Allardyce’s style of play excuse doesn’t wash


sam-allardyceSam Allardyce was always gonna do it – blame the demands for a new style of play for the squad’s  disaster in New Zealand!

But before going there, let’s recall the reasons – or should it be excuses – he used for the defeat by Wellington Phoenix because they were legion.

He claimed the players were fatigued, lacked technique, that the Phoenix were well up for the game and it was all a bit physical. And that was just for starters!

None of it made much sense to me but we’ll let that go. The point is at no time did the “development of our new style” come into the conversation or weren’t we doing that three days ago?

P’raps he just forgot eh?

Everybody who knows anything about Sam Allardyce press conferences following a defeat,  knows there’s usually an excuse is available that doesn’t include any fault of his own.

Generally it’s  a ref, official, mistake or player who is at fault yet when we enjoy a brilliant win it’s been masterminded by his altar ego “Allerdici.”

So indirectly the defeat against Sydney FC appears to be the fault of the owners wanting him to play in a different, more entertaining way. Now let’s be honest – is that much to ask???

Perhaps the two Davids made the mistake of believing they had a manager who could adapt his game and that he wasn’t the one dimensional, get it forward quickly operator, most believe him to be.

On several occasions the bloke himself has denied this to be the case claiming that it’s merely a reputation he has been given and it isn’t anywhere near the truth.

If that’s the case why did he play one-up in both games in New Zealand and attack down the wings. Had Andy Carroll been available would he not have been aiming crosses at his head. Of course he would.

To claim that we are still developing “our new style” simply demonstrates that much of the stuff he’s claimed in the past about being “Allerdici” is a long way from reality.

Against Sydney FC there was no passion, no skill, no determination, no creativity and a resounding lack of technique. AGAIN!

None of that is down to a demand for bright entertaining football much as Allardyce would perhaps like it to be.

That demand should not be used as a stick with which to beat the owners. He’s a manager earning a huge amount of money to apply his abilities to requirements.

If he can’t manage that then best to be honest about it and say so, thus allowing people to make a decision on who or what next!

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Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!"

Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon


  • westside says:

    100 % Agree with article Hugh. What a great piece and what most true West Ham supporters are thinking.

  • sparrow says:

    Absolutely true Hugh. Sam basically played the same team, in the same formation, using the same tactics as he did last season – and nineteen seasons before that. He made no effort to adopt a new style but it it is oh so convenient to have that as an excuse for a totally inept performance. As you mentioned he just didn’t think of that after the Phoenix game.
    Sam’s approach to the game has not evolved at all over his management career, he has only ever asked his teams to play one way. He will not change his approach because he is not capable of doing so and every other manager knows this which is why they are finding us increasingly easy to play against.
    On top of this he has no empathy for our club and he is devoid of any vision to move things forward. Sadly there is only one course of action and I suspect the Davids know this. The question is, when will they make the inevitable decision and do what the club desperately needs?

  • hammerputt says:

    You are both absolutely correct; right from the kick off yesterday it was a long ball to try and apply pressure that was easily soaked up. Poor passing and lack of energy from our midfield players resulted in the first two goals. I know that it was humid but there is really no excuse for professional athletes to be so out of condition. I am a masters athlete and at the end of each training year have a four week transition before embarking on base training for the new year – it does not take long to get back to good aerobic condition!

  • Owl says:


    After I saw the Phoenix game, there was a touch of Déjà vu about the performance, but what struck me most was the starting line up which to me told me everything I needed to know. For me it’s not so much that the strikers can’t hit the back of the net, it’s more about the lack of invention and creativity from the midfield heart of the side.

    I’m certainly NOT the type of guy to pull the trigger, but with ALL the noises that have been emanating from the chairmen recently, dead man walking is a term that can be used for Big Sam. IF the chairmen are thinking of pulling the trigger, they better start identifying their man and making sure he WILL accept and be available when they do. The SOONER they do it the better for the CLUB…..and it’s supporters!

    I’ve NEVER advocated this type of action (apart from Grant) but I’m getting a strong feeling that something isn’t right within the club and Big Sam may be getting close to the tipping point where he is losing parts of the dressing room.

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