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Honeymoon ends for birthday boy Slav

angry-bilic-624x447On the eve of his 48th birthday Slaven Bilic learned the honeymooon really is over.

But my overwhelming emotion at the end of this horrible affair was one of the greatest sympathy for the magnificent Michail Antonio.

An all action performance of pride and purpose plus two more headed goals shows him to be one of the most powerful and effective players in the country.

To run out a 4-2 loser via in part some dreadful defending from James Collins and highly uncertain keeping from Adrian was just WRONG – heart bleeds for the bloke.

The decision to play Ginge surprised me big time anyway. This was a game for Angelo Ogbonna who I believe to be the best central defender at the club.

But it wasn’t so much the defending that upset me – poor though it was – as the lack of energy and desire when we went 3-2 and then 4-2 down.

We saw nothing like enough of the ball, barely pressed the game and although Lanzini was a great outlet, Dimi – yes I know there was a world class assist for Antonio’s first – wasn’t truly on the game that wowed the Euro 2016 games in the summer.

I’m not sure this would have happened at Upton Park – every team is loving playing at The London Stadium and it’s a fear I have had since writing about it towards the end of last season.

Slaven admitted hiself that initially these would feel like away games and they do. There’s also still an atmosphere inside the ground which really isn’t good.

That is not an excuse for defeat or even a reason- just an observation.

The issue now lies with Mr Bilic – his first serious test is at hand and it was written all over DG’s face as the camera beamed in and saw a mixture of anger, frustration and despair.

No panic at this stage but the pressure is building.

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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

9 comments on “Honeymoon ends for birthday boy Slav

  1. Ditch ginger now , his legs have gone , plus he is a year older , great servant but it’s time to put him to pasture , byrum had a mare ! Kouyate is not at the races and noble is noble ?
    Zara is what I thought of him , ok first game bla bla bla but he is not a sakho .
    I went from pure joy to doom and gloom , I thought it was a bad call playing ginge and so it proved , now ogbonna is not happy and rightly so , why is tore even on the pitch ! Well mr gold it turned out to be bust playing a team like Watford who we should be beating because we are a Top 7 side ? Please keep comments like that to youreself please , teams don’t need extra geeing up before they come to the new gaff . All goals came down the right hand side , exactly where I would have hit us , Ffs early days yet but ! Ffs 🙁

  2. I posted here a couple of weeks ago that I was starting to get the feeling that Bilic wasn’t quite what we all thought. Something of the Roberto Martinez about him. Media darling but a bit of a fraud. That feeling got a whole lot stringer today and I’ve now read others saying the same.

    So many midfielders and forwards signed but now a really exposed defence. I think it may be a long hard season with Bilic gone by Christmas. I know this sounds like panic. But it just doesn’t smell right.

    • Bilic a Martinez ?? OTT Winchester , the mistake pre season was that we didn’t bring in a top class centre back to partner ogbonna ? Lol we got a r/b but he’s not fit yet but the bigger problem is noble and an off form kouyate which isn’t giving the donkeys at the back enough protection ,
      Bilic gone by xmas , off you’re chump old boy, nappy in the post 😉

  3. Bilic is no Freud but ginger and Reid are,
    Between them they make school boy errors every game,
    Ogbonna is world class but can’t cover them,
    It makes no sense we have Oxford chewing at the bit,we sent Burke out on loan and all I read is how he needs the experience,
    What to end up like our old boys that are not good enough,
    Don’t blame Byram either he needs a partner on the right he can depend on and build a partnership with,
    But like the Antonio experiments I am sure we will see the same for at least 4 more games,
    9 great players 2 donkeys means 2-4 results,
    We missed a trick not chasing Dehenney also,

  4. As far back as last season, a lot of people identified rightback, right centre half and especially CDM as our achilles heel and this was brutally underscored again today. Why Bilic spent the summer chasing elusive pie in the sky strikers and adding to our long list of attacking midfielders instead of desperately and urgently sorting our weak areas out esp after we sold Tomkins, l will never know.

    Yes, the honeymoon is truly over !

  5. There were too many times when we lost the ball we had 3 or 4 upfield not tracking back. Payet particularly, Antonio, Lanzini but at the same time know one got close to Zazza.
    Agree about Oxford especially screening the back 4. If we could have focused and sat on lead to half time we would have probably been ok but this reminded me of the early homes games last season with a different cast.
    Missing cresswell badly but leaving byram too exposed.

    • Missing cresswell ? Not on you’re life mate, he will have a problem getting back in the side,
      Arthur has been top draw and can defend. 🙂

  6. The left is not a problem with Ogbonna reinstated,
    But the right has been a problem for years,
    Byram has great ability but as with Antonio he is left wanting with everyone else heading left when defending and even going forward Byram only had Antonio as a target,
    The biggest mistake was letting Burke go,he had his learning year last year and proved he has moved on,
    Already he is better then either of our other 3 CH on the right,
    Novedt would be a better option if Slav thinks Oxford is not ready,But I think now is the time,yes he will make mistakes but they can’t be worse then Clamity Collins or Dithering Reid
    We have made our bed now in the transfer market,
    So Slav be bold put Oxford in or Novedt and stick with it move The other to left cover,
    Obiang can cover defensive midfield

  7. Last season Ogbonna and Ginge conceded less than one game per goal, the back 4 were exposed because the team are not defending as a team, they are attacking as a team but not getting back, collectively other than Masuaku, Kouyate was overloaded trying to defend 3 or more men, as was Nordveidt when he has played there, imho some fans think they are playing badly but they are being overrun, time for two genuine DM’s and more defensive work from the others. When Feghouli is fit play him on the right and Antonio on the left drop Lanzini and Noble and play two up top against lesser teams. With new players there is a settling in period that is happening, hopefully Slav can get it right and the players switch on, last season also Antonio used to run back and help his right back, whether his time as a right back has made him less inclined to do so I am not sure but it isn’t helping us.

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