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Carroll Service Needs Shake-Up

Well that and lot’s of other tactical insights but I couldn’t resist the festive headline. Perhaps I’ve been indoctrinated by the premature Christmas music on my trip to the supermarket to grab some milk earlier today.

Anyway.  . . .  I digress. You poor long suffering Hammers fans have had enough misery during the last few days without me doing an impression of the Grinch. The Grinch for those of you who don’t know is a green goblin like creature who stole Christmas from a town of well meaning happy go lucky folk and ruined the festive season (you can probably see where this is going ).

Christmas is traditionally seen as the cut-off doom and gloom junction by which all of football sets its calendar. I’m no stats man and I’m sure there are exceptions but the gist of the theory is that if you’re bottom when Santa arrives you’re doomed. I probably don’t need to point out that West Ham are not bottom of course but the run of fixtures coming up does not bode well and it’s feasible that we’ll be down there on December 25th.

Before we all take major solice in the fact that we’re not quite as crap as Swansea or Palace it is worth noting that Sunderland were 18th in the league at turkey time last season and they still went down. Our current manager David Moyes was at the helm but could do little to stop the slide and he often opted to play seasoned pro’s like John O’Shea, Jermain Defoe and vice captain Lee Cattermole. There was a mild roll of the dice which saw him bring in Adnan Januzaj whom he’d worked with previously but by and large Moyes relied on his senior players and it failed.

We can only hope that the new West Ham manager has learnt from his recent experience because time is not on his side. Moyes had spent much of the build-up to the Watford game praising the virtues of Andy Carroll but he must have seen that plainly and simply the target man looked like a liability. Big Andy and a few others must not be indulged because they are senior players and because of the achievements of yesteryear. We don’t have the luxury of giving players five or six games to see what they can do.

It’s an oversimplification but we have 26 games remaining and probably need to win 11 of them. Clearly one can cut and slice the remaining games and reach the magic 40 point mark by throwing some draws into the mix but the fact remains that we don’t have time to adapt. If players are going to perform in the limp fashion they did on Sunday then they need to be jettisoned irrespective of reputation.

We have a striker scoring goals for fun in the reserves and a playmaker in Domingos Quina who was player of the tournament in the recent Euro championships and is coveted by Europe’s mega clubs. It’s time for a bit of bravery and a gamble from the manager, it’s one thing telling the players that you’ll only accept 100% but they are empty words unless backed up with action.

It’s time for a shake-up and after one game certainly time to ditch the Christmas pudding up front formation.



The views in this blog are not necessarily those of Claret & Hugh so make sure you blame me for calling Andy Carroll a Christmas pudding.

About Gonzo

ST holder, West Ham video blogger, www.hammerschat.com @Gonzobignose

8 comments on “Carroll Service Needs Shake-Up

  1. How dare you abuse the Xmas pud by association with Carroll gonzo! The PC propaganda machine will be after you ! Of course you’re right IMO but dianganna on performance on Friday outshone quinna 100% ! I don’t know what mike was watching but quinna and miss passing and hogging the ball and to a degree showboating is IMO not the answer but dianganna changed the game when he came on , sakho is the answer up top its who you put with him that’s the problem , dianganna or Martinez ,yes worth a crack even ayew who I don’t rate ! But Carroll isn’t producing nothing except assaulting players and being a liability ! Add to that no means of getting the ball from out wide to feed Carroll in the box makes him a non starter you would think ! Hoof ball hasn’t and will not work with this side ! I can’t see anything will work at present and as you say Xmas could be the pits ! Let’s hope Moyes can see the light and make the changes needed and not worry who’s feelings he’s hurting ! Friday will be a defining moment for me in how he moves forward after Sunday ! Big job little time and not a lot to choose from ? = problem ! 😉

  2. Not sure if Quina or Martinez are quite ready but by all means roll the dice with some youthful enthusiasm, Carroll seems hellbent on getting sent off most matches I see, I am not sure if he is so slow now that he feels he has to be more physical but ref’s can see through him, in terms of teh service to him, although not great it was still marginally better than under Slav, Moyes is famous for having overlapping fullbacks and I think thats what we should be doing, it was actually a successful plot with Payet in the team, he used to come inside and hit a reverse pass to Cresswell or just play him on on the overlap, oh those Halcyon days of Payet magic. You may be right on the 11 wins but possibly this year between 35 and 40 points may be enough, there is an awful lot of dross down there and even Everton look pretty poor, Bournemouth are rubbish, Leicester despite fighting are losing more than they win and the teams doing better than expected can they sustain it, if Silva goes will Watford fall apart ? There is a long way to go before the end of the season and if we go on a run as has been our way who knows how well we may or may not do ? I will remain optimistic until we can no longer stay up, I think Moyes will organise us enough to stay up and if we can slowly move up the table after Christmas we should be alright.

  3. We need to try something different that’s for sure . New Manager and losing first game is not a disaster normally but , being 18th in the table it is very much a disaster sorry to say .
    Why not give Martinez a start ?, Anautovic has been given too many anyway . I’m a Carroll fan but I can see that currently it’s not working . Keep your arms in the carriage at all times .
    Hernandez and Lanzini are tricky players but lightweight and haven’t exactly been pulling up trees . The question seems to be who should play with Sakho . Would be good to see Antonio back , seems the only player apart from Zabaleta and Carroll to give it a go .
    Home ( home? ) to Leicester Friday . God help us if we don’t get up Friday morning .

  4. Not sure I’m with Laz on Sakho. Attitude all wrong and it showed when he came on against Watford. Didn’t get the ball because he, like Carroll, was static. That’s not to say he would have created chances had he been more mobile, which is usually his strength, because Lanzini apart we’ve nobody capable of playing that killer pass. And with clubs having worked this out, (stop Lanzini and West Ham are rubbish), we are right up against it.
    With Chic injured, our best bet before January might be sticking Arnie and Antonio up top and Arthur and Ayew out wide? I’ve given up on central midfield because Nobes, Chek and Obiang dont have a sprint or a killer pass between them. And I see we nearly conceded (again) from our own corner! The thought of Leicester hitting us on the break fills me with dread!

  5. The reason sakho IMO jimbo isn’t starting is because the service is not even remotely good enough so hoof ball must be played to get the ball up top but after its hoofed Carroll only wins 1 out of 4 ish , add to that no movement to pick up the knock on which nobody knows in what area he’s trying to knock it in to, so it goes nowhere ? Sakho is the form striker who scores goals with most opportunities given him plus his movement is 100% more than Carroll ! Sakho received nothing at Watford ! Nothing at all ! Our squad is in dire need of creativity and in defence nothing is going to change , it can’t , just not good enough !
    There’s a hole bigger than the Atlantic ocean in midfield ! There’s the possibility of getting no points at all from now until Xmas ? A real possibility ? Best get the MILEEND and the ICF in to scare the opponents away ! I bet waynetta is pleased about that one !

  6. Can’t argue on the service, or lack of it Laz, absolutely dire. We need a bit of a clear out come January with some fresh blood coming the other way. I’ve read that Chek, Sakho and Arthur are seeking pastures new. Well if they’re not up for the fight, move them on. Might be the case that January is our opportunity to cut the wage bill, lower the average age and start to prepare for life in the Championship because like you I can’t see where the next win will come from.

  7. Come on Jimbo don’t give up yet mate. I agree it looks bleak, & yes I think we are going to need some spending in Jan. People often say Jan spending does not work & you can’ get quality players then. But Palace made a couple of astute buys last year. Even we got Demba Ba back in 2011- he managed to score at a good rate even though Grant wanted to play him out wide with CC as the main striker. It might be too much to ask but three decent players who also have some leadership quality could make a big difference. But we need to scrape a few points from the current squad in the next 6 weeks.

  8. Yes Service is needed. We need creativity should of addressed over summer.
    Why not give Toni a chance if up front like Laz said w Sahko.
    Toni needs service but we have been linked w Ings who is playing in U23s & injury prone makes no sense to me when Toni is out scoring him.
    I’d start Sahko & Ayew I think 2 up front we need. Ayew has been on good form Sahko not everyone’s favourite but he is on form & our most rounded CF.
    Your paying him extra to sit on bench might as well play him & if he still wants to **** off in Jan he will go for more money if scoring goals & it will help us not get relegated

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