We know one thing we're short of and which
we've missed out on this year, apart from having to suffered from all the
injuries which cost us results, is scoring goals. We didn't create many
chances on Sunday, but when we have created chances we have not converted
enough of them. "Our focus is to be as good as we were defensively this
season and to create more chances and be more clinical in front of goal.
When we do that, we are fine, but on too many occasions we have suffered the
negative effect of not turning our chances into goals. "Two or three more
one-nil wins and we'd have matched the 46 points we got last season, so it's
very small margins of improvement that we need to do better."

U18s suffer semi-final defeat
West Ham United suffered a dramatic Barclays U18 Premier League Play-Off
semi-final loss at Manchester City

West Ham United were knocked out of the Barclays Premier League Play-Offs
after a 2-1 defeat by Manchester City at Platt Lane on Saturday. West Ham
led for 73 minutes after Jordan Brown's early opener, only for the Northern
Division winners to snatch victory and a place in the final with two goals
in the final ten minutes. The Hammers went ahead after just seven minutes
when Josh Cullen chased down the City back line to open up a chance for
Brown to slide the ball into an empty net. City captain Ashley Smith-Brown
popped up with ten minutes remaining to pull the hosts level, before Kean
Byran converted an 88th minute penalty after a handball from Nathan Mavila.
U18s boss Steve Potts took an almost full-strength team up to Manchester for
this vital fixture, although he was without England U17 goalkeeper Sam
Howes, who. Is away with England at the UEFA European U17 Championship
finals in Malta. The hosts started well and had the first mentionable
opportunity of the game just four minutes in when a free-kick from City
left-back Jose Tasende found Jorge Intima at the back post, who headed back
across the face for Tosin Adarabioyo to slice wide of the goal. West Ham
reacted well and went ahead two minutes later when tireless midfielder
Cullen worked hard to hunt down the Manchester City defence, giving Brown
the opportunity to roll the ball into the net. The Hammers could have had a
chance to double their lead minutes later when Brown was bundled over in the
penalty box, but the referee decided against pointing to the spot.

Manchester City came back strongly in the first half and had several efforts
to grab an equaliser, although the closest they came to scoring was when
Smith-Brown played in Thierry Ambrose, who hit the far post. Just before
half-time the visitors had a golden opportunity to push further ahead when
Jamie Harney saw his header from a corner cleared off the line by the face
of a City defender. Into the second half and the Hammers came out looking
for the important second goal, with Kieran Bywater curling an effort just
round the far post after being set up by Djair Parfitt-Williams. From there,
City grew in confidence and appeared to get stronger, with talented striker
Brandon Barker having two opportunities from the edge of the Hammers penalty
area. However, the visitors blocked both efforts. If the Hammers were going
to hold on, it was going to take every piece of energy they had. Centre-back
Harney was showing the Hammers' desire to win by taking several shots to the
chest and other painful areas. But City continued to press for the equaliser
and were finally rewarded when the Hammers half cleared their lines,
allowing Smith-Brown to run at the defence and fire a shot that was
deflected into the back of the net. The goal clearly deflated the Hammers,
who had worked so hard to maintain their advantage. With just two minutes
remaining, the situation got even worse when the referee pointed to the
penalty spot after an apparent handball by Mavila. The decision was strongly
disputed by the West Ham players and staff, but that did not stop City
substitute Bryan slotting the ball into the corner of the Hammers net from
12 yards.

The result brought the curtain down on West Ham's 2013/14 campaign, with
Manchester City preparing to face either Everton or Tottenham Hotspur in the
final. Defender Harney summed up the players' emotions after the game, but
insisted that the side have had a brilliant season that they should be proud
"It's a very difficult result to take, but I thought the lads defended
superbly throughout the game," admitted Harney. "In the last ten minutes, we
were up against it and it seems that a couple of penalty decisions have
decided it. "All we can do it congratulate Manchester City because you can't
take away the fact that they are a good team that played well, but we
deserved to get something out the game. "For the team, it's been a good
season, except for the Youth Cup game [which saw West Ham lose at Accrington
Stanley in the third round]. We've played well this season against the big
teams and I think that showed against Man City because we should've got a
result and given ourselves a chance to reach the final."

