Slaven Bilic generally leaves little doubt in anybody’s mind about plans for a weekend match – until today perhaps!
His press conference ahead of the game against Burnley provided more questions than answers and try as I may I find myself no wiser about the likely team for the weekend now than before he opened his mouth. Praps that was the plan!
He spoke for a long time but unusually for such a straightforward type of chap said very little when we came to analyse it afterwards.
The big message appeared to be that apart from Ginge and Quina everybody was fit – well sort of because there were an awful lot of provisos in there.
He explained for example that Chicharito was coming back today, has not been with the squad for a couple of weeks but would be training tomorrow…thus leaving a question mark over his involvement.
Yesterday the manager had revealed he has been working hard with two strikers over the international break and given that Sakho, Arnautovic and Hernandez have been away we assume he’s talking about Carroll and Ayew so more questions marks because surely that won’t be the pairing on Saturday.
Today he went on to say that some of the players only started training on Monday so are still not completely fit. He offered no names.
He went on to suggest that he could be in a position to name his strongest team claiming that is not a headache – it’s always an issue. Not quite sure what that means
Then came more confusion when he added that he wasn’t saying they will all play or start but “this is like the first time we have had the possibility to put them team out we wanted in pre-season, on paper our strongest team.”
The one certainty appearing to come out of it all was that Andy Carroll remains very much in his mind with him declaring that scoring goals wasn’t the be all and all to his game.
He said: “Andy is not like that, he opens spaces, he is sometimes two or three around him that have to stop him which opens gaps and spaces. His flicks or playoffs with his head too, are key. For him to make an impact and to be very important, he doesn’t always have to score goals.”
His words told me little so we have to look at his track record this season in trying to arrive at a likely line up. I hope I’m wrong but this would be my guess: Hart, Zabaleta, Reid, Fonte, Cresswell; Noble, Kouyate, Lanzini. Arnautovic, Antonio and Carroll.
CandH’s would be: Hart; Zabaleta, Reid, Rice, Masuaku; Kouyate, Obiang, Arnautovic, Antonio, Lanzini, Sakho
Bilic need to stop relying on AC when he is fit especially when have 2 other strikers who would be better suited against Burnley and on there reason form both have 3 goals. Just my opinion but Sahko & Arthur did win the Swansea game for him
Bilic dosnt even know his best team or best tactics he,s like a rabbit caught in headlights ..fully fit squad and he’s ****ting his pants cuz there’s no way to turn if we carry on playing the way we have …I know we have picked up points but the footballs been shocking..would rather vwatch England ..ha ha ha ha h a
I would prefer idiots like you who want to criticize everything all the time went and watched the spuds!!
I’m an idiot for having an opinion… I might not agree with you but I don’t insult you ..never seen u post before so obviously that says enough
If Bilic genuinely believes Carroll is part of our strongest 11 when everyone is fit, he really is clueless. He’s got to go. Can someone at the club please take some of the outrageous money wasted on the geordie lump and pay for Zabaleta to do his badges? The guy has top manager written all over him.
Greetings from Australia..
I agree with your thoughts to the point, with one tiny exception.
Maybe Slav is not totally clueless, but speaking as a semi- retired medico, I wonder if he is has developed some type of a defined delusional disorder, short of being schizophrenic or ‘bipolar affective’ proper. If he was shown to be mentally ill, I could then easily forgive the poor *******, but if he is just clueless in clear consciousness, as you mooted, then, I agree with you-he has to go. I also have got the same vibe about Zabaleta, he is a class act and feel he would make a great manager one day; we are so lucky to have him around and see the positive way he interacts with his team-mates and the younger players!
All I can say mate, is never lose your hope; we have a potentially tremendous team, if you consider the amazing talent in the U-23 side. The other thing that I can reveal, is that something truly amazing (in a positive sense) is going to happen to our club, hopefully within the next 5 years-think USA and then you are on the right track-all I can reveal at this stage, but I promise, it will happen, sooner or later, and you can look forward to West Ham being one of the best teams in England and Europe-about time too!!
To be fair to Bilic has had a lot of stress and doesn’t look like the happy chap he was in his first season! But I think sometimes he could help himself a bit more, too. It took him a while last year to accept that Antonio wasn’t a rb and I get the feeling that he wants to prove himself right at times even if it means digging his heels in at the expense of the team. Maybe I can understand him being reluctant to play Sakho with their history, but what’s Hernandez done? I know he’s been away but he hasn’t been able to fit him into the team properly at all yet. Hernandez has delivered everywhere he’s been and he’s played at the biggest clubs in the world. Carroll has cost us more than a million per goal in his time here. Carroll’s had so many chances and didn’t take them. It’s time to move on in my opinion now that we have better options!
I hope you’re right about things looking up. But there’s a reason we sing “Fortune’s always hiding…” 😉
All the best mate,
On the basis of your article, I really do wonder whether Bilic is in ‘therapeutic range’.
This on-going belief in Andy Carroll’s potential, was initially irritating, but now I wonder whether it has become part of a delusional belief syndrome.
If he wishes to persist with his present reasoning, and starts each game with Andy Carroll, a number of problems will continue as well as new ones arising.
If AC starts as the central striker, our goal scoring problem will continue..
If we can’t score the all-important early goals, then rest assured, our opponents will..
Furthermore, if it hasn’t started already, Slav will lose the dressing room; we have a number of experienced players who are smart enough to see the folly of Bilic’s way’s..
Most importantly, if Slav fails to utilize Chicharito and Sakho as our central strikers (in addition to other problems with formation, tactics, and strategy), we will quickly find ourselves fighting off relegation..This sort of scenario has a very negative effect on the self-confidence of individual players, as well as the confidence of the team.
Sorry folks, but our group of players, playing as a cohesive, well-integrated team, should be performing much better than we have to date. For a long while, I have admired Slav for his well considered and witty remarks made in public, but when you follow a team like West Ham you are always hoping for something better.
From what I have seen, the U-23 side is playing with so much more style and panache; a pleasure to watch!
The comments made by ‘djstevens’, earlier today (“If Bilic genuinely believes Carroll is part of our strongest 11 when everyone is fit, he really is clueless. He’s got to go”), are sadly, close to the truth; how long should our dedicated WHU fans be asked to put up with these miserable performances? In 53 years of supporting West Ham, I have always felt it only fair to give the gaffer a fair go and reasonable time to settle in-it has traditionally been, the West Ham way, with a few notable exceptions. As it stands, I feel that we would struggle to compete with any of the top 6 teams in the current Championship.
I am not asking for Bilic’s head at this moment, but can we afford to let him run ‘amok’ till next summer? Could Terry Westley do a better job with the first team??
Not sure about your ‘psychobabble’ about therapeutic range etc, but there is something definately ‘up’ with journos actually taking anything in pre-game prezzers as fact, reality or anything other than smoke…….
IMHO with Lanzini back, and hopefully a bit fit, West Hams play will improve noticably…..
I thought I said I hadn’t taken anything as fact …ah well!
It seems quite a few of the Latin American players are only getting back today after a long flight & most are not playing on Saturday. I think Hernandez played midweek, so ….I saw the poll with a lot of fans going for 7 points. I would vote for less than this ( & I would back CP to break their duck against us if they are still on zero when we play. But while points are important the big thing I am looking for is some sign of progress. If that doesn’t show in the next two games surely there will be a change.
Same fans week in week out on forums with nothing better to do than criticize the manager and players from your bean bags like seasoned professional managers…you would hate a successful team you would have nothing to ***** about.
Seems people week in week out come onto forums and criticize the posters instead of giving their point of view , I don’t know but maybe its down to not having a clue about football and crave attention , maybe if they tried the Samaritans as they may be able to help, or get a job stuffing bean bags and sell some on C+H for a couple of packets of Haribos for the sugar content to maybe kick start the brain in gear , anyone else noticed the type lately 😉
Couldn’t of put it better laz ..what is wrong with people …
Simple kip! They just don’t know how to put their point of view over in a objective way , you do not have to agree with a p.o.v. but likewise you don’t have to accept it , but at least give the p.o.v. a thought before deciding and put you’re own p.o.v !! Its called responsive dialogue , no need for abuse ! 😉
If bilic benches sakho tomorrow I’m going to abuse the bloke to death 😂😂😂
I😂😂😂😂im with u there mate sak has to be given a chance ..if not well rant together tomorrow..😁😁👍
This websites little love affair with Declan Rice is getting boring now. As always, regardless of manager, if the player is better than the rest of the players in his position he’d play!!!!
Ah at last someone who trusts the manager…you sure about that 🙂
Terry Westley has managed two clubs in the football league. In 40 games he won 8. A win ratio of 20%. Why would anyone think he could do a better job in the premier.
Ah at last someone who trusts the manager…you sure about that 🙂