Sunday, May 4

Daily WHUFC News - 4th May 2014

Hammers complete Tottenham treble
Two first-half goals see the Hammers secure a third win of the season over
Tottenham Hotspur

West Ham United 2-0 Tottenham Hotspur
Barclays Premier League

West Ham United completed a famous hat-trick over Tottenham Hotspur on
Saturday, as a Harry Kane own goal and Stewart Downing's first for the
Hammers proved plenty to see off ten-man Spurs in the Barclays Premier
League. After Younes Kaboul had seen red for upending Downing when through
on goal, Kane diverted Andy Carroll's header past Hugo Lloris, before
Downing doubled the lead with a well-placed free-kick. But for the
outstanding Lloris, it would surely have been more, as the three points
rubber stamp West Ham's place in the top flight. Sam Allardyce had made just
one change to the side edged out by West Bromwich Albion, with Matt Taylor
replacing Matt Jarvis and Mohamed Diame, in turn, reverting to a wide
midfield role. There was to be an early scare for the hosts, as Kane charged
down Adrian's clearance, though the rebound flew well wide. At the other
end, Winston Reid collected Carroll's knockdown, but could only hook into
Lloris' arms. Back came Spurs, led by Christian Eriksen, who fed Emmanuel
Adebayor, only to see the No10 sidefoot tamely at Adrian. Paulinho, too, hit
the target, but his header from a Kyle Naughton centre was straight at the
Hammers custodian. Moments later and Downing set off down the right, cut
inside, before screwing an effort well wide of the target. A sign of things
to come, as it proved. With 25 minutes gone, the winger beat Danny Rose to a
long ball and skipped across Kaboul, who sent the Hammers man tumbling. Phil
Dowd took his time, before giving the Frenchman his marching orders. Carroll
thumped the resulting free-kick goalwards, forcing Spurs' keeper into an
excellent stop high to his right. There would be no escape, however, as
Carroll met Noble's corner and watched as his header glanced off Kane's head
and past Lloris' despairing dive. The chances continued to come for the
hosts, with Matt Taylor's volley looking destined for the bottom corner, but
for the fingertip intervention of Lloris. But, down to his left once more,
Lloris was powerless to prevent the second. After Michael Dawson had felled
Noble on the edge of the box, Downing's free-kick snuck through the wall,
between Paulinho and Adebayor, as the No23 celebrated his first goal for the

West Ham threatened to make it three soon after the restart, but were
repeatedly denied by the excellent Lloris. An airborne Diame saw his
acrobatic effort repelled by France's No1, before Taylor slotted the rebound
just wide of the upright. With the hour approaching, skipper Kevin Nolan
went close too. Latching on to a Carroll header, he shot on the turn, with
Lloris somehow able to smother and divert it behind for a corner. In
fairness, Spurs grew into proceedings thereafter, although neither
substitute Roberto Soldado nor Aaron Lennon were able to trouble Adrian.
England frontman Carroll and captain Nolan were withdrawn late on to
rapturous Boleyn Ground applause, as the Hammers looked to round off their
home campaign in style. Though Rose very nearly halved the deficit late on,
Adrian's fabulous stop ensured there would be no grandstand finish.

West Ham United: Adrian; Demel, Tomkins, Reid, McCartney; Downing, Noble,
Nolan (Jarvis 86), Taylor, Diame; Carroll (C Cole 84)
Subs not used: Jaaskelainen, Armero, Vaz Te, Collins, Nocerino

Goals: Kane og 27 , Downing 44

Tottenham Hotspur: Lloris; Naughton, Dawson, Kaboul, Rose; Lennon, Paulinho
(Sandro), Sigurdsson (Soldado 66), Eriksen; Adebayor, Kane (Chirices 28).
Subs not used: Friedel, Fryers, Pritchard, Bentaleb
Booked: Naughton, Dawson, Sandro, Soldado

