Friday, May 2

Daily WHUFC News - 2nd May 2014

Big Sam on: Tottenham Hotspur
Sam Allardyce has spoken to the press ahead of Saturday's game against
Tottenham Hotspur

West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce has spoken to the media ahead of
Saturday's game against Tottenham Hotspur. Big Sam is eyeing a third victory
of the season over the north Londoners, and he fielded questions on his
team's form, supporter opinion and Saturday's game itself.

Sam, what do you make of the criticism the team has faced after recent

SA: "We haven't kept ourselves up again just yet. Just to get a result in
our last home game is very important to us all. We want to finish the season
without leaving a dampener on it because of our recent results. I said after
the game at West Brom that nobody wants to be criticised, but the game is
the game, and it is what it is at the moment. Hostility in terms of
disapproval of what you're doing or not doing is part of the job. All
together, everybody keeps telling me about how we need to play and what
performances we need to give, but in our last four games all of our
performances have been very good. But without a result, then comes
criticism, so the perception of how you play the game or how you should play
the game comes down to only one thing, and that's results, not what you've
done for the 90 minutes.
"It's about have you won at the end of it. We've lost all of our last four,
but the performances have been as good as the opposition, and in lots of
cases better. I can't remember us playing as well as we did against
Liverpool this season, but we lost to two penalties and it's a defeat,
rather than getting something out of the game against one of the favourites
to win the league.
"Against Arsenal the overall performance was there, then Crystal Palace and
West Brom, everyone talks about possession and we out-possessed both Crystal
Palace and West Brom, but because we haven't won everyone perceives that
they were poor performances. I know what is right, and I know it's a
results-driven business. We're not getting results and without results you
get criticised, and we all accept that."

Does the criticism bother you?

SA: "Since the end of the transfer window, we're in the top half of the
table for points gained, we're 14th in the league, six teams are below us
who'd like to be where we are, and that's the reality. Disappointment is
always expressed in many different ways and the only way to stop the
disappointment is to go and win a football match.
"Of course it bothers you, but you don't let it affect your clear thinking.
You concentrate on the players and make sure they continue to strive to get
better and better."

You obviously want to continue the job you've started here...

SA: "I wouldn't see it any other way, until either David Sullivan, David
Gold or Karren Brady ring me and tell me otherwise. You've got to remember
that we're all in this together and that's why we are where we are. We're
trying to progress the football club, so I'm delivering what the owners
want, and at the moment we've got what we want - not as much as we wanted,
but we've got what we want nearly. We're very, very close to being in the
Premier League for a third season and trying to make the Club better and
stabilising its position, particularly going forward to become a club that
has the capability of sustaining it's Premier League status, growing slowly
but surely and making sure it stays in the Premier League for a long period
of time."

Can you talk a bit about the job Tim Sherwood has done at Tottenham?

SA: "Like I said in our field you never know what's going to happen. You're
never comfortable, wherever you are, and in Tim's position I think he's
proven that he can handle the job and he's proven that he's learned as he's
gone on. You're bound to slip up when you're doing it for the first time, I
still slip up after 20-odd years. We all make mistakes, but you learn from
them and I think he's learned very quickly. I think Tottenham have done
very, very well under him and what they decide at the end of the day is up
to the owners and board at Tottenham."

Two of your best results this season have come against Tottenham Hotspur...

SA: "Yes, and it would be absolutely fantastic to beat them at home, having
beaten them in the Capital One Cup and in the league. At this moment in
time, our concerns are, one, we were one of the best clean sheets in the
league eight or nine games ago and we haven't kept one since then. That's
been our demise that has caused us a few problems. Two, and it's been the
case all season, that the chances created have always been there, but our
conversion rate when you look at the stats hasn't been good enough.
"If we are to beat Tottenham it's no good to continue to play well if we
carry on making basic errors. West Brom's goal was down to our poor
defending, not their ability and we have to eradicate that. We have to put
the ball in the net when the chances come because otherwise the pressure
heaps on you more than it should."