U18s: Nemrava, Knoyle, Burke, Harney, Mavila, Nasha (Amoo), Makasi, Cullen,
Bywater, J.Brown, Parfitt-Williams (Gordon)
Subs not used: T.Brown, Pike, Onariase

Manchester City crowned Premier League champions with 2-0 victory over West
Last Updated: 11/05/14 8:29pm

Manchester City cruised to their second Premier League title in three years
with a comfortable 2-0 victory over West Ham at the Etihad Stadium. Needing
only a point for glory, City finally broke through the massed ranks of West
Ham defenders in the 39th minute when Samir Nasri's low long-range shot
proved too hot to handle for goalkeeper Adrian.

Best of the match

Man of the match: Samir Nasri opened the scoring, set up the second for
Vincent Kompany with his corner and was a constant threat.
Goal of the match: Nasri's opener was a well-struck effort from long range,
but Adrian may feel he could have done better.
Moment of the match: The outpouring of jubilation from the City supporters
as they flooded onto the field at the final whistle.
Pass of the match: Yaya Toure played a delightful one-two with Nasri as he
scooped the ball over the West Ham backline, only for Adrian to save.
Talking points: Can City build on this success and mount a serious defence
of their title? How should West Ham regard their second season back in the
Premier League?

That removed any lingering nerves for Manuel Pellegrini's men, who have only
led the Premier League for 14 days this season, with Liverpool's 2-1 win
against Newcastle at Anfield ensuring City ended the season as they began
the final day - two points clear of their nearest rivals. Vincent Kompany
gleefully lashed home a Nasri corner from six yards out early in the second
half to start the party at the Etihad, and with Joe Hart a virtual spectator
throughout the game, there was never even a hint of a West Ham fightback. It
was raining heavily at kick-off but the atmosphere was raucous and City
approached the game with the confidence of a side that were comfortable and
in control of their destiny.

City's top scorer Sergio Aguero was back in their side after injury but not
at his sharpest, although on this occasion his brilliance was not needed.
West Ham did play a little more positively than the previous visitors, Aston
Villa in midweek, but the occasions they threatened were still few and far
between. The hosts appealed unsuccessfully for a penalty early on after Mark
Noble deflected a Pablo Zabaleta cross onto his hand.


Their first real chance came after David Silva and Aguero combined well on
the edge of the box. Yaya Toure's initial effort was blocked before Silva
volleyed over from a Zabaleta cross. Vincent Kompany lifts the Premier
League trophy after Manchester City sealed the title with a 2-0 win over
West Ham. Zabaleta then wanted a penalty after going down under a challenge
from Mohamed Diame before Aguero showed some nimble footwork to spark an
attack from inside his own half. The ball was worked across the field and
Aguero tried to finish from distance but slipped as he shot and Adrian saved
comfortably. Nasri then had a good cross turned behind and Toure curled a
shot narrowly wide as news filtered through that Liverpool had fallen behind
in their game against Newcastle.

Manuel Pellegrini chats to Ed Chamberlin following Manchester City's 2-0 win
over West Ham that sealed the title. City maintained the pressure, with
Aleksandar Kolarov forcing Adrian to tip over a powerful drive from
distance. Nasri finally broke through six minutes before the interval as he
took aim from 20 yards and struck a powerful low shot which flew beyond
Adrian and into the side-netting. City fans then increased the volume
significantly and Aguero glanced a header wide before Silva saw an effort
deflected onto the bar off Andy Carroll. Joe Hart says Manchester City's
form in the final weeks of the season is what won them the title. City truly
got the party started four minutes into the second half when Kompany stabbed
home from six yards after Edin Dzeko won the ball from a corner - the City
captain celebrating with unconfined joy.

West Ham did make a rare charge to the City end but Matt Taylor's mistimed
shot bounced wide. Aguero had two opportunities to extend City's lead but
headed wide at the near post and then failed to connect cleanly in front of
an open goal from a Zabaleta cross. Samir Nasri gives his immediate reaction
to Manchester City winning the title following their 2-0 win against West
Ham. Aguero appeared to pick up another knock in the closing moments and he
showed his frustration by bundling over Noble off the ball. That sparked an
unnecessary scuffle between several players of both sides and Aguero was
eventually booked, but it could not dampen City's celebrations. They knew
the job was completed and the hosts duly played out the closing minutes with
little alarm to prompt a pitch invasion and jubilant scenes.

West Ham boss Sam Allardyce remains defiant over future
Last Updated: 11/05/14 8:06pm

Sam Allardyce remained defiant over his future at West Ham and believes he
has proved his ability at the very highest level. Rumblings over Allardyce's
role at Upton Park have persisted amid protests from some supporters in
recent weeks and he is expected to deal with the issue at an end-of-season
meeting with the club's owners on Tuesday. Speaking after West Ham's 2-0
defeat at Manchester City that saw the home side secure the league title,
Allardyce said: "If you are a manager, this is the highest level in the
world. "I have competed at this level for many, many years. There's only
Arsene Wenger has competed at this level longer than me. Vincent Kompany
lifts the Premier League trophy after Manchester City sealed the title with
a 2-0 win over West Ham. "I know how to manage in this league and I know how
to turn teams into better teams than when you first take them over, so there
you go. "I find the game strange. I think the volatility of this year's game
has been spread across the board by the amount of sackings of managers
throughout the Barclays Premier League. "I think 10 have been changed
already and I don't think it has ever been 50 per cent in one season, and if
another goes, who knows, it will be more than 50 per cent.
"It's not a very secure industry but it's one we all love and enjoy doing.
"We have had no real threat of relegation for a while and we have done the
job after our difficulties in December and January. "We have won seven of
15, nearly a 50 per cent win rate and we have 14 clean sheets. "I have
competed at this level for many, many years. There's only Arsene Wenger has
competed at this level longer than me." "The lads have withstood the
pressure and we are established in the Premier League for the second season
on the trot, exactly where I was asked to get us to be. Statistically, year
three is better but that depends if you can improve your squad."

Allardyce added that City deserved to be champions, as goals from Samir
Nasri and Vincent Kompany secured the title. He said: "They are head and
shoulders above the rest because they are top of the Premier League and
because they have the best squad. "They have competed in all four
competitions to the maximum level. To win a double - the Capital One Cup and
the Barclays Premier League - one has to say they are the best squad and the
best team in the league at this moment. "Liverpool came on a fantastic run
but they had no FA Cup, no Capital One Cup and no Europe."

By Iain Dale 11 May 2014 at 17:17
West Ham Till I Die

Another woeful performance which in many ways summed up our season. We had
no shots on goal in 90 minutes. Repeat. None. Nada. Zero. And not for the
first time. Yes, we were playing the Champions, but we had no game plan
apart from the usual. Which in turn meant we didn't have a chance. There
wasn't one offensive player who covered themselves in glory or who would
merit more than a 5/10 rating. Andy Carroll ought to have been playing for a
place in England's World Cup squad. Well, he's got no chance of that now,
I'd say. Kevin Nolan, who was supposed to be desperate to win so his home
city of Liverpool could win the championship, put in a performance which
veered between embarrassing and appalling. And if those two weren't
interested, the rest of the team wasn't going to perform.

The best thing you can say about this performance from West Ham was that the
defence performed adequately. But even then, you'd have to say Adrian should
have palmed Nasri's shot at goal which put them one up round the post. Yet
again Adrian failed to convince. I thought Winston Reid had a very decent
game and looks to be getting back to his best. He got us out of trouble on
several occasions.

I haven't yet heard Sam Allardyce's post match comments, but they will no
doubt be filled with the usual hubris. On Tuesday he meets with the Board to
discuss the future. Had he been able to use the right tactics today and
avoid defeat he might have given the Board a lot of food for thought. But he
didn't. He showed that yet again he is a one trick pony.

It's great that we kept 14 clean sheets. But we also failed to score in 15
Premier League games, but no one mentions that. We only scored 40 goals in
38 games. The priority for next season has to be to play with two strikers,
one of whom is capable of scoring 15 goals. I'm afraid we'll never do that
with the kind of tactics that are currently employed.

So we finished on 40 points, in 13th place, seven points above the drop
zone. If we'd been offered that at Christmas we'd have snapped a few hands
off. But look at Stoke. They too were down with us at the time. They
finished in 9th place with 50 points, and they've done that with some
decidedly average players, but playing neat passing football. Mark Hughes
has transformed them from a hoof it team to a team which likes to play good
football. It can be done, and let's hope our owners recognise this.

UPDATE: Read this report of the game on the club's website. It's like bloody
Pravda. Sam was apparently "proud" of his players' efforts. And " it's very
small margins of improvement that we need to do better." Jesus wept.

