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Hoping for a young hopefuls final day

I believe we will be safe before the final game against Everton and beyond the relief everybody will be feeling should that be the case such a situation present the Hammers with an academy bonus on the final day.

For all David Moyes’ faults – and his negative approach is paramount among that – he has shown a willingness to give youth a bigger chance than either of his predecessors Allardyce or Slaven Bilic.

And with Declan Rice now firmly established in the squad, final day could be the moment when two or three others from Terry Westley’s set up get a chance to impress.

Make no mistake the Under 23s are in great shape and following promotion last season – and despite the loss of skipper Rice to first team duty – finished in fifth place behind Arsenal, Leicester, Liverpool and Swansea.

They managed that despite a long injury absence involving Nathan Holland (above) who is one I hope features down the right should all be well on May 13.

Michael Brown at right back is another and central defender Josh Pask has been seriously impressive every time I have seen him.

These youngsters are quality and at the end of a seriously worrying season we should be very pleased indeed with what’s bubbling under.

It would also be very pleasing indeed to show old Allardyce how wrong he got it in ignoring the youth set up for so long!


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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

3 comments on “Hoping for a young hopefuls final day

  1. Michael Brown or Marcus Browne..
    Doesn’t really matter!
    Terry Westley has done a terrific job with the U-23’s, who for those who haven’t had a chance to see them in action, have played sensational, open, attacking football, reminding me of the very best from the Ajax Amsterdam Academy since the early 1970’s-strangely, most of their Academy team have made it through to the Ajax first team, since they learnt ‘total football’ at the same time that the first team (including the genius of Johann Cryuff), under Rhinus Michel; just like the first team, the Academy boys played the same formation as the first team-either a 3-4-3 or a 4-3-3. Last decade has seen the average age of the Ajax first team between 21-23 years of age!!

    • I agree entirely. As a club, we need a philosophy that is independent of who is running the club, who is managing the team and who plays in it, so that whomever comes into a role, the structure is always consistent throughout. Everyone knows what is expected, and our youth players are nurtured to fit the first team system. That is sustainability, rather than relying on bringing in a team full of individuals, all of whom have learnt in very different ways.

  2. Yes a nice idea. In the long term we have to bring more young players through. The owners don’t look able to spend at the level needed for PL stability so DIY is the only answer. It is a bit depressing that in the modern setup any top youngsters will then be quickly snatched away by the likes of Guardiola, but there is no alternative that I can see. But of course it is not ideal trying to bring young players through when you are always scrabbling for points- as Declan