Sunday, May 7

Daily WHUFC News - 7th May 2017

Lanzini – I love playing Spurs!

Manuel Lanzini's third goal in four matches against Tottenham Hotspur helped
West Ham United to a vital 1-0 victory on Friday
The Argentine's only goal ended Spurs impressive winning run in the Premier
It also secured West Ham United's Premier League safety and the midfielder
was delighted to bag such an important strike

There was derby delight for Manuel Lanzini on Friday as his goal earned West
Ham United a 1-0 victory against London rivals Tottenham Hotspur at London
Stadium. It was the Argentine's third goal in four games against Spurs, and
the all-important strike not only ended Spurs' impressive Premier League
winning run and possibly their title challenge, but also ended any
relegation fears for the hosts. On the back of nine wins in the league,
there seemed to be no stopping Spurs, but with the confidence of last year's
home victory behind the hosts, along with the current form of four games
unbeaten in the top flight, Slaven Bilic's men had belief. And the deafening
scenes when Lanzini crashed home in the 65th minute were to be forever
remembered. The Jewell was delighted to score such an important goal - his
ninth in London derby clashes since arriving in the Premier League the
summer before last. He said: "It was amazing! It's very important for us, so
I'm so pleased to score such a goal like this. "I like playing against
Tottenham and scoring against them! I've scored three important goals
against them for me and for the team, so it was great to score tonight of
course. "More important for me is not the goal though, it's that the team
played very well. Tottenham are one of the best teams in the Premier League
and to win is very important for us and for us to keep going."

Thanks to the massive victory, the Hammers climbed into the top half of the
Premier League table on Friday night with their tally so far of 42 points.
And Lanzini spoke of the importance of his strike, also praising the fans
for driving the team forward against Mauricio Pochettino's men. "It was a
very good win. We played very good and these points are very important for
us, and it's important for us to keep going. "It's a great win for the
manager who is a great coach, and he talked with us a great deal before the
game. He is amazing. "The fans also were amazing and they are always like
this. They are singing all of the time and they were perfect tonight as they
always are."

'You could really feel it on the pitch'

Sam Byram praises London Stadium atmosphere during Friday's 1-0 Premier
League win over Tottenam
Victory took West Ham United up to ninth in the table and made them
mathematically safe
Byram played his part in Manuel Lanzini's winner and put in a strong
defensive performance

Sam Byram is always smiling. Go on, take a look at every photograph of the
West Ham United full-back. Whether he is playing, training, walking or
having his lunch, he is ALWAYS smiling. And Byram's trademark grin was wider
than ever after the Hammers' 1-0 Premier League over Tottenham Hotspur on
Friday evening.
"I think this game means the most to the team and the fans as a whole, and
it was definitely the best atmosphere I've felt at the new ground," he told "You could really feel it on the pitch, among the players and the
fans, especially when the final whistle went! "We've got a tight squad and a
squad full of quality, so when people are injured there are others to step
in. Everyone is working together – players, staff and fans – and you could
feel that in the stands and in the dressing room after the game. "We've got
Liverpool next, another one of the big clubs, and we showed against
Tottenham what we're all about. We've got two games left, we're in ninth,
which shows how tight it is and how quickly it can change. We're looking up
now, rather than down."
Byram was recalled to the starting XI in place of Edimilson Fernandes and
repaid Slaven Bilic's faith with arguably his best performance in a Claret
and Blue shirt.
Not only did the No22 keep Spurs winger Son Hueng-Min quiet, but he also
supported the attack regularly and played his part in Manuel Lanzini's
unforgettable second-half winner. "To be fair, the lads have done well to
keep two clean sheets and look solid, so I was happy to come back in and I
think I've shown I can play that position as well," said Byram, who made two
key passes and completed four clearances and 79.3% of his passes overall.
"We could have won by more. Jonny [Calleri] had a few chances and Ash
[Fletcher] had a good chance at the end, and I think we limited them to very
little, which showed how structured we were as a team. It wasn't just the
back five and the goalie, the whole team grafted and it was well-deserved.
"Against Everton and Stoke we created chances, maybe not as many as we did
against Spurs, but we created chances and got our reward."

One player who certainly grafted was lone striker Calleri, who gave Toby
Alderweireld and Jan Vertonghen plenty to think about with his movement,
strength and hold-up play. On another night, the Argentinian would have
capped an influential display with a goal, but Byram was not complaining.
"Jonny put a good shift in," he confirmed. "He's strong, he gives his all
and I'm delighted he has done well. "In training, he's a very aggressive
player and you need that in your team. I am sure the goals will come and
hopefully he can get one next week."

Stat's A Fact - Lanzini loves London derbies

Ain't nobody like Lanzini, as the song goes. And it couldn't be any closer
to the truth. Once again the Argentinian was on hand to score the decisive
goal in yet another London derby as West Ham United beat Tottenham Hotspur
1-0 at London Stadium on Friday evening.

After a goalless first half, where the visitors were limited to one shot on
target, the Hammers came out of the blocks quickly in the second half. The
deserved goal eventually came on the 65th minute as Manuel Lanzini latched
on to the end of Sam Byram's deflected cross to turn the ball past Hugo

Jonathan Calleri soon went close to doubling the Hammers lead and Ashley
Fletcher also had a chance late on – indeed Slaven Bilic's side could have
won by more. The Hammers had a total of 13 shots during the course of the
match, two more than Tottenham.

For Spurs, who before Friday night had scored 102 goals in all competitions,
they forced only a couple of saves out Adrian and struggled to break through
West Ham's impressive back three. The likes of Harry Kane, Dele Alli and
Christian Eriksen were fairly anonymous throughout.

Lanzini's eighth goal was his fourth against London opposition this season –
two of those coming against Spurs. His penalty in the return fixture at
White Hart Lane in November was followed up by Friday's close-range effort.

His record extends beyond 2016/17, however, and Friday's strike was his
ninth in all competitions against clubs from the Capital since joining West
Ham in 2015.

The Hammers' number ten now has three career goals from just four matches
against Spurs and has only a better scoring record against Crystal Palace in
the Premier League.

He was voted 'Man of the Match' by West Ham United supporters on Twitter and
was a central figure in the all of the home side's attacking opportunities.
Lanzini's four dribbles was the most by any West Ham player and bettered
only by England international, Dele Alli; he had the joint-most attempts on
goal with three, and made 33 passes at a success rate of 86 per cent.

Rather remarkably, Lanzini also made the most amount of tackles on the West
Ham side, highlighting Slaven Bilic's perfectly executed plan to limit the
available space for Spurs in the midfield.

Since January, he has scored five goals and made two assists and with two
games remaining in the season, there is no doubt he will want to add to it.
The Hammers' final match at London Stadium takes place on Sunday 14 May
against Liverpool, before they make the trip to Burnley's Turf Moor on the
final day. With the club's Premier League status now secured, Slaven Bilic
will demand that the season ends in a positive fashion and Lanzini will
undoubtedly play a central role in fulfilling that.

Noble - I'm speechless

Mark Noble captains Hammers to first London Stadium victory over Tottenham
Skipper hails 'unreal' atmosphere generated by Hammers fans
No16 wants to end the season on a high by carrying this victory into meeting
with Liverpool next week

As early birthday presents go, this one will take some beating for Mark
Noble. The West Ham United skipper turns 30 on Monday, but had reason to get
the celebrations started a couple of days in advance after leading his team
to a magnificent derby victory over Tottenham Hotspur on Friday night. Noble
was thrilled to get one over the Hammers' rivals, thanks to Manuel Lanzini's
second half goal, and he thought it was a fully merited result. "I'm
spechless really," he beamed. "The boys were fantastic - it was a great
performance from every one of us. We needed to be at 100 per cent and we
were. "It's great for the manager and for the fans. It was fantastic and I
can see them walking into the offices or wherever they work on Monday
morning with broad shoulders, their chins up high and a massive smile on
their face. "We deserved it, we played so well. We had a couple of chances
early doors and it was just a really good team performance. We know we can
play like that, but it's been a tough season and the boys have dug in

The Hammers have been waiting for a Premier League victory against one of
the division's title chasers, and Noble said it couldn't have come at a
better time than Friday. He added: "Getting that kind of result against
Tottenham makes it even more special. We should have beaten them at their
place. Two goals in two minutes at the end really hurt. "The atmosphere on
Friday was unreal, and we've beaten Spurs at home which puts us safe. I
don't like saying the word safe because it actually puts us in the top half
of the table. If we win next week we could finish one or two places below
where we finished last year. "At the end of the day, let's hope we can
finish strongly."

Lanzini's winner took his tally against Spurs to three from four games - and
nine in London derbies since joining the Club two summers ago - and Noble
was full of praise for the Argentine. He continued: "I love Manu. He's great
at scoring in derbies, isn't he? He's our little gem as they call him and
that's why we're in the team, to do the hard work and grind it out and let
Manu be our special little player. "The last two games I've played here,
especially, against Swansea and Tottenham, have really started to feel like
home. "I couldn't have asked for a better outcome than Friday, coming back
into the starting line-up for a game like that."

Slav - We fully deserved it

Slaven Bilic hails his West Ham United team after 1-0 win over Tottenham
Hotspur at London Stadium
Hammers up to ninth in Premier League table after extending unbeaten run to
five matches
Victory ensured West Ham's safety and also badly damaged Spurs' title hopes

It happened again for Slaven Bilic as his West Ham United side severely
dented Tottenham Hotspur's Premier League title challenge for the second
season in succession. The manager was brimming with pride after Manuel
Lanzini's second-half goal completed the greatest night in London Stadium's
short but eventful history. With a 54,000-strong Claret and Blue Army
roaring them on, the Hammers soaked up everything Spurs could throw at them,
and could arguably have won more comfortably had Hugo Lloris not saved
superbly from Jonathan Calleri and Ashley Fletcher. "We played against a
great team, a team in form, a team which had won nine out of nine and all
that, but we deserved it," said the manager, whose team are up to ninth in
the table. "We defended with numbers and we did exactly what we wanted them
to do, but it's the players who done it on the pitch. "Apart from that
situation in the first half, when they had three chances from one attack,
they didn't hurt us really and we defended great. "Also in the second half
we were taking the ball out to them and the goal helped us, of course. Then
after the goal they lost a bit of composure because one goal was not enough
for them, as they needed to score two. "They lost a bit of calmness that
they had and the goal helped us to gain confidence. After the goal, we had
many, many situations, not just Calleri's chance, but situations when we
were one-on-one against the defender, but unfortunately we didn't score.
"There was always a chance we were going to concede because they were
throwing bodies up front and putting strikers on, but we were magnificent
and we fully deserved it."
Bilic was asked if 'character' was the most important trait shown by his
players in beating a Tottenham team which arrived on a run of nine straight
wins. While the manager agreed the mental strength shown by the Hammers was
important, he also pointed to their ability to stick to a tactical plan and
create clear chances against a previously very solid Spurs defence. "First
of all, starting with the skipper Mark Noble, who was tremendous, then the
goalkeeper and back three and the line of four in front of them protecting
them and stopping the passes getting through to [Dele] Alli and [Christian]
Eriksen. Then we had Calleri up front who was, in the second half,
brilliant. "It was character, of course, determination and character, but
you can't win against a good team like them with only character. You need
quality as well and we had good patterns. "We beat them last year with the
same system, and in the game earlier this season at White Hart Lane,
although we lost it 3-2 when were leading 2-1 with two or three minutes to
go, it was also the system we used to stop them. "Tonight was not a night
for egos, and we showed collectively what West Ham United is all about."

Written by Steven McCarthy @StevenMcCarthy9

Transfers are a funny game, as I have seen over and over again the past year
or two Ex seems to get no end of crap for simply keeping us informed and up
to date! Now with this I am going to take my chance for complete hyperbole
and outline what I think we should do in the summer. First off is one that
saddens me to say but, I would look to sell Carroll for as much as possible.
With the caveat that it is only to an overseas team (and pray it is one with
deep pockets at that) because knowing the West Ham way if we didn't, he
would score against us every single time we play him. I appreciate that
Carroll is a real handful on his day and the athleticism he shows at times
is simply awesome, however I feel that on the big wages he is and with such
an awful injury record, he simply does not produce and appear enough to
warrant a place next season for me.

I also have a problem with the argument that there are no other players out
there like him, because a prime example of this would be Llorente at
Swansea. He has taken time to find his feet but he has scored goals this
season with the exact same attributes to his game. Should Swansea go down, I
think it would be great business for the club and hopefully turn out a bit
better than the current World Cup winner in the squad! If we got a decent
sum for Carroll I would say go for Bas Dost from Wolfsburg, another great
physical player in a Wolfsburg side . This would take care of having a big
physical presence up top, but why just settle for the one. If ex is correct
that Batshuayi is our top target then I think we should go all out to sign
him, although I think he would certainly require a 25 million + bid, I think
with a player of his age and promise, you only have to look at the figures
for a player like Lukaku being bandied about to say that it would be worth a
Would I take Defoe on a free?
On a free, yes. But I have reservations, I still remember crying when we got
relegated and then throwing a strop when he left (I was 11). Despite his
lack of goals recently, I think he has the technique and athleticism to be a
handful for at least a season or two and would get 10 goals a season easily.
With regards to a last striker, if we are looking for a loan as the owners
love! I would go for Iheanacho from City, I have heard that Guardiola rates
him highly however with Aguero and Jesus I see it being a struggle for him
to getin the side and a loan would suit both parties.

Forwards: Llorente, Batshuayi, Defoe, Bas Dost and Iheanacho


Midfield wise, I would sell Noble and bring in some of the youngsters with a
point to prove. I love Noble as he has been a great ambassador for the club
and presence in the side, however I am somewhat sure that he is simply not
good enough for a top half team. And although only showing recent glimpses,
I think Nordtveit has shown that he is worth giving another season. Against
Everton and Stoke, he was good in the air, physically strong, showed a good
range of passing and read the game particularly well! I like Ruben Loftus
Cheek and Chalobah of Chelsea as the players we could bring in somewhat
cheaply for that Central midfield position (and cover in defence if needed)
I think limited playing time this season is a worry for both these players
this season and if we think that Obiang and Kouyate are going to be the
central partnership next season, then having youngsters of pace, presence
and quality would be a real string to our bow.

Payet replacement:
This is a big one for us, as having that player who can just instantly turn
a game and create something from nothing is pretty much all at the feet of
Lanzini currently. I won't waste any more time talking about the snake, so
let's move onto who we could replace him with, and I think the main player
West Ham fans would like to see is probably Sigurdsson of Swansea. He is a
proven premier league player who regularly delivers on set pieces and
creates a chance with an inch perfect pass. Is he as explosive or dynamic as
Payet, I would say no, but would he work his socks off for the team and
consistently perform, for me it is a yes!
I think I am in the minority with my next point, but unless a good offer
came in, I would keep a hold of Snodgrass. If ever we were looking for a
player to show off a bit of strength in depth then I think having Snodgrass
in rotation would display exactly that. He was on fire at Hull and I think
that he deserves a bit more time, you don't suddenly lose the ability to
score goals in this league, particularly when you were playing in that
injury riddled Hull side and I think a performing Snodgrass would be an
asset to any side outside the top 5 or 6.

Tore is off at the end of the season – thank god!
Feghouli is an interesting one, he works hard, but would I keep him? I think
that he works hard, but if we got a decent offer, then I would happily let
him go.
If it were my choice, Sigurdsson would be top due to the Premier League
experience, however I think there is another French League player available
with Lyons, Rachid Ghezzal being available at the end of the season on a
free transfer. He is a left footed right winger who loves to cut inside,
quick and surprisingly physical player with an eye for goal, I think
although he could take time to settle, he could potentially be the player
closest in quality to Payet available and realistically available to us. His
set pieces are strong, he delivers good balls and I think that he would be a
really great buy for us.

Midfielders: Loftus-Cheek, Chalobah, Sigurdsson, Ghezzal


Where do I start on this one, we have been abysmal this year at the back and
I think that although Arthur Masouaku has shown real quality in the last few
games there are very few who can hold there heads high this year. People are
forgetting that we have Ogbonna to return, and although he and Reid would be
our ideal centre partnership I would say that our strength in depth is still
up for question. I love Ginge as much as any Hammers fan, however is he
really a player I see challenging for a starting position or being a quality
cover should anybody pick up a knock. No, to be brutally honest he is
lacking in too many departments like pace, passing and touch to be solid in
this league if we want to progress. Fonte….let's just hope he improves,
because having only just signed I cannot see anything realistically
happening this window! I think the glaring position for every fan is Right
Back, as an out and out right back I like Byram and see him as a solid
option, so why not buy in somebody like Mensah to be young competition. He
is an absolute beast – and has the potential to be everything Billic had
hoped Antonio would be. 6ft 4, quick, good in the air and built like a brick
outhouse, I think he could be a fan favourite anywhere! I am a fan, he is a
tough tackling and often no nonsense player, going forward, I am not too
sure about him as he hasn't got the game time with the excellent Valencia
infront of him. However the pace, leap and height he possesses will always
always make him a threat going forward from set pieces at the bare minimum.
Mourinho seem's to love berating the defenders in his squad and I think that
barring wage demands, a move for any of the once 'Great Hopes' of Smalling
and Jones (dreading that after his awful acting against us!) would be a
smart move in my eyes, given the versatility they possess across the back
line! Kevin Malcuit is the player I see us linked with frequently at the
moment, and whilst I really like his pace and attacking attributes, I feel
that he could be a player who really struggles to find his feet in this
league. Although he is pretty much 6ft tall, he is slight of frame and often
wanders too far forward from defensive positions, which at 25 could be
something that is too etched into his game to change. That being said, I
would take him if we were playing our 5 at the back system with him as a
wingback if it were for a sensible price.

Defenders: Fosu-Mensah, Smalling or Jones and Malcuit for a potential
attacking wing back.


As for Goalkeeper, I was really gutted to hear that it seems Pickford looks
to be on his way to Everton! A young English goalie with great promise is
something I think all Hammers fans would love to see and if possible, I
would do all I could to hijack the deal (as we so often seem to be the
victim of!). However if we want an English keeper the only realistic option
I see is Tom Heaton from Burnley, and he is 31. The other name I see us
linked with, Joe Hart is 30. Both are great keepers, but I think Heaton
would demand a large fee and Hart would require huge wages so I would look
elsewhere. Personally, I would go for Begovic at Stoke, who would only just
turn 30 this year. I think that with Stoke looking to make Butland no.1 a
player of his quality would not be happy playing second fiddle yet again. As
for the current keepers we have, I would keep Adrian and let Randolph leave
if he was unhappy being second choice. I love Adrian and although he has a
mistake in him every so often, I feel his love of the club, fan interaction
and shot stopping ability on the pitch more than make up for that!
And who can forget that penalty….

Goalkeeper: Begovic and Adrian to be given an extended contract

However, I will end the column with my main goal for the summer:
Keeping a hold of Lanzini and Antonio – we all know the quality that Lanzini
possesses, but Antonio is one who I feel we simply must keep at the club.
He gives everything out on the pitch every time he plays, he is a threat
from set pieces, strong, great leap and always finding a bit of space in the
area. I think he is a great player and looks like he improves in his weakest
area – his touch, every game I see him in!
At the moment I am hoping we finish as high as possible and look to take the
steps as fans to make the London Stadium our home! COYI's!!!!

Many thanks


Written by @farehamhammer

"You're not West Ham anymore" "You have sold your soul for this shithole
"are just two of the taunts, sung to us Hammers fans following The Club's
move from The Boleyn Ground to The London Stadium. I had mixed feelings
about our move from The Boleyn Ground to The London Stadium from the off. I
was of the opinion that The East Stand could be developed bringing our
capacity to 46,000, which I felt would have been just perfect for a Club our
size. I did not for one minute believe in the pie in the sky nonsense, that
moving would enable us to reach 'the next level'. Or players would be lining
up to play at the 'Iconic 'London Stadium. That was sheer piffle in my eyes.
Bar one or two, if you are willing to pay the selling club what they want,
and meet a player's wage demands, they sign for you. Whether you play at The
Boleyn Ground, The London Stadium or on Mars is totally irrelevant

However as much as I loved The Boleyn Ground ,from getting off at Upton Park
Station ,stopping for a couple in The Queen's.Then on to Ken's Café for an
all-day breakfast, arriving at the ground as the players were warming up. I
never tired of making the journey from Fareham. But let's not kid ourselves,
not every game was like the final game against Manchester United. At times
you could hear a pin drop, on other occasions the mood would turn ugly, with
fans turning on our own players with taunts of: "You're not fit to wear the
shirt". Neither was the ground a fortress, we have suffered some horrific
results and real pastings to be truthful. The after match experience of
getting to The Queen's ,then having to march all the way down to the flats,
go around a pole then come all the way back up to Upton Park Station used to
get on my nerves. When it became obvious that there would be no turning back
I accepted reality, although I had reservations about how far away the pitch
was from the stands. I was also prepared for teething problems, as Saints
fans warned me how they struggled to adapt when they moved from The Dell to
St Marys.

The big problem was expectations were raised with The Club saying three or
four top signings arriving, added to the fact that we had just come off an
incredible season. As a result fans had really high expectations. When
expectations were not met transfer wise, a section of the fans were very
disillusioned before a ball was kicked. Added to the fact that results on
the pitch were poor, The Stadium migration problem became a major issue.
Which the media was very quick to expose, as in their eyes West Ham had been
'gifted' a Stadium at the tax payer's expense. Problems there certainly were
and some remain. On existing stewarding, or not enough stewards which led to
chaos in the stands. Fights with away supporters or West Ham fans on West
Ham, ugly scenes that terrified small kids. Not on. Some got upset because
they got called 'customers' and Popcorn gets sold at the ground. Whatever
for ?In my Grandfather's time they sold Bovril, and used to stand so tightly
next to each other they were like sardines .In order not to lose their
standing place ,fans would piss on each other's legs !Times change !They
sell popcorn so what ?A lot of the fans from visiting clubs, would come up
to the ground looking to start trouble. No doubt having watched Green Street
too many times .Although far from perfect the match day experience at The
London Stadium has got better. The Stewards have got a lot better for

Some fans have posted photo after photo or videos of each stage of The
Boleyn Ground being demolished. Almost like a deceased favourite
relative…sadly like the relative…The Boleyn is not going to rise from the
dead. BUT…our memories of the great place will stay with us forever.
Irrespective if we are pro move or against the move, are anti Gold and
Sullivan or pro Gold & Sullivan, we are all passionate and extremely loyal
West Ham fans. At this moment of its great history, West Ham United play at
The London Stadium. We have got to make the move work, or we could well end
up like Coventry. Make no mistake this is a MASSIVE transfer window, and The
Board have got to deliver! NO excuses! Sob stories about Financial Fair Play
don't wash anymore. No other club makes a issue about them. Rules have
become relaxed about them, and some legal experts reckon they are
unenforceable anyway. Get the right signings in, get off to a good start
next season and we will be living in the land of hope and dreams. This time
dreams made at The London Stadium home of West Ham United. And The Boleyn?
Never to be forgotten! That is where we our love affair with our great club
started after all

We are more than a football club, we're a way of life!



Written by @SamRoyden

West Ham fans far and wide are waking up this morning knowing that because
of heroics last night, we've potentially damaged Spurs chances of winning
the Premier League. This season has been a disappointing one to say the
least but nights like last night remind us fans why we go through the pain
of supporting West Ham when we out smart and out play our London rivals, who
have been strong all season. Before the game, we weren't mathematically safe
from relegation and Bilic's job was broadcasted by the media saying he was
on thin ice. I think it's safe to say that the result last night could have
saved his position as manager for next season. With only two games remaining
of the season, we can breathe a sigh of relief after flirting with
relegation at times during the season and ending the season on a high at
home to Liverpool and away to Burnley on the last game of the season.

Anthony Taylor was the appointed referee for last night's London derby and
Taylor has officiated four West Ham games and six Tottenham games so far
this season. Surprisingly it was Taylor's first game officiating at the
London Stadium.

West Ham have been on the receiving end of some poor refereeing decisions
this season, especially against the big teams. In January, Sofiane Feghouli
was unfairly sent off by Mike Dean for a challenge on Manchester United's
Phil Jones, which was eventually overturned by the FA's Regulatory
Commission. Anthony Taylor needed to ensure he remained calm for a highly
anticipated and heated London derby.

Big derbies always come with big refereeing decisions and Taylor certainly
had a few to make in the first half. As expected, both teams were fully
committed with their tackles, some of the tackles were fair and some of them
not. The first big challenge of the first half came from the young Spurs
midfielder Eric Dier. Dier challenged and won the ball with a very strongly
sliding challenge against West Ham's Cheikhou Kouyaté. This set the
precedent for the remainder of the half.

Taylor is a very experienced referee and his positioning has always been a
strength of his and as crazy as it may sound, it's so important to take up
the right position to give yourself the best possible view of any incident.
Taylor was in a great position to see Victor Wanyama catching Manuel Lanzini
after the ball had gone. The first caution of the game went to Kyle Walker
after the Spurs right back caught Lanzini in a 50/50 challenge. In all
fairness to Walker, he managed to nick the ball first and caught Lanzini on
the follow through. Lanzini ended up coming off worse and I think it was
Walkers reaction when Lanzini went to ground that made the decision up for
Taylor to brand the yellow card.

Mark Noble is a player that lives and breathes for the big occasions and
this game was no different. Noble earned himself a yellow card after the
West Ham captain slid into a challenge incredibly late on Dier, wiped him
clean off his feet. This was no doubt a yellow card and Noble had to be
careful for the remainder of the game

The biggest talking point of the first half was Hugo Lloris challenge on
Manuel Lanzini. The ball was there to win, with Lloris rushing out off his
line to challenge for the ball whilst Lanzini just outside the penalty area.
In a split second, both Lloris and Lanzini were on the floor and Taylor had
a decision to make. When I first saw the challenge, I thought it was 100% a
foul by Lloris and the Spurs goalkeeper would have been walking down the
tunnel after being sent off for denying an obvious goalscoring opportunity.
However, after seeing the replays, which we get the luxury of, it is very
clear that Lloris makes the slightest of touches on the ball with his knee
and then his follow through caught Lanzini. Even though Lloris does make
contact it the ball, the challenge was reckless. I think he was very lucky
to make any contact with the ball. I do feel that the laws of the game are
slightly skewed when it comes to goalkeepers and especially when they make
challenges like this. It's hard to imagine that if this challenge was made
anywhere else on the field, would referees actually blow for a foul as it's
reckless? Goalkeepers are sometimes over protected by referees especially
for corners but I think the game has moved on where goalkeepers are making
last ditch challenges to save the opposition from scoring. However, I cannot
express how difficult this decision was to make, especially under immense
pressure in a game like this. Taylor could have very easily sent Hugo Lloris
off if Taylor wasn't in the position he was and didn't see the marginal
contact by the Spurs keeper. Taylor remained calm and didn't guess the
outcome, instead he consulted his assistant referee and as a team they got
the decision correct and awarded a goal kick after Kouyate skied his shot
over the bar.

I noticed throughout the half that Kyle Walker was going down very easily
under minimal pressure. Kouyate and Cresswell were both guilty of making
unnecessary contact with Walker, with the Spurs man hitting the deck at
every opportunity. Winston Reid was the final player cautioned in the first
half after the West Ham centre back was stepping up with the ball into
midfield and after a heavy touch, Reid lunged to win the ball back and
caught Victor Wanyama on the top of the boot. A challenge like this is 9/10
always going to be a cation as the player is lunging into a challenge
desperate to win the ball back.

Anthony Taylor had a relatively quiet second half compared to the first
half. There were a handful of cautions including Manuel Lanzini for
excessive celebration. Lanzini, who's only goal was enough to win the game,
was booked by Anthony Taylor for over celebrating. In my opinion, I didn't
see anything wrong with Lanzini's celebration at first. Lanzini crossed his
arms to signify the famous 'irons' symbol and ran into a corner where West
Ham fans were celebrating. However, there appeared to be an issue with West
Ham fans and the advertising boards in that corner, as West Ham fans in the
rows above the advertising boards started celebrating. West Ham fans in the
front couple of rows found themselves on the pitch. It's important to ensure
that excessive celebration doesn't cause supporters risk of injury and
because of this, I believe this is why Taylor cautioned Lanzini.

The fourth and final West Ham caution went to Sam Byram after the young West
Ham right back pulled back the advancing Son Heung-min's shirt. This type of
foul is always going to result in a yellow card so it was a straight forward
decision from Anthony Taylor. The final booking of the game went to Kieron
Trippier for intentionally tripping substitute Ashley Fletcher in the final
stages of additional time. The game was very nervy in the final stages and
five added minutes of additional time didn't help. I thought to myself that
this seemed a lot for a second half which no injuries, however when you take
into consideration the five substitutes, West Ham's goal celebration and the
West Ham fans holding onto the ball in the stands for a Spurs corner, it
made sense to me and was the correct time allocation.

In my opinion, I felt that Anthony Taylor's performance was good. Taylor was
merely a spectator in the second half but his first half was tough with some
big decisions which he handed well. There were times were he missed a push
or a clumsy challenge which rightly infuriated the West Ham fans but when
you take into consideration the decisions he did get right, he performed
well in a difficult fixture.

Match Report by @WestHamAmerican

West Ham beat Tottenham 1-0 tonight in an early May Premier League match
which might represent the long-awaited "signature win" for the home club in
the new London Stadium. For West Ham, they defeated their top London rival
and possibly secured safety from relegation in one single night. For Spurs
it might be the end to their hopes of overtaking Chelsea for the Premier
League championship this year.

Mauricio Pochettino's side arrived in East London after winning nine
straight matches in the league. West Ham, devoid of attacking options with
Andy Carroll and Diafra Sakho chronically injured and Michael Antonio out
for the season, we where merely hoping to keep the match respectable.

Early on, the Hammers played behind the ball but made the most of their
counter attacking opportunities. Six minutes into the match Manuel Lanzini
took an Andre Ayew cross and delivered it wide of goal.

The London Stadium crowd felt ill during a later exchange where Harry Kane
shot on goal which was deflected by Adrian. Dele Alli's rebound shot was
blocked by Jose Fonte, and a third immediate attempt was taken by Kane, only
to be saved by Adrian. Spurs were forced to settle for an unsuccessful
corner kick out of that exchange.

Despite the overwhelming possession advantage by the visiting club, West Ham
retired at the half with a 0-0 score and a raucous crowd of supporters
encouraging their club.

The fans were almost rewarded immediately after the break, as Ayew took
service from Sam Byram but sent the ball way high of the goal.

The West Ham supporters had to wait until the 65th minute of play before
they were rewarded for their enthusiasm, as Aaron Cresswell sent a cross
into traffic and it touched both Byram and Ayew before it fell to the feet
of Manual Lanzini at the six yard mark. He immediately sent the ball past
Hugo Lloris, and sent the stadium into a loud frenzy.

With chances on both sides, the Hammers were able to milk the final 35
minutes of play plus five additional minutes of time, and the celebration
was on in East London. (A few Chelsea supporters took notice as well.)

And just like that, West Ham temporarily slides into 9th place. After a
brutal season after the sky-high expectations of the pre-season, the loyal
fans at West Ham have hope and some enthusiasm going into a very important
summer transfer period.

Of note tonight, in addition to Lanzini's performance, his fellow Argentine,
Jonathan Calleri put in a hard-working shift. And what can be said about
Adrian? Three consecutive clean sheets. The beloved Spaniard certainly is
having his say about whether a new goalkeeper is needed in the summer. A
quick stop in the top half of the table is an unexpected turn of events.
With two matches remaining, hope for the future is the best thing West Ham
can sell at this point.

West Ham: Adrian, Fonte, Reid, Collins, Byram, Kouyate, Noble, Cresswell,
Lanzini (Fernandes 90), Ayew (Snodgrass 84), Calleri (Fletcher 89)
Subs not used: Randolph, Nordtveit, Rice, Feghouli
Bookings: Noble, Reid, Lanzini, Byram
Goal: Lanzini 65

Spurs: Lloris, Walker (Trippier 80) , Alderweireld, Vertonghen (Dembele 67),
Davies, Dier, Wanyama (Janssen 73), Son, Eriksen, Alli, Kane.
Subs not used: Vorm, Wimmer, Sissoko, Nkoudou
Bookings: Walker, Trippier
Referee: Anthony Taylor

West Ham's Cheikhou Kouyate to have wrist surgery and miss final two games
of the season
By Sky Sports News HQ
Last Updated: 06/05/17 4:19pm

West Ham midfielder Cheikhou Kouyate will miss the rest of the season to
undergo surgery on an injured wrist. The 27-year-old has been playing with
the problem all season, across 36 appearances in all competitions and three
internationals with Senegal at the African Nations Cup. The decision to have
the operation has been taken after West Ham mathematically assured their
place in the Premier League next season with a 1-0 win over Tottenham on
Friday Night Football. Kouyate will miss the Hammers' penultimate match
against Liverpool at the London Stadium as well as their final day trip to
face Burnley at Turf Moor. Kouyate is contracted at West Ham until 2021
after signing a new long-term contract in March 2016. He joined the East
London side from Anderlecht for £7m in June 2014.

Slaven Bilic reveals Chelsea's Nemanja Matic sent him a very cheeky text
before West Ham's 1-0 win over Spurs
The Blues midfielder has to get his wallet out now but he isn't going to
care one little bit
The Mirror
16:35, 6 MAY 2017UPDATED17:55, 6 MAY 2017

West Ham boss Slaven Bilic has revealed Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic
sent him a cheeky text message ahead of their game with Tottenham. The match
was watched anxiously by Blues players and fans alike, given that Spurs are
the only team capable of preventing them from winning the title this season.
And much to the delight of Chelsea supporters, the Hammers did them a
massive favour, beating Spurs 1-0 to pretty much hand them the Premier
League. Manuel Lanzini and his teammates have to take all the credit for the
win, given that the Argentine found the back of the net and the squad played
out of their skins. But it appears Matic may be able to take some of the
credit for the win - although he will have to get his wallet out now as a
result. According to the Hammers boss, who spoke to Sport Klub, Matic text
him ahead of the game saying: "If you stop Tottenham, I'll take you out to
dinner." He added: "Matic is a wonderful guy, a great player. I will accept
that offer with pleasure." And it seems that's exactly what he did do.
Speaking after the defeat, Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino admitted his side
blew their chances to win the league this season. "To win a league or a
trophy is a key moment. Today was a key moment," said the Argentine. "It's
not about playing good or bad or running more or less but when you have to
win, you win. "If you want to be a champions you must win. How, I don't


No comments: