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Irons a one man band? No it’s just what Dimi does

payet3If I heard one person say it after the game I heard a dozen saying the same thing with James Collins and Sky ‘pundit’ Phil Thompson among them.

The received wisdom  tonight (Sat) appears to be that we are too dependent on Dimitri Payet who of course scored a goal from our dreams against Middleborough today.

But hold on a minute. Isn’t that why we gave him a massive rise, isn’t that why the board would never be deterred from getting him in the first place and are determined not to sell him and isn’t he doing exactly what he did for France in the summer Euros.

Put it another way: This is what he does at every level of the game!

The manager summed it up better than anyone else when he said that we weren’t playng football which created many chances but that the Payet goal is what you expect from your top world class player.

If I had any complaints is what that after such an extraordinary piece of skill you would have though the Irons would have been giving him the ball on every available occasion – that didn’t happen and had it done we would probably have won!

I think the entirely inept Gokhan Tore saw as much of the ball as Dimi in one of the most forgettable performances ever by a Premier League player.

And that begs one big question: How on earth can Dimi Payet and Gokhan Tore find themselves in the same squad. Quite ridiculous and an example of the imbalance in the Irons squad.

The ‘one man band ‘ argument doesn’t hold up to very close examination anyway given the improvemet we saw today with special mentions for Winston Reid, Alvaro Arbeola, Michail Antonio, Pedro Obiang and a slowly improving Cheik Kouyate.

It wasn’t a great performance but the squad had much more about it and with Carroll and Cresswell on the way back after the international break we had a display which at the very least gave us hope!



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VIDEO: Enjoy that beautiful Payet goal

Dimi Payet scored a goal of which Lionel Messi would have been proud against Middleborough today.

It WILL win the goal of the season award…totally astonishing and one of the greatest I can ever remembering seeing.

If you were unlucky to miss it, don’t fear because we have found it in all its glory.

OK we didn’t get the result we wanted and we are still down at the bottom of the table but this goal, and a generally improved performance, gives us hope that things are on the turn.

Watch this goal and bring a smile to your face.

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How we rated the Irons

ClaretandHugh’s ratings man Niall McDonald delivers his verdict on today’s performances

ReidAdrian: Struggling to think of a shot he had to save. Obviously encouraged the players to re-focus after their goal 5

Byram: Made a brave challenge for a loose ball in the opening minutes and was stretchered off – our run of injuries continues… No rating

Reid: A heroic effort. Injured just before the break, emerged afterwards favouring a bandaged wrist. Let nothing past him 8

Collins: Solid defensively – saw too much of the ball in the first half 6

Ogbonna: I apologise to all the full-backs I’ve taken for granted down the years. Clearly a specialist role which clearly doesn’t suit Ogbonna. 3

Noble: Skipper was subbed again. Seems to be struggling to last the pace but then he has started every single game so far, friendlies included 5

Obiang: A master class in defensive midfield play – outstanding. Now will he get the chance to stay in the side? 8

Kouyate: Looked fitter to me today. Not making that standout contribution in the game yet 5

Tore: “You’re ******* useless”, a voice behind me bellowed not long before he made way at the interval 2

Payet: I was sitting thinking it wasn’t as if he was being marked out the game, he just wasn’t involved and then he beat five of them and saved the day 7

Antonio: Added ‘centre-forward’ to his CV – his relentless energy, running and commitment shone through again 6


Arbeloa: Played virtually the entire game and is starting to show his undoubted quality 7

Zaza: I always used to feel half-time changes were a sign of a manager not knowing what he was doing. Zaza was today’s entrant after the break for the hapless Tore. Didn’t look likely to break his duck today 4

Lanzini: Some more nice touches – not quite got the killer-pass radar working 5

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Bilic gives his view on result against ‘Boro

slaven-bilic-west-ham-manager-press-conference_3364517Slaven Bilic declared himself happy to end the losing run of games but unhappy not to have taken three points from the game against Middlesborough.

Speaking after the game he said: “We were looking for three points but the boys showed character, spirit and quality. That’s what I demanded and that’s what they gave me.

“As I say we are not happy with the result but we are not playing the football we should to create chances although it was good in terms of spirit and character.”

He explained that he had been pleased with Michail Antonio’s performance in a central strking role saying: “I have not been happy with the performances of our strikers and Antonio has the pace and power to play the role which he did well.”

He hailed Dimi Payet’s goal as “unbelievable” saying: “It was of the highest possible quality and you certainly don’t see many like that but in relation to this match it was of incredible importance.

“That was what you need from your top players – moments of the highest quality.

“However, with due respect to Middleborough we wanted three points but having said that, in terms of the Premier League every point is incrediby important.”


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Travel chaos as Stratford station evacuated

crowdFans were facing a difficult journey home from the game after the Central Line was susupended.

ClaretandHugh Facebook forum member Graham Hatt reports that Stratford Station has been evacuated and that the travel situation is in chaos. 


Graham reports that a customer was taken ill on the train at Leyton but there has been no explanation how the two incidents were connected.

Our picture shows fans waiting for directions on how they were to find their way home.


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Adrian hails Payet’s Messi-like goal.

Payet4Adrian hailed the amazing Dimi Payet equaliser as Messi-like.

The incredible Frenchman beat five players within the tightest of spaces before firing his shot past the keeer and defender on the line for which will almost certainly be goal of the season.

And afterwards the Hammers stopper was as excited as the faithful who witnessed the greatest goal Dimi has produced in his West Ham career.

But as we report elsewhere there is little question we are over dependent on him and there has to be more from the rest of the team.

However, the keeper said:  “We showed team spirit, character and helped each other. This is the way to earn more points. It is a draw, one more point but a good one for us. We have to keep fighting for more points.

“Payet is like that in training. He scored like a Lionel Messi goal at Barcelona! It is a massive goal to us.”

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Ginge: “We can’t keep depending on Dimi”

CollinsJames Collins applauded Dim Payt’s extraodinary goal in the 1-1 draw against Middesborough but said: “We can’t keep relying on Dimi to get us out of trouble.

“We have to do more defensively and do better going forward but this was a step in the right diction and I thought we were worth three points.”

Ginge emerged quickly after the game and declared: “The last few weeks have been terrible but we were better.

“It was really disappointing to go behind in the second a half especially from something as straightforward as a corner. We have to do better but it was a step forward.

“Dimi scored a great goal. He’s  a world class player but we really can’t keep depending on him like this and relying on him to get us ut of trouble.

“We had a couple of meetings in the week and we really needed this point. Now we can go away for the international break and come back to build on that.”

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Adrian: One result can change everything

adrian12Upbeat Adrian believes West Ham has a great squad of players but “we have to work harder to fix the mistakes we have been making.”

The keeper admitted: “For everyone this is a difficult period at the moment, but we are still optimistic and feel we have a great squad.

“We want this situation to change and have better results on the pitch. We have to work harder to fix the mistakes we have been making.”

Speaking to the official site he added: “We are mostly the same players who did so well last season and we need to show that kind of form again. Everyone is fully focused on the game on Saturday and we know that we need to win the game.

“We want to show the fans that we have a great team. They always support us every game and this is a tough moment for them, but we all need to stay together and remain as a team.

“It was good for us a team to come together and we need to enjoy being together, because it was not like that in the last game.

“We got a bad result so the mentality has to change a little and we have to stay together, both on and off the pitch and get a good result on Saturday.

“If we play well and show a good performance the fans will be very happy and proud of this team, We want to get a good result in front of our fans.

“We have big names in the team and many players in each position. We have a strong squad with the new signings and if we can get a good result, the mentality will change with everyone.”

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Terrible times but a tribute where it is due

bilic-gloomMy admiration for Slaven Bilic knows no bounds….he was humble in the great times last season and remains 100 per cent honest in the current horrendous situation.

During the last 24 hours he has covered every single area of our problems from the events of the week, the shocking form, how he can help adjust to life at the London Stadium, the form of Zaza and much else.

Wherever you are coming from the man’s character, integrity and straightforward truth-telling is as refreshing and bold as I personally have seen in this game.

Football clubs and their managers generally tell lie upon lie. They act as a secret society or a branch of MI6 when you ask about anything as innocent as transfers, injuries, or what the players eat for lunch. It’s ridiculous and laughable.

Thankfully, at West Ham we have no such problems where Slaven and the board are very approachable and ready to give regular updates on most stuff.

Take today for example – here’s an example of what Slav told the official site: “I am asking myself questions all the time of how we can improve the situation and I talk to my staff all the time. The way we are playing is raising questions in a negative way and I agree with that.”

I can’t think of many managers who would use such words as “I agree with that” but that’s the quality of the bloke and I hope when the lads run out at the London Stadium a little later they will do it for him as well as us.

We all deserve 200 per cent after what we have been going through but I want to put my thanks to Slav on the record for showing class and quality.



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Sam set for ‘Strictly ‘2017’ and a dubious night out

pete 2
Welcome to the wacky world of CandH’s off the wall blogger Pete Ellis taking his regular sideways lookat the Hammers week that was!
West Ham were put to the sword (again) this week, and anyone that likes a bet could have told you who the architect of our doom would be.
Yes the man that David Sullivan publicly stated could not pass a medical at West Ham (that’ll be a first btw) came to the soccer bowl and lead his team to a solid 3-0 win.
Not since the Paralympic Games of 2012 has the stadium seen such a great performance from someone with a disability. Good one Dave…..
While Mr Austin was no doubt enjoying a “knees up” on the coach back to St Mary’s, things were not quite as rosy for our former manager Mr Sam HasAPrice.
As someone that has always admired this humble, exciting, forward thinking people person of a manager, I could not help feel a tinge of sadness as the way he was tucked up.
In his defence, when you have a business meal, your guests often use the phrase “to the left a bit please, the lighting is better” or perhaps the old ” can you move a bit closer to the pepper pot I didn’t quite catch that”.
Yep, these rogues did a number on the poor unsuspecting England boss, although in fairness, even Big Sam should have been wary when you give your order to the waiter, only to be greeted by a grinning Dominic Littlewood with pen in hand….
There’s no sadder sight than 150 boxes of pork scratchings being removed from Soho Square….
On the plus side, he’s already a 3/1 favourite for strictly 2017….
Anyway, good luck in your new career Sam, just remember, when people say large fries, they don’t want small fries in a large box. Remember that and you’ll be fine.
Randolph and Carroll.
Nope, it’s not a new crime drama “Dave” it’s the  duo that went on the beers this week after Slav ordered a team bonding session.
People are as furious and as amused in equal measure.
Personally I don’t think it’s ever a wise move, as win lose or draw people will always want to pick holes on young multi millionaires out of jealousy. Equally, it’s not like either of them would be piloting a plane or driving a bus later that day.
Probably not a smart move, but also not one that should get them sent to Guantanamo Bay just yet.
Anyway, here’s to a 6-0 win for West Ham today (Sat) …..Or another week of getting ripped to pieces by fans of other clubs that’s all seemed to be in hibernation during the 2015/16 season.
How times change eh?


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