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Expert opinions? So please explain Dawson doubts


By CandH’s top blogger Allen Cummings 


Last night certainly wasn’t the most riveting game of football we’ve seen from West Ham this season. But what a dogged effort it was from the team, especially in the face the adversity that befell us during the game.

We all knew it would be tough, especially without Michail Antonio up front but of course what we didn’t know was that we’d lose Angelo Ogbonna after just 16 minutes, and his replacement Issa Diop wouldn’t re-appear after the break.

Then Andriy Yarmolenko hobbled off after 54 minutes to be replaced by rookie Ademipo Odubeko, not to mention Jarrod Bowen having another disappointing 45 minutes before being substituted when Moyes went to what became a far more effective back five.

All that and we still only lost to a single goal scored in the seventh minute of extra time by one of Manchester United’s ‘big gun’ substitutes Scott McTominay.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had also having been forced to bring on the likes of Luke Shaw, Bruno Fernandes and Edinson Cavani to get the job done.

I’d have thought most West Ham fans would have been pretty proud of how David Moyes has instilled such a commendable, hard-to-beat and never-say-die attitude into his team.

It might not be pretty at times, but it’s the kind of attitude we’ve been crying out for from our team for more seasons than I care to remember.

But no – the final whistle had hardly died away before those who thrive on negativity – and with it the chance to moan – were actively engaged in their favourite pastime! Nothing changes.

Star of the show for us last night was surely Craig Dawson. Ironically the very same player who those negativity addicts had a field day with when Moyes brought him to the club on loan.

If you need the perfect example of why we shouldn’t give those ‘experts’ any credence at all, Dawson is it! Three important goals and a string of outstanding performances underlines they haven’t got a clue!

Talking of not having a clue – how did Jermaine Jenas totally ignore Dawson in awarding last night’s Man of the Match to Harry Maguire?

Yarmolenko was virtually anonymous for the 54 minutes he was on the pitch. His replacement Mipo sadly posed no threat – so what did Maguire actually do to deserve that accolade from Janus?

Meanwhile Dawson took over the main defensive responsibility from Oggy and was at the centre of a defence that stood firm against everything United threw at us.

With just a bit of luck he could so easily have been our match winner, too – his header in the last minute of normal time just going wide.

Jermain Jenas is an awful stand-in on The One Show. Last night he proved he’s no better in his day job as a football pundit!

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About Hugh5outhon1895

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

13 comments on “Expert opinions? So please explain Dawson doubts

  1. I’m glad you said that! Dawson was my MotM. What exactly did Maguire do??

  2. Excellent Hugh!! We gave Maguire and Lindelof a dream night by playing one up isolated against them. Yarmo is slow and steady, he’s not Antonio. Play him and you must play differently. We then left a youngster on his own against 2 internationals and knocked it forward – not a hope. We were better 3-4-3 later where play could develop. If we don’t play Antonio, don’t play the same way!! Dawson Awesome!!!

  3. Well said sir, totally agree.

  4. Good post Alan, finally some sense about the game. Apart from the first 35 mins where we were on the rack i thought we played pretty well. 2nd half i thought we were the better side and messed up at the critical moments the correct pass etc. Their goal was a break-away as if Rice could have controlled the ball we would have had a great opportunity ourselves.
    Bowen and Fornals need to pass earlier. Benrahma should have been playing a lot earlier though and might have made a difference. I was proud at the end of the match and sometimes that is all you can ask for, all the players were knackered. Under Moyes were getting 100% commitment and Dawson has been a revelation, i was not happy with his signing but he has been immense. If picking MOTM from united their best player was their left back – maguire was up against Yarmolenko and the young striker who to be honest looked a bit scared to get stuck in.

  5. Come on .its man utd isnt it. Of course everything they do is better than others ! Top six club got to be good! Mind you bit worrying McGuire? Really ?

  6. Spot on again Alan. Dawson was head and shoulders above any other defender and was playing against a team that had 70% possession. He is clearly enjoying his time at West Ham and working his socks off in order to stay. The views of pundits and some so-called West Ham fan sites are pathetic and best ignored.

    There is such a site with the initials HN that was first to condemn the signing of Dawson and branded it as a ‘desperate measure’, ; he’s been relegated twice’ etc. They could never have watched him play. Strangely they are now saying what a wonderful signing he has been, but fail to mention the egg on their faces.

  7. Dawson MotM? Missed a sitter that should have been the winner. But credit for having a go. Ian would have given MotM to Mark Noble. Maybe if Fabianski had been given more assistance, he could have been a contender. We faffed around at the back and in the middle. Going sideways and backwards. Was that to suit Yarmolenko’s style? We were much better going forwards and causing Man Utd problems in their half than when messing around and giving the ball away.
    Anyway, Man of the Match counts for very little and has to go to someone. Sometimes the pin needs to be stuck in the team sheet and the ‘winner’ announced. Calm down Allen – and carry on!

  8. I can’t agree more, unfortunately Maguire didn’t have much to do, I don’t think he could Marshall the defence like Dawson did, as for Jenas he wasn’t a very good footballer and an even worse pundit.

  9. Dawson was my man of the match but they always award motm to a player from the winning team dont they?

  10. I don’t listen to the majority of footie pundits out there, who are clearly holding on to football punditry for dear life as they know thay haven’t a chance in the real world. If they really do know so much about the game they should go into management. Otherwise keep their traps shut and disappear into the abyss 🙂 Anyway enough oxygen wasted on those toss*rs. Speaking of the T word, any true fan would see what Dawson has brought to use this season. Bummer about Oggy but hopefully not too bad an injury. Moysie must love the fact that he as players that can form up to any formation in terms of attack. However I’m still annoyed we never went for Watkins as his style would’ve suited. Ok so we’re out of the cup – now we have Europe to focus on and I still see a top 7 finish – if the Spuds finish below us by end of season, I will buy each and every participant on Hughs site a pint! That doesn’t include the t*ssers who are mentioned above…COYI

  11. Defensively we were extremely good. Moyes has got this squad really organized — it’s not the WHU we’re all used to from seasons past! But we were sadly lacking at the offensive end, as we’ve been so often this year. In the first half we couldn’t move the ball forward at all, and in the second our lack of any reliable finisher kept us from capitalizing on the few chances we did get. How many times this year has Fornals squandered an opportunity with a poor finish? Antonio and Benrahma also have had real difficulties making the last touch count. It’s unfortunate that Lingard wasn’t available: he looks like he might be what we need in this regard. Here’s hoping that Oggy won’t be sidelined against the Blades — he’s been the cornerstone of our defense, and is a top contender for Hammer of the Year.

  12. Alan , it’s nothing new in sport for supporters to have completely different viewpoints on watching the same
    Match . One feels this player was good/poor , the other guy thinks the opposite. It’s part of the attraction of sport .
    On your column I feel it serves no purpose other than to elicit responses one way or the other . I suppose you can say the same of any opinion piece .
    I just think it’s tiresome to regurgitate the line about moany supporters .
    It’s an emotional game and supporters will adjudicate on each individual match , it’s what the most of us do .
    Many of the moany fans you chide here were effusive in their reaction to the Villa game . It’s give and take . And moaning is now a backhanded compliment to Moyes . His doing such a good job , expectations are raised .
    On last night – I thought we were set up to play for pens , no doubt influenced by the players avail .
    And on Dawson – many who were underwhelmed by his signing have since acknowledged he has been outstanding , no less again last night .

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