Sent off: Kaboul
Referee: Phil Dowd

Carroll thrilled with derby success
Andy Carroll may have missed the first two Spurs wins this season, but made
his mark on Saturday

Andy Carroll was thrilled to play his part as West Ham United completed
their Tottenham treble on Saturday. The No9 missed out earlier this season
when the Hammers won at White Hart Lane in both league and cup, but made
sure he had an impact at the Boleyn Ground as Sam Allardyce's men finished
their home programme in style. Carroll's 27th minute header flicked off
Spurs man Harry Kane's head on its way past Hugo Lloris to give West Ham the
lead, and he caused centre halves Michael Dawson and Vlad Chiriches no end
of problems with a dominant display. The three point haul was no less than
the Hammers deserved and Carroll admitted that the prospect of beating the
north Londoners for a third time this season was all the motivation they
needed. He said: "The gaffer put it in our heads that if we beat them for
the third time we'd be setting a record, so I think we gave it a little
extra for that and it showed. The performance today was fantastic and we
deserved the three points. "The fans were fantastic and it was great to win
the last game of the season at home for them. The fans gave us a big lift,
and we played the football we know we can play - hopefully we can take that
into next season. "Even before [Kaboul's] sending off I thought we were
dominating and I don't think they caused us any problems. We were confident
all the way through the game and it was great to score so soon after the red
card. "I'm going to claim the goal, every striker would, especially as I
haven't scored too many this season. We'll have to watch it back, but I'll
claim it!"

The Hammers also ensured mathematical safety with the three-point haul, and
Carroll was glad that they finished the job themselves. He added: "It was
very important to make sure we ended here with a result. After all the work
we put in it would have been a shame to end with six games without a win.
"We've put a stop to that, we've got one more left and hopefully we can do
something at Man City. "It's been tough throughout the season, but we've
worked hard. We're in the Premier League for next season and that's all that
matters really."

Big Sam salutes 'outstanding' win
Manager Sam Allardyce paid tribute to an outstanding finale at the Boleyn
Ground against Spurs

Sam Allardyce hailed the perfect end to West Ham United's home Barclays
Premier League campaign, as an outstanding Hammers performance paved the way
for a third successive win against Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday. Stewart
Downing's enterprising run ended with the dismissal of Younes Kaboul after
just 25 minutes, as the West Ham wideman was denied a clear sight of goal.
The opener followed shortly after, when Andy Carroll's header glanced off
Harry Kane on its way in, before Downing himself joined the party with his
measured free-kick finding the bottom corner. That the hosts failed to add
to their tally after the interval owed much to Hugo Lloris, but his heroics
were hardly about to detract from a fantastic afternoon at the Boleyn
Ground. As Big Sam told West Ham TV: "Outstanding! From start to finish
everybody really enjoyed the day. I think the players were a little nervous,
which was a good thing, I think, as that gave them the edge to go out and
perform like they did against a very good Tottenham side. "Even before they
got the player sent off, we had such a positive start in threatening the
opposition's back four, where we felt that their weakness would be. Of
course, when Stewart Downing got through one-on-one, he was going to get a
shot off on the 'keeper. It's definitely a free-kick and definitely a
sending off. "Had Tottenham not had Lloris on the pitch, I might be sat here
with four or five goals. But certainly two was more than enough at
half-time. Pity we didn't get any more, but a fantastic performance overall
and a positive end to the season [at home.] "The squad has had to stick
together through tough times, but on Saturday, to finish off at home with a
win, against our old rivals, our third win on the trot against them, it
really couldn't have finished any better. We did want to do better in
between times, but we're safe, we're in the Premier League, we can grow, we
can build, we can hopefully get better."

Despite having had to endure four successive defeats beforehand, Big Sam
explained that his pre-match message was an entirely positive one, reminding
the players of their prior victories at Spurs. "I told them that it's
time they showed a bit more devilment and a bit more of the passion, as well
as the football and put that into the game," he added. "I asked them to get
on the front foot and really commit to the opportunity to try and beat
Tottenham who are a big top-six side now, and spent big, big money last
year. "We know the success we had against them in the two games we played at
White Hart Lane. So we know how to beat them, because we've done it twice
before, let's make sure we go and do it again and, of course, we've done it
magnificently well."

Victory on Saturday means the Hammers can finally start putting plans into
action for next season, certain that the Club will dine at England's top
table for a third successive campaign. He continued: "We're in the Barclays
Premier League yet again and it's for me, the Joint-Chairmen and
Vice-Chairman Karren Brady to look at the overall picture of the Club. To
sit down and really get the plans underway for, firstly, the pre-season and
then the signings, or re-signing of players who are out of contract. "Then
the big one, new players, who are hopefully targeted and come in wanting to
play for West Ham. Hopefully by the start of next season, we'll have a
better squad than we have now."

But there is, of course, the small matter of a final-day trip to
title-chasing Manchester City still to come. West Ham fans can now head to
the Etihad Stadium carefree with Big Sam grateful for their immense backing
on Saturday. "From start to finish the fans had to plenty to support. When
they have plenty to support, they're thrilled with what they see, they're
behind the players and always have been. "We know that we don't have the
same thrills, the same excitement in professional football without an
atmosphere. The fans are a key element to that atmosphere and Saturday was a
fantastic atmosphere all the way around the ground. "Everybody will be
looking forward to the Man City game, there's no real pressure on us, apart
from being as professional as we possibly can and trying to stop Manchester
City's big day."

West Ham 2 Tottenham 0
3 May 2014
Last updated at 15:08
By Mandeep Sanghera
BBC Sport

West Ham ensured their Premier League safety as they ended a run of four
successive defeats with a comfortable win over 10-man Tottenham. Spurs had
Younes Kaboul sent off for a foul on Stewart Downing before the hosts took
the lead when Andy Carroll's header went in off Harry Kane. Downing extended
the Hammers' lead with a low 20-yard free-kick. Spurs keeper Hugo Lloris
kept the score down as the dominant Hammers eased the pressure on manager
Sam Allardyce. The West Ham fans have voiced their displeasure at
Allardyce's style of play and their team's results, but Upton Park was
joyful following a third win over Spurs this season. Carroll's aerial
prowess was a key element of his side's victory, while the visitors did not
help themselves with some questionable defending. And the defeat will not
have boosted Tim Sherwood's hopes of keeping his job at White Hart Lane,
though the club this week denied claims they had enquired about Ajax coach
Frank de Boer's availability. A top-four place was out of the visiting
side's reach before kick-off, and they are still not assured of a Europa
League spot with Manchester United able to overhaul them. "There was a time
you thought West Ham's season would not end like this, with the home crowd
on their feet giving Sam Allardyce's team a generous round of applause. A
disappointing day for Spurs, who never recovered from the sending-off of
Younes Kaboul."

But they started promisingly as a well-worked counter-attack involving Kane,
Gylfi Sigurdsson and Christian Eriksen ended with Emmanuel Adebayor's
first-time shot being saved by Adrian. However, the home side were causing
problems of their own as they had a penalty appeal for a Michael Dawson
handball turned down before a mis-hit Guy Demel shot looped onto the Spurs
crossbar. And the balance tipped firmly in West Ham's favour on 24 minutes,
when the visitors were reduced to 10 men. Downing was racing clean through
on goal when he was tripped just outside the area by Kaboul, who was sent
off by referee Phil Dowd. From the resulting free-kick, Lloris pulled off a
stunning save to palm Carroll's ferocious strike wide, conceding the corner
from which the home side scored. Carroll's header at the far post went in
off the head of Kane, who was immediately replaced by central defender Vlad
Chiriches. If Sherwood was unhappy with the first of the hosts' goals, he
will have been even more annoyed by the second. After midfielder Mark Noble
was fouled on the edge of the area, Downing's free-kick went through the
Spurs wall and into the bottom corner. And only Lloris prevented Spurs from
suffering a heavier defeat. The France international kept out a Mohamed
Diame overhead kick before thwarting Kevin Nolan at close range after the
midfielder latched onto Carroll's flick-on. Tottenham took until stoppage
time to significantly trouble Adrian, who excellently tipped over a Danny
Rose strike.

Tottenham manager Tim Sherwood: "I think the referee got the red card
decision right. Younes was doing his best to get back at the attacker and
I'm not sure Michael Dawson got round enough to prevent the red card. "It
was a spirited performance from the boys in the second half. We had a few
chances and if we had taken one of them it could have been an edgy finish.
"He (Lloris) is so consistent with his performances. No matter what is going
on around him he seems to just worry about his game and he is top class."

World Cup 2014: Andy Carroll talked up by Sam Allardyce

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce would be "absolutely delighted" if striker
Andy Carroll is part of Roy Hodgson's England World Cup squad this summer.
The 25-year-old's aerial prowess was a key factor in the Hammers' 2-0
Premier League victory over Tottenham. Carroll has scored twice in 15
outings since returning from injury in January. "If Roy decides to take him
along, Andy would be absolutely delighted and so would I. He is as fresh as
a daisy," said Allardyce. "He hasn't had much football this season so it
wouldn't harm him." Carroll, capped nine times, was a constant threat to the
Tottenham defence on Saturday, and his far-post header went in off Harry
Kane to give the Hammers the lead. Stewart Downing's 20-yard free-kick
sealed victory, securing his side's Premier League status with a game to
spare. "Andy has put in a performance that got us rolling. It was a
fantastic header for the goal," said Allardyce.
"His overall performance has to come together, and it came together against

The Hammers boss said there is more to come from Carroll, and hopes he
impresses in their final game of the season, at Manchester City on Sunday,
11 May.
Hodgson will name his 23-man World Cup squad, plus seven standby players,
the following day. Allardyce said: "If he doesn't quite get there, he can
rest this summer and look forward to a full pre-season. "When you miss a
full pre-season, and miss the first half of the season, it is always very
difficult to get the top edge of your performance but he's been getting
there week-in and week-out." Victory, which ended a run of four successive
defeats, helped ease the pressure on Allardyce. "We played really good
football," he said. "For the majority of the game we outplayed Tottenham and
gave a very good account of ourselves and the football we can play. "When
players are in top form like they were against Tottenham, they get the ball
down, they have got confidence and pass it to each other. That's what you

Allardyce on... Tottenham
Filed: Saturday, 3rd May 2014
By: Staff Writer

Sam Allardyce was in upbeat mood following today's early kick-off -
justifiably so, having secured an unprecedented third win in a season over
our dear friends from North London. Here's his post-match press conference,
in full...

Sam, you love a stat. Three wins against Tottenham in three games this
season might be one of your favourites - and the fans' favourite, perhaps?

There's no doubt about that, particularly for the fans. I remember our first
victory, 3-0 at Spurs a long time ago and then in the Capital One Cup. I
thought it would be wonderful if we could do the treble, particularly as we
haven't won for four games - and we did it for a third occasion in our last
home game with an excellent performance from all the players.

I know they went down to ten men, but to take full advantage of that [made
it] a fantastic day for us. A great performance to finish the season in our
last home game and to send the fans home happy. They were right behind the
team from start to finish because they knew the team was playing well and
deserved the victory.

In the end, but for Lloris I think it would have been far more than 2-0 -
but 2-0 is more than satisfying for us against a team who are fighting to be
in the Champions League, fighting to be in that area. To manage to beat them
here again and do the double over them is a great thing for us.

Moods can change very quickly in the game. How nice to be clapping fans at
the end and getting clapped by them?

There's no distinction; one week it's not so good when you're not playing
well and people sound their disapproval. They're quite entitled to do that.
But, they do get behind you when they've got something to get behind. They
didn't stop singing all the way through the game today.

They players have enjoyed being here and they've enjoyed playing on this
stage today, which is what we want them to do. We don't want them to be
fearful when they go out. They gave a wholehearted performance that lifted
everybody in the last game of the season. We couldn't have asked for
anything more than we got today.

Their confidence was very good being on the back of four defeats which can
sometimes affect the team, but they didn't show any fear today?

No they didn't. It was a great start to the game; I always think if the
first part of the game starts well for you it puts the players on the front
foot and all the fears they may have had before are dismissed. They say
we're right in this game, we're all playing well, we've got our first tackle
in or we've got our first pass off, our first cross or shot, and that puts
you in a better frame of mind.

I think we continued from that and got the sending off - deservedly so,
because Stewart [Downing] was going one-on-one with the goalkeeper. I
thought it was in the box and it was going to be a penalty but it wasn't.
The good thing for us was taking advantage of that within the space of two
minutes, getting that very important goal.

From then we really took the game to Tottenham and scoring the goal just
before half time was critical as well. We were even more relaxed and created
even more chances in the second half, but sadly we didn't convert any
because of that goalkeeper. He must have pulled off at least five or six
top-class saves today to prevent Tottenham from conceding more goals.

You said you would wait until you were safe before starting to make
preparations for next season. Does that start immediately now?

Well some preparations are in place without being secured, particularly
pre-season. Players contracts will be discussed between me and the owners as
quickly as possible and then we'll talk to the players. Then it's
recruitment time, who can we find and how we can make the squad better and
in what areas. That's the ultimate goal for me through the summer months.

Do you expect to be busy?

I'm never not busy during the transfer window, don't worry about that! It's
probably the only time I quite like social media, emailing and Skypeing -
stuff like that - because you don't have to do it in your office like the
old days, you can do it whilst you're sat in the sun. When needed you can
come back to the club and meet whoever you need to meet, talk to whoever you
need to talk to and hopefully finalise as many deals as quickly as possible.

I say that every year, but we'll still be waiting on players by the end of
August, there's probably no doubt about that, but as long as we get them in
the end and they're of the right quality then that'll be fine.

Ravel [Morrison] was here today, is he going to be available for QPR's

Yes, we did the loan deal with Harry. He's changed the team an awful lot
today to rest his key players for the first play-offs, by the looks of it.
If Ravel does a good job he's back with us next year, he'll have a big
pre-season with us and we'll see where we go from there.

Are West Ham claiming that first goal for Andy Carroll?

I would! Whether he'll get it or not, I don't know. If I was Andy I would as

West Ham boss Sam Allardyce hails welcome win over Tottenham
Last Updated: 03/05/14 5:11pm

West Ham boss Sam Allardyce saluted a 'fantastic day' for the club as they
ended their four-game losing streak with a 2-0 victory over 10-man Tottenham
at Upton Park. The Hammers boss acknowledged in his programme notes that
this has been a "testing campaign", adding he can understand the supporters'
frustration having failed to pick up a point in April. That run saw the
pressure mount on Allardyce, who was subjected to chants and banners during
last weekend's defeat at West Brom. Those same supporters, however, will
have been in a better mood on Saturday as a Harry Kane own goal shortly
after Younes Kaboul saw red and Stewart Downing's free-kick saw West Ham run
out 2-0 victors against Spurs, their third success of the season over the
north London club. "One week you are not playing so well and people sound
off their disapproval, which they are quite entitled to do, like I've always
said that," Allardyce said. "But they do get behind you when they've got
something to get behind. They don't stop singing, the players enjoyed being
here, they enjoyed playing on this stage today, which is what we want them
to do. We don't want to be fearful when we go out and they really gave a
wholehearted performance to lift everybody today on the last game of the
season. We couldn't have asked for anything more than what we got today. "I
thought it would be wonderful if we could do the treble, particularly under
the circumstances as we haven't won for four games. To do it for the third
occasion in our last home game and do it with an excellent performance by
all the players. "I know they went down to 10 men, but to take full
advantage of that as well was a fantastic day for us, a great performance to
finish the season here and send the fans home happy. "The fans were right
behind the team from start to finish because they knew the team was playing
well and deserved a victory in the end. "But for Hugo Lloris, I think we
would have had for more than 2-0. That is more than satisfying for us,
though, against a team fighting to be in the Champions League, fighting to
get in that area."

West Ham claim 2-0 win over Tottenham at Upton Park
Last Updated: 03/05/14 2:56pm

West Ham returned to winning ways as they recorded a 2-0 victory over
Tottenham in their final home match of the season. The Hammers ended a run
of four successive defeats with a comfortable success over their capital
rivals at Upton Park.

Best of the match

Man of the match: Hugo Lloris. The Tottenham keeper made a series of
outstanding saves to keep the scoreline to a respectable level.
Moment of the match: Younes Kaboul's first-half red card look to be a
correct decision but it undoubtedly turned the game in West Ham's favour.
Attempt of the match: West Ham striker Andy Carroll smashed a free-kick that
was arrowing into the top corner before it was tipped over by Lloris.
Save of the match: Lloris initially did well to punch clear a cross from
Stewart Downing under pressure, and then made a superb low save to his left
to keep out a follow-up shot from Matt Taylor.
Talking point: This win for West Ham has made them safe and improved Sam
Allardyce's position. However, for Spurs counterpart Tim Sherwood, it seems
almost certain he will be replaced at the end of the season.
Goal of the game: Stewart Downing drilled home a low free kick from 20 yards
- his first goal for the Hammers.

The game turned midway through the first half when Younes Kaboul was given a
straight red card for bringing down Stewart Downing when he was through on
goal. The resulting free-kick on the edge of the box from Andy Carroll was
brilliantly tipped over by Hugo Lloris, but the England striker was on hand
to head home the resulting corner, albeit with a little help via Harry
Kane's inadvertent flick-on. The second arrived on the stroke of half-time
and this time Downing was the scorer as he claimed his first goal in West
Ham colours as he curled a free-kick through the Tottenham wall and past
Lloris. Had it not been for Lloris the scoreline could and should have been
greater as he produced wonderful stops from Matt Taylor and Mohamed Diame.
Tim Sherwood's side began well enough, with Kane close to an opening goal
after 52 seconds when Adrian's rushed clearance ricocheted off him and spun
wide. Emmanuel Adebayor was unable to cap a wonderful, flowing team move by
striking tamely at Adrian soon after, before Carroll saw appeals for
handball against Kane fall on deaf ears.
Michael Dawson appeared to then handle from the resulting corner, from which
the ball broke to Guy Demel and his looping strike came off the bar.
Adrian saved a Paulinho header on goal and Downing blazed over as play swung
from end-to-end, until the dimensions changed in West Ham's favour in the
25th minute. A wicked deflection saw the ball looped over Spurs backline
into the path of Downing, who, having left Danny Rose in his wake, continued
on goal until being bundled over by Kaboul. Referee Phil Dowd deemed him to
be the last man and showed a straight red card, with Lloris having to be at
his best to stop Carroll firing home the free-kick. The ball went out for a
corner and when Mark Noble swung it across, West Ham ended their 257-minute
wait for a goal, with Carroll's header going in via a deflection off Kane.
It was a horrible moment for the 20-year-old forward, who was replaced
moments later by defender Vlad Chiriches in a bid to stem West Ham's
increasing momentum. George McCartney came close to netting at the backpost
before Rose almost put into his own goal, with Lloris then doing
exceptionally to turn Matt Taylor's goalbound strike around the post. The
France goalkeeper could only do so much, though, and his team-mates let him
down as West Ham doubled their advantage a minute before the break. Downing
hit a reasonable free-kick that would have hit the wall had Adebayor and
Paulinho not parted, allowing the ball to sneak through past the Spurs
goalkeeper. It was a shocking goal which was almost added to by a Carroll
volley in first-half stoppage time.

West Ham continued strongly after the restart as Mo Diame's overhead kick
produced an exquisite save from Lloris, who did well to stop Kevin Nolan
scoring the follow-up before Taylor curled just wide. The Spurs goalkeeper's
one-man stand continued as Carroll flicked the ball on to Nolan, with the
onrushing goalkeeper spreading himself to block behind. Adrian fumbled a
Christian Eriksen cross in a rare threatening moment for Lloris'
counterpart, with Sherwood bringing on Sandro and Roberto Soldado in a bid
to change the dynamics of the match. The latter quickly had an impact,
receiving a booking after kicking Diame and manhandling Nolan before
striking across the face of goal. Sandro was also at the heart of things in
the closing stages, blocking a shot, picking up a booking and then seeing
appeals for a handball against Taylor ignored. Adrian did wonderfully to tip
over a late Rose strike, which saw West Ham end a 10-match wait for a clean

By Iain Dale 3 May 2014 at 15:54
West Ham Till I Die

"A bad day for the Iain Dale agenda" chirrups a tweet from the only blogger
who didn't want to support the Allardyce poll. What a prat. If I have an
agenda, it is to see West Ham win and play attractive football. Just like
they did today. A great performance, a great team performance and some
superb individual performances. But it was against a team which played for
65 minutes with ten players, so let's not run away with the thought that
this was necessarily a portent of things to come. However, if the board are
judging Sam Allardyce over the last two games of the season, anyone would
have to admit that he got off to a good start.

Having said that the performance might have looked better than it actually
was, because it was against ten men, let's not be churlish. Even before
Kaboul was sent off We looked by far the better team. We had more ideas with
Andy Carroll looking particularly dangerous. From an attacking performance
viewpoint it was one of our strongest of the season with Downing causing
havoc and Diame having a strong game on the right. Carroll won everything in
the air and even with two defenders on him Spurs just didn't know how to
cope with his physical strength. He will no doubt claim the first goal but I
suspect it will go down as an OG. But Carroll could have had another couple
were it not for the outstanding performance of Lloris, the goalkeeper. He
saved at least three goals which some other keepers might well have let in.

In the midfield we looked incredibly strong. Noble put in a performance
which in any other game would have won man of the match, while Matt Taylor
could have nabbed a goal and also returned to the side with an impressive
showing. And wasn't it good to see Stewart Downing celebrating his goal as
if he had won the lottery. It's his first in 44 games. Let's hope he can nab
another next week.

Defensively, apart from the odd shaky moment, we were rarely threatened.
Adrian looked somewhat nervy at times, but at the end of the game pulled off
a tremendous save from Danny Rose. I think it came about five minutes from
the end, and could well have given Spurs the impetus they needed for an

Someone suggested I should re-run the poll after this game and it might have
a very different result. I doubt it very much to be honest. Sensible people
judge a manager on his record over a prolonged period of time. You don't
just do it on a game to game basis. I couldn't be more delighted if Sam
Allardyce stayed as manager and each week we put in this kind of
performance. And if he stays, that will be the Board's hope. Can I see it
happening? In all honesty, no. But I'd be very happy to be proved 100%

Finally, let's bask in the fact that this season we have beaten Spurs three
times with an aggregate score of 7-1. I wonder how many years it will take
for us to repeat that particular feat!

Hammers run riot to secure Premier League spot as Younes Kaboul sees red
May 03, 2014 22:30 By Steve Stammers
The Mirror

Once again, Tottenham Hotspur came to the rescue of Sam Allardyce. The West
Ham manager was under severe pressure going into the London derby that has
always had a special importance to those in the East End. Four successive
defeats had a section of support calling for Allardyce to move on. The
banner saying as much at The Hawthorns eight days ago was not scribbled in
hasty fashion because West Bromwich Albion were ahead. If ever Allardyce
needed a win it was yesterday - and Tottenham duly obliged, just as they had
twice before this season in the Premier League in October and the Capital
One Cup in December. They produced a limp and fragmented performance that
was a reflection of the uncertainty that has surrounded the club since it
became public knowledge that Tim Sherwood's tenure as manager would be
strictly short-term. Younes Kaboul played his part. After 24 minutes, as a
rejuvenated Stewart Downing accelerated towards the Tottenham goal, Kaboul
brought him down. Referee Phil Dowd reflected for a moment and showed Kaboul
a red card.

"The right decision, I am fine with it," said Sherwood. He was also fine
with the acrobatic save from the magnificent Hugo Lloris as Andy Carroll
blasted the free-kick goalwards. But the reprieve lasted less than a minute.
The highly-impressive Mark Noble took the resulting corner, Carroll headed
it back into the danger area and Harry Kane's involuntary touch took it past
Lloris and into the net. But if fortune was not hiding with that goal, the
second on the stroke of half-time was the product of blatant cowardice.
Downing lined up a free-kick some 20 yards out and the Tottenham wall was in
place. But as the shot came in, Paulinho and Emmanuel Adebayor both turned
sideways to avoid contact with the ball which flew past Lloris. In years to
come, Paulinho and Adebayor will likely collect medals. It is safe to say
that on yesterday's evidence, none will be for valour. "Not ideal, it wasn't
great" was the verdict of Sherwood of the defending of the free-kick.
Something of an under-statement, that. And it emerged that Sherwood pointed
out the error of their ways to the players afterwards in a dressing room
inquest. "I spoke to them and pointed out what an error it was. I said that
if the ball hits you in the stomach, it hurts when you go 2-0 down more than
it hurts when you get a ball in the stomach. That hurts for about 30
seconds. "It was always going to be difficult here but I thought we started
alright. The crowd were maybe a bit edgy and waiting for them to slip up. "

The atmosphere may have indeed changed if Adebayor had shown more conviction
with his finish when he through on goal from a Christian Eriksen pass. But a
lack of conviction was evident all afternoon from the Togo international.
"The game changed on the red card," said Sherwood who could at least rely on
Lloris. Tottenham may well want to recruit in the close season, at both
managerial and playing levels. The priority, however, must be to keep
Lloris. But for him, the score could have reached embarrassing proportions.
"He is top drawer," said Sherwood. "People say he wasn't the same after he
was kicked on the head in the game at Everton but that is crap. He doesn't
make many mistakes."

Unlike many of those in front of him with exceptions like Michael Dawson,
Danny Rose and the gifted Eriksen.

Man United's loss could be QPR play-off gain - Redknapp
May 03, 2014 23:00 By Yann Tear 0 Comments

Harry Redknapp is tipping Ravel Morrison to have a big say in QPR's play-off
ambitions. The former Man United midfielder may have been seen as unreliable
by Sir Alex Ferguson and surplus to requirements at West Ham this season,
but the Rangers boss has faith in the 21-year-old. And he believes his
unpredictable talents could take the Hoops back to the Premier League. "He's
going to be an important player for us in the play-offs," said Redknapp.
"Ravel's done very well for us. We've been pleased with him. He's a real
talent. He's got the ability to become a top player, as long as he keeps
focused. "The ability's up there with the best in the country really, in
terms of what he can do. "He's a smashing boy. I've found him a nice kid.
He's not been a minute's problem. "Before I took him, I spoke to [manager]
Lee Clark at Birmingham and he loved him when he had him last year. "Sam
[Allardyce at West Ham] liked him. I think he just felt that he'd gone down
another road and he wasn't going to play so he let him come on loan and I
was grateful for that. "Hopefully he's got a great future. I'd love to see
him do well."

Asked about whether Morrison could one day feature for England, Redknapp
said: "You hope so, you just don't know. It's up to Ravel. He's got to make
sure he keeps his eye on the job at hand."


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