You talk about teams who allow you to play an expansive game and Tottenham
are one of them aren't they?

SA: "They come and play and try and open up because of the quality of
players that they have. They will think their eleven is better than yours,
but on the day if your players hit top form we're more than capable of
beating them. We have to be very wary of what their strengths are and make
sure their strengths are nullified. Then we have to make sure we use our
strengths to try and break their defensive unit down and take our chances
when we get them."

What's your team news for Saturday, Sam?

SA: "We've got a virtually fully-fit squad. Only Marco Borriello is still
injured and the rest of the team are available, which gives me a selection
process which is for me to decide which is the best eleven to go out and try
and win our last home game. Winning the last home game [is important]
because you want to send everyone home happy."

You have four or five players out of contract at the moment, what's the
situation with them?

SA: "None of the players are going to be decided on individually, we will
decide at the same time. If we secure a point or more on Saturday, then we
can start that process. If we know we're safe, we'll move in that area as
quickly as we possibly can."

Carr backs U18s for strong finish
Academy Director Tony Carr MBE says the Hammers U18s can seal their play-off

The West Ham United Academy side head into their final game of the regular
Barclays U18 Premier League season on Friday knowing a point will be enough
to guarantee their presence in the Play-Offs. West Ham currently sit second
in the table and a draw against Arsenal would mean third-place Fulham no
longer have a chance of catching the Hammers, thus earning Steve Potts' men
a crack at Manchester City in the semi-finals of the four-team shootout.
Academy Director Tony Carr MBE believes a top-two finish would be a just
reward for his charges, who have recovered from a recent blip to register
four points from their last two games. With the Development Squad's season
now over, the U18s should be able to call upon more of their second year
scholars and Carr says the team's winning mentality can see them through. He
said: "In some respects we've capitalised on the success of Fulham, because
we were on a great run after Christmas, six or seven wins on the trot and we
were bound for the play-offs. "Then some of our players got promoted to the
U21s and weakened our team, which is the natural thing to do at this time of
year, so result-wise we suffered even though performances were still good.
"Fulham have now had to do that because of their run to the FA Youth Cup
final and we've capitalised on their slip-up in results. "When you get to
U18 level, winning is an important part of their development. It's not win
at all costs at that level, but you have to create a winning mentality. Now
we're at the business end of the season as the old cliche goes, and we need
a point on Friday and we'll be in the play-offs against Manchester City."

The last couple of weeks have proven difficult for the Academy, with Dylan
Tombides' passing affecting the players and staff deeply. Carr had high
praise for Dylan's ability, saying it was cruel that such a talent had been
taken too early. He added: "We all believed that Dylan had all the
credentials to go on and do good things for us. The year he was named Young
Hammer of the Year, he went off to the U17 World Cup with Australia. Little
did we know that was going to be the beginning of his illness and
unfortunately his untimely death three years later. "It's a lesson to every
young player and young person really to live life to the full, give your
maximum every day, because you just don't know what's round the corner for
any of us."

Kick-off at Little Heath on Friday is at 1pm, with admission and parking
both free of charge

West Ham boss Sam Allardyce determined to carry on

West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce says he is determined to carry on at
Upton Park despite unrest among fans. The Hammers have lost their last four
Premier League games and are not yet mathematically safe from relegation.
Some fans vented their displeasure at Allardyce during last Saturday's 1-0
defeat by West Brom. "We're trying to progress the club, so I'm delivering
what the owners want. We're close to being in the Premier League for a third
season," he said. The 59-year-old former Bolton, Newcastle and Blackburn
boss took charge at Upton Park in June 2011 after the Hammers had been
relegated from the Premier League under Avram Grant. He led the Hammers to
promotion via the Championship play-offs in his first season before securing
a 10th place finish in the top-flight last season. But after a four-match
winning run in February, West Ham have faltered, losing seven of the last
nine games. They start the penultimate weekend of the Premier League season
14th in the table, five points above the relegation zone. A win on Saturday
at home to Tottenham, who they have beaten twice this season, will secure a
third straight campaign in the top flight. Despite the criticism from fans,
Allardyce plans to carry on as manager until he is told otherwise by West
Ham's owners David Sullivan and David Gold, or vice-chairman Karren Brady.
"I wouldn't see it any other way until they ring me and tell me otherwise,"
he said. "Without results you get criticised. Hostility in terms of
disapproval of what you're doing or not doing is part of the job."

Tottenham manager Tim Sherwood's position is also under scrutiny, with Ajax
manager Frank de Boer linked with a move to White Hart Lane. "Tim's proven
that he can handle the job and he's proven that he's learned as he's gone
on," added Allardyce. "Tottenham have done very well under him and what they
decide at the end of the day is up to the owners and board at Tottenham."

West Ham v ottenham
KO 12:45
Danny Rose, Aaron Lennon
1 May 2014
Last updated at 16:40
By John Motson
BBC Match of the Day commentator

Venue: Upton Park Date: Saturday, 3 May


West Ham manager Sam Allardyce has a near fully-fit squad to choose from to
face Tottenham. Long-term injury victim Marco Borriello is the only

Tottenham winger Andros Townsend will miss Saturday's trip to West Ham, and
this summer's World Cup with an ankle injury. There are similar concerns
about Kyle Walker due to his pelvic injury.


This is a meeting of two managers with uncertain futures. As with most
things in sport, and life, there are two ways of looking at the situation
surrounding Tim Sherwood and Sam Allardyce. In some ways Allardyce could be
celebrated for bringing West Ham to within a point of a third-consecutive
season in the top flight. To his critics - who have been particularly vocal
of late, even in victory - the end doesn't justify the means in terms of the
style of play Big Sam favours.
As a result the back end of this season on the field is being overshadowed
by talk of his future beyond this summer. That chit-chat is something
Sherwood knows all too well, and has made his feelings known on this week
after yet more speculation about his future. Like Allardyce, Sherwood would
be well within his rights to point to his record since taking over at the
club, which stands at 12 wins from 20 league matches. On the field, West Ham
have been struggling of late. Their defence, which was so reliable, is
letting them down and they have struggled to score goals. I saw them in the
defeat against Crystal Palace two weeks ago and the method was very much to
play everything through Andy Carroll. That may not be the worst plan given
his recent record against Spurs, but on current form this has the look of an
away victory. I was also at the corresponding match last season when Gareth
Bale scored twice to earn Spurs a 3-2 win and it is one of the game's
imponderables as to how they would have fared this season with him in their
squad. What we can be certain of is the importance of this game to both
managers. Their futures might be up in the air but there would surely be no
better way to catch the eye of the club's owners than by ending the season
on a high. That fact, plus the usual spice of a London derby, means there's
little chance of an end-of-season feel to this game.

Tottenham have lost just one of the last six meetings at Upton Park (W4, L1,
D1), including a 3-2 win last season which featured a last-minute winner
from Gareth Bale.
West Ham have beaten Tottenham at White Hart Lane twice this season. A first
league victory, 3-0, on Spurs soil since 1999 in October and a 2-1 League
Cup quarter-final win in December.

West Ham United
West Ham have not kept a clean sheet in their last 10 league matches and
have lost seven of their last nine league games (W2).
The Hammers had just three shots on target against West Brom last time out.
Only Norwich (4) and Newcastle (3) have earned fewer points than West Ham
(6) from their last eight matches.
West Ham have lost the most points from winning positions this season (20);
Tottenham the fewest (6).
Only Hull and Fulham have a worse record against top-half opposition this
season than the Hammers (W2, D3, L13).
Andy Carroll has scored in both previous meetings with Tottenham as a West
Ham player. However, he has not scored a league goal at Upton Park since
March 2013.

Tottenham are two wins shy of equalling their best-ever Premier League
points tally of 72 (set last season).
Spurs ended a run of seven games without a clean sheet by beating Stoke 1-0
last time out.
That win was also a first in five attempts away from White Hart Lane (L3,
Only Liverpool (34) have earned more points than Tottenham (33) on their
travels this season.
Spurs have scored 12 goals in their last four league games, West Ham have
managed two.
Roberto Soldado has not scored a Premier League away goal since 20 October.

Ex-Milan boss lined up as Big Sam replacement?
Filed: Thursday, 1st May 2014
By: Staff Writer

Former Milan manager Massimiliano Allegri has claimed to have spoken to West
Ham with regards to Sam Allardyce's managerial position. The 46-year-old,
who has also been linked with Tottenham and Manchester United is reported to
have held preliminary talks with West Ham over a possible move to England
this summer. Italian journalist Alfredo Pedulla, who works for Italian TV
sports channel RAI Sport claimed via his website tonight that the Hammers
had expressed an interest in luring the former midfielder to London. And
Allegri, who has been out of work since being sacked by the Italian giants
back in January is said to have been "intrigued" by the possibility. A
journeyman during his playing career, Allegri featured for 12 clubs between
1984 and 2003 when he retired in order to concentrate on management. A year
at Serie D Aglianese was followed by a season with Real SPAL before
Grosseto, then of Serie C came calling. Further spells with Sassuolo and
Cagliari followed before he was appointed manager of Milan in June 2010.
Allegri spent three-and-a-half years at the San Siro, leading i Rossoneri to
a Championship win during his first season and Supercoppa Italiana success
the following year. Last month Corriere dello Sport claimed that Allegri had
already agreed to join West Ham's neighbours Tottenham this summer, with an
announcement to follow at the end of the current season.

Redknapp seeking permanent Ravel deal
Filed: Thursday, 1st May 2014
By: Staff Writer

Harry Redknapp has revealed that he'd likje to sign Ravel Morrison on a
permanent basis - but only if QPR make an instant return to the Premier
West Ham's on-loan youngster has scored six goals for Rangers since moving
to Loftus Road back in January on a 93-day loan spell. And Redknapp, who
like Morrison once plied his trade at the Boleyn Ground admitted today that
he'd like to acquire the services of the England Under 21 on a more
permanent basis.
"We'll just have to wait and see," he told the Star. "It depends what
happens at the end of the season. If we get up, surely there would be a
chance of keeping him and doing something with him. "I don't know what his
plans are really. He's just here playing well and we're enjoying having him
around. Talent-wise he's got as much talent as almost anyone I've worked
with in all my career. He's got great skill and fantastic ability. "Whether
he can produce it like the top players week in, week out, over a long period
still remains to be seen, but it would be a waste of his career and a waste
for English football if he doesn't become a top player really because he's
got the ability."

Despite having been contracted to West Ham since January 2012, Morrison has
made a total of just 22 appearances for the Hammers. Since January he has
played 15 times for QPR, whilst he appeared 30 times for Birmingham during
his season-long loan spell at St Andrew's between August 2012 and May 2013.

Gold: We're in safe hands with Big Sam
Filed: Thursday, 1st May 2014
By: Staff Writer

David Gold has defended Sam Allardyce's record at the club less than 48
hours ahead of West Ham's final home game of the season. The Hammers face
Spurs at the Boleyn Ground on Saturday knowing that a win would give them an
unprecedented third victory against our nearest Premier League rivals in the
same season, following the two successes at White Hart Lane during the
opening half of the campaign.

And Gold, who remains fully supportive of the man he and co-owner David
Sullivan appointed in the summer of 2011 as replacement for the sacked Avram
Grant insisted that the under-pressure Allardyce has met every target set of
him in the last three years.

"We got relegated under Avram Grant and I confess that was a mistake,
although Avram was a very nice man," Gold said in an interview with Ridge
Radio last night. "He was a round peg in a square hole and it didn't work
for us.

"Relegation was devastating. This wasn't part of the plan. We needed a
complete change of character, a change of focus and after much deliberation
we brought in Sam Allardyce. We said to him: "Sam, we want you to get us
promoted". That's what we asked Sam to do, and he did it.

"Then we said "Sam, we want you to keep us up" because this isn't about one
season, it isn't about a couple of years - this is about a plan that takes
us from joining the football club four years ago to the Olympic Stadium,
which is a six-year venture.

"Then of course we asked Sam to keep us up again and he's about to do that,
barring a miracle. For all of these things to come together the most
important thing is to stay in the Premier League. Getting relegated again is
just unthinkable, it would be devastating."

Gold also dismissed claims that Allardyce's teams have only one way of
playing football - a perceived direct style, that the 77-year-old believes
simply isn't the case.

"We're now being associated as a long ball team, implying that we hit more
long balls than any other club in the Premier League - but that is
absolutely not true," he argued. " There is this perception but we have to
be very careful.

"If we were in the bottom three then I'd say ok, we've really got to face up
to this fact that we're a long ball football club. However let me tell you
this; Real Madrid, 2-0 down with ten minutes to go will launch the ball into
the box. It's human nature and it's what happens.

"It's just what you do when you're running out of time, the ball starts
getting launched. But equally, we must balance that by saying what a
fantastic goal we scored against Tottenham where the ball never left the
ground from the defence to hitting the back of the net."

And coming back to this weekend's match - West Ham's final home game of what
has been a difficult 2013/14 campaign - Gold believes that the players are
desperate to sign off with a third successive victory against Spurs.

"Speaking to a number of players, they're really up for this last home game
because they feel they've let the fans down a bit," he said. "They've not
played up to their normal standard at times so they would love to go out on
a high.

"I was speaking to Sam on Monday and that's his plan. He's desperate to face
Tottenham on Saturday and win the game convincingly and break that record."

Looking beyond the season's end and into the summer, Gold - in cahoots with
Allardyce - is hoping to make a number of key signings to both replace
departing players and enhance the quality of the first team squad, which has
been severely stretched at times this year.

And he hopes that the relegation worries of this season - something that has
led to calls for Allardyce to be fired - will be a thing of the past.

"I'm optimistic but not unrealistic; I believe that we will be stronger," he
insisted. "There's no doubt that the squad that will turn out at the
beginning of next season will be a stronger squad than the squad that turned
out at the beginning of this season.

"Therefore I would like to think that we won't have this battle against
relegation next year - and that will enable us to be more aggressive during
our cup ventures. In that past we've had to protect our players because of
injuries. You're always fearful that if you play your top players and they
get injured in a Cup match, the fans would never forgive you.

"That's not me, that's Sam - he's the one making decisions. He's the one
saying I daren't go to Nottingham Forest and play one of my top players as
he could get injured; I can't risk it. But you wouldn't have that pressure
if you weren't fighting relegation, or doing well and winning games.

"You have to remember the injuries we've sustained throughout the season. We
were expecting Andy Carroll to be fit and raring to go two matches into the
season - and it ended up being nearly 20 matches before we saw him.

"Next year, all things being equal he will start the season. It'll make a
big, big difference - as will some new faces coming in to strengthen the

* Malky Mackay remains the bookies' current favourite to replace Sam
Allardyce. The former Cardiff manager is priced at 7/4 by Bet Victor and
Stan James, with Harry Redknapp (7/2, Paddypower) and Michael Laudrup (8/1,
Stan James) close behind. If you're looking to place a bet, here's where you
will find the top five gambling sites.

Ravel Morrison dismisses reports he's fallen out with Sam Allardyce
Last Updated: 01/05/14 3:01pm

QPR loanee Ravel Morrison has rubbished reports of a feud with West Ham
manager Sam Allardyce. Controversial midfielder Morrison was loaned to
Rangers by Allardyce in February after dropping out of favour despite some
impressive early-season displays for the Hammers. Reports this week claimed
the 21-year-old does not want to return to Upton Park if Allardyce is still
in charge next season. But Morrison took to Twitter to scotch the rumours,
saying: "Papers talk a lot of rubbish I don't care what manager I play under
all I want to do is play football #WHU." Morrison has scored six goals in 15
appearances for Rangers and was named Championship Player of the Month for
March. Under the terms of his loan deal he is available for the forthcoming
play-offs as Harry Redknapp's men attempt to secure promotion back to the
Premier League.

Sam Allardyce labels criticism by West Ham fans as 'nonsense'
Last Updated: 01/05/14 1:57pm

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce has branded fans' criticism of him as
"nonsense" as he targets a third win of the season over rivals Tottenham. A
banner unfurled during last weekend's 1-0 defeat to West Brom - the Hammers'
fourth straight loss - called for Allardyce to be sacked, with negative
tactics cited as the primary reason for supporters' unrest. But Allardyce,
whose side hosts Spurs in Saturday's lunchtime kick-off having already
beaten them at White Hart Lane twice this season, says he sets his teams up
to get the best result possible. "It is a nonsense," he said. "Their
perception is because we haven't won (in four games). "When we went to
Chelsea and they were all very, very happy that was based purely on a
well-structured defensive ploy with little or no football at all. But it was
still hailed as a great performance. "We play to win when we play a game and
if we don't play to win we play not to lose."

"You can't expand and open up against Chelsea because you lose five or 6-0.
"We play to win when we play a game and if we don't play to win we play not
to lose. Our biggest problem is that we haven't drawn enough in between the
wins." Allardyce accepts that constant speculation and pressure on managers
is part of the modern game. "No one wants to see things like that (the
banner at West Brom) and wants to be criticised," he added. "It is what it
is at the moment. It is part of the job today and altogether people keep
telling me how to play and the performances we need to give. "In our last
four games our performances have been good, but without a result comes the
criticism. It is about results, not what you have done for the 90 minutes,
it is what has come out of the end of it. "Of course it (criticism) bothers
you but you don't let it affect your clear thinking. You concentrate on the
players and make sure they continue to strive to get better and better.
"This year, while the league has been extremely entertaining, we have had
ups and downs. It has been a pretty hectic season, a pretty demanding season
for us all, and I think that is shown in the fact that 10 managers have
changed in one season."

By Tony Hanna 1 May 2014 at 09:28
West Ham Till I Die

There has been enough said already about our current playing style under Sam
Allardyce. There has also been a lot of talk about the old "West Ham way".
What is the West Ham way? For me, I have seen the teams of the sixties and
early seventies where the teams played a pass and move game, but the real
excitement was the use of wingers who would take their man on and either
cross mainly to the near post or they would cut inside and pose other
problems. Bobby Moore would also play the long pass from defence to the ever
reliable Geoff Hurst in the centre circle who would hold the ball up and the
attack would be constructed from this ploy. I have also seen the teams of
the late seventies and early eighties where the guile of Devonshire and
Brooking would often cut the opposition to ribbons. Again, neat passing and
one two's would be a feature. Both were different styles with different
players, but both were enjoyable to watch. Attractive passing football with
an emphasis on pass and move and making space, but always with the emphasis
on scoring goals. I am sure if either of these two teams were playing now at
Upton Park the atmosphere would be fantastic, despite the ground being all
seater nowadays.

The "West Ham way" teams did have their faults and weaknesses. The sixties
team had three World Cup winners in it with Bobby Moore, Geoff Hurst and
Martin Peters. They played together as a trio in the West Ham team for some
seven seasons in which time we only finished in the top half of the table
twice with a best placed eighth. The late seventies team with Brooking,
Bonds and Devonshire played three seasons in Division two. Apart from some
fantastically entertaining football at times, the upside that both these
teams brought the fans was some brilliant Wembley successes and of course
the one time we nearly won the League in 1986. Other West Ham teams over the
past fifty odd years have tried to emulate the style with varying degrees of
success and failure. I am sure if the club had been in different
circumstances and not offloaded Ferdinand, Cole, Carrick and Lampard we may
have seen a more recent era in which we could be proud of, but that is just
speculation. Of course one of the ingredients of the "West Ham way" was also
the success of the clubs Academy which supplied so many players to the first
team that we were proud to call "home grown."

However, in none of my time watching West Ham have I seen them play a game
where the tactic was to keep possession for the sake of it. That for me
would never have been the "West Ham way" which has always been an attacking
brand or style. The "West Ham way" has never been about possession at all
costs or "tippy tappy" football. Down here in Australia we get every PL game
live on Pay TV. I would say I watch about six Premier League games on
average per week but there are teams I avoid, depending on who they are
playing, because of the "bore factor." Our own team has been in that bore
category recently but like most of you, I just can't look away from that
particular car crash! The only game this past weekend where I did switch off
after just 30 minutes was the Arsenal v Newcastle game. Arsenal can be very
easy on the eye at times but more often it is, for me, just plain boring.
Swansea can be the same, electric at their best but if you had to watch them
every week this season it hardly gets the pulse racing. Thirty or more
passes between centre backs, full backs and a holding midfielder hardly gets
the ground rocking. I might get slaughtered here for picking on two of the
supposedly "attractive" teams but to be honest I don't like tippy tappy as
much as I don't like hoof football. I am not saying tippy tappy is not
skilful, or indeed worse than hoof ball. In both cases highlighted it has
been relatively successful to date. My view is that it is not entertaining.
Now, if anyone saw the Southampton v Everton game recently - that was what
fans want to see. Great passing, intricate moves and attack minded football.

We currently have two wingers which if at their best can be entertaining.
The downside with this tactic nowadays is to be successful you have to get
several players in the box quickly and if the delivery is poor you can get
hit on the break. The Premier League is an unforgiving place. To emulate the
likes of Manchester City or Liverpool you need serious money which we have
not got. For me, I would like West Ham to use either Everton or Southampton
as their blueprint. Both have enjoyed success on the back of good quality
possession football with limited resources compared to the big clubs. Both
have enjoyed the fruits of their respective Academy's and have also been
shrewd in the transfer and loan market. Both clubs have installed like
minded managers and a footballing philosophy that is being mirrored on the
pitch. That all sounds a bit similar to the West Ham way doesn't it, albeit
with a higher emphasis on possession? When Big Sam's days at West Ham are
finally over I am sure the emphasis will swing back to providing a more
attractive style of football. I just hope it is not tippy tappy for the sake
of tippy tappy. However, the question has to be asked. What style of
football, with West Ham's current resources, would not only be appealing to
the fans but also sustainable to retain our Premier League status?

West Ham boss Sam Allardyce shrugs off supporter abuse and insists he
doesn't fear the sack
May 01, 2014 13:16 By Darren Lewis
The Mirror

Sam Allardyce has dismissed the banner-waving vitriol from angry West Ham
fans as "nonsense". The under-fire Upton Park boss was vilified by
supporters at The Hawthorns last weekend as his side were beaten by West
Brom. One banner at the stadium read: "Fat Sam Out. Killing WHU." Hundreds
of fans also chanted: "F*** off Sam Allardyce!". But 59-year-old Big Sam hit
back: "The banners are a nonsense. "It is not about the way we play - fans
get upset because they haven't won." West Ham have lost their last four
matches, scoring just two goals, sparking concern among the club's top
brass. Allardyce, however, insists he is continuing to plan for next year
and has no fears about the sack. "I would not see any other way than me
continuing next season," he said. "Until either [owners] David Sullivan,
David Gold or Karren ring me to say otherwise. "You have got to remember, we
are all in this together. I am delivering what the owners want. At the
moment we are very, very close to being in the Premier League for another
season and we are trying to stabilise its position to be a club that has the
capabilities to sustain its Premier League status. "The most important thing
is to grow slowly and surely and make sure this club remains in the Premier
League for a long period of time. "When we went to Chelsea and the fans were
very happy because we didn't lose, that was based purely on a very
well-structured defensive ploy with little or no football in possession. "It
was still hailed as a great performance. Again, that points to the fact it
is a results-based business. "Nobody wants to see things like that and
nobody wants to be criticised. But the game is the game and it is what it
is. "Hostility in terms of what you are doing or what you are not doing is
part of the job. "I know what is right and at the end of the day it is a
results-driven business. If we don't get results, we get criticised and we
accept that."


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