West Ham's Allardyce warns sacking him would be wrong despite fans'
May 11, 2014 18:28 By David Anderson
The Mirrpr

Sam Allardyce claims West Ham shouldn't sack him, because he has met all
their targets. Big Sam mounted a robust defence of his record as the Hammers
prepare to end his three-year reign and he has kept them up for a second
successive season. "We've had no real threat of relegation for a while,"
said Allardyce, following Sunday's 2-0 loss at Manchester City. "We've won
seven out of the last 15, which is nearly a 50 per cent win rate. So we've
pulled ourselves out of the bottom three in the league and finished 13th.
"We've got 14 clean sheets. I suppose the problem is when you have your best
run at the end of the season rather than at the beginning. "Our best run
last season was in the beginning of the season when we got 15 or 16 points
in the first 10 games and were never really threatened with relegation.
"This year, we've had it at the end rather than in the beginning so the
pressure has been on us. "The lads have withstood the pressure and we are
established in the Premier League for the second season on the trot, exactly
where I was asked to get us to be."

Allardyce has been booed by West Ham fans when he has won at home and he
highlighted the fact only Arsene Wenger has more Premier League experience
than him. "Only Arsene Wenger has competed at this level longer than me," he
said defiantly. "I know how to manage in this league and I know how to turn
teams into better teams than when you first took them over."

Will 13th place prove unlucky for West Ham manager Sam Allardyce?
Sunday 11 May 2014 9:15 pm

The Irons had gone into the final game of the season at Manchester City
knowing that, potentially, they could be the decision makers in the Premier
League title race, but once Liverpool conceded an early goal, surely
everyone watching events at the Etihad knew that the writing was not so much
on the wall as carved into it. No surprises here.

At the final whistle, the locals celebrated a 2-0 win to secure their second
title in three seasons, and West Ham fans were left looking at the league
table, considering the season-long course of events which had taken them to
13th place – and wondering what impact that will have on the future of
manager Sam Allardyce.

West Ham's second season back in the top flight has been a tortuous affair,
with the finger of blame pointed squarely at Allardyce – the world's 13th
best paid manager – for his perceived tactical stubbornness, poor results
and the lack of flair provided by the teams he has picked and instructed.

A recent survey of over 12,000 fans showed almost 80% want him replaced,
with booing of the team after their home win over Hull and banners on
display in the defeat at West Brom the most public demonstrations of
dissatisfaction, and club owner David Gold, who makes a point of
communicating directly with fans, has been made fully aware of this view.

Sunderland's manager Gus Poyet has been linked with the West Ham job
(Picture: AP Photo)
Victory over Tottenham in the final home game of the season not only ensured
West Ham's Premier League place was secured with one game to spare, but also
avoided the statistic of 10 home league defeats for the season, which would
have been yet another piece of ammunition for Allardyce's critics.

In the run-up to the City game, Friday's papers were full of reports that a
decision had already been taken that Allardyce would be out of a job once
the season was over, and many fans noticed that on that same day, former
West Ham player and highly-regarded young manager Malky Mackay announced a
very sudden end to his on-going dispute with former club Cardiff.

Pre-match, there was talk linking Gus Poyet, the man who so successfully
transformed Sunderland's seemingly doomed season, with the Boleyn Ground
job. Ironically, the Uruguayan has made his name by undoing the damage done
by the ill-fated reign of predecessor and West Ham legend Paolo di Canio, a
man often mentioned as a future Irons boss.

Allardyce will have been hugely relieved to have been spared the nightmare
scenario of going to City in need of something to ensure survival, and
considering his side's previous record against the champions this season,
2-0 was hardly a disgrace.

But having hauled themselves over the line, now is the time for West Ham to
have a long hard think about their future. And many fans will wonder whether
someone drawing the 13th highest managerial salary in world football to
produce the 13th best results in England should be part of it.

West Ham Chase Norwich City Midfielder and San Siro Wonder-Kid In Hammers
Spending Spree
by The Newshound May 11th, 2014

West Ham boss Sam Allardyce will be handed funds to make significant moves
in the summer transfer window and the Sunday Mirror claims the east London
side have set their sights on Norwich City wide-man Robert Snodgrass and a
number of other potential targets. The Hammers can pick up Snodgrass for as
little as £3m with the Canaries no doubt looking to balance the books as
they prepare for life in the Championship. West Ham are ready to target AC
Milan youngster M'Baye Niang, who has impressed during his loan spell at
Montpellier this season and would also cost £3m. Allardyce also wants to
sign Ipswich's highly-rated left-back Aaron Cresswell. There are still
doubts over Allardyce's long term future in charge of the club but if he
were to start conducting transfer business early in the window that would at
least give the impression that the former Bolton manager is going nowhere.


This email is free from viruses and malware because avast! Antivirus protection is active.

No comments: