Far from perfect but West Ham did win


West Ham did win . . . didn’t they?

I shall attempt to either restore some balance to the force or at least play devil’s advocate on the issue of David Moyes. From the outset, it’s important for me to state that I believe Moyes to be far from perfect, and I’m certainly not advocating that he receives a new contract.

However, I would like to point out that West Ham did actually win against Olympiacos and currently sit atop Europa Group A. It was a bit boring at times, and the team seemed to lack creativity for much of the game. Not that it overly impacted the match because Moyes team limited the Greek team to zero shots on target. In short, we were never under serious threat.

Aguerd-West Ham-Olympiacos-Europa League

West Ham did actually win against Olympiacos

Never under any threat despite the worst refereeing I’ve seen in a long time and some very canny deployment of the dark arts by Olympiacos. It’s important to remember that Diego Martínez’s team are excellent at spoiling tactics. They have beaten Tottenham, Liverpool, Manchester United, and Arsenal in Europe, yet they never looked like beating us last night.

Players must take some blame

So much of the blame has been laid at David Moyes’ door, yet the decision-making from Said Benrahma early in the game was abysmal. With only three minutes gone, Benni decided against passing to the unmarked Jarrod Bowen in the box and instead attempted a long-range shot. West Ham really should have taken the lead very early in the game; the fact that we didn’t had very little to do with David Moyes.

It’s also important to remember that Nayef Aguerd and Konstantinos Mavropanos missed really good chances as James Ward Prowse created at least four top-quality deliveries from set-pieces.

Morphine in the half-time cuppa

The Hammers’ halftime team talk must have consisted of the obligatory mug of Horlicks and a lullaby, such was the lethargy in the team after the break . . . which is something that is definitely on the manager. It’s an occurrence that happens far too regularly to be a coincidence.

West Ham played uninspiring football for most of the second half with Lucas Paqueta misplacing most of his passes whilst diving and complaining. Eventually, David Moyes made a tactical change and swapped the ineffective Kudus with Jarrod Bowen, and West Ham started playing again. Eventually, a bit of magic from Ward Prowse and Paqueta was enough to secure the win against a tricky opponent.

It wasn’t classic fare. But we won, and that’s not to be sniffed at . . . just ask Liverpool and Manchester United, who lost this week.

Moyes will move onto the real test, which is Nottingham Forest in the Premier League on Sunday. However, last night we won, although you’d not know it from some of the reactions. While I’m not thrilled with David Moyes’ style of football, I’ll not let my opinion of the managerial situation preclude me from enjoying a victory that puts us in the Euro driving seat.

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Hammers Chat video blogger @Gonzobignose


  • Buster says:

    I totally agree with you, Gonzo…… Manchester City aside, every team wins ugly now and again – some teams scrap away every week. Last night West Ham weren’t exactly pretty, but as you said…… they won. West Ham deserved more against Everton and Brentford and didn’t get it. I’ll take an ugly win over a disappointing defeat every time.

    • Gonzo says:

      Yes mate, I’m not going to start complaining about a win in Europe. . . Particularly when we’ve only lost 1 in the last 20

  • exsoulie says:

    Man of the match was the goalpost that stopped a late equaliser.

  • Budgie says:

    A fair assessment, I felt DM put out our most attack minded team this season. The players didn’t really make the most of it but Olympiacos are experienced and wily campaigners so good result.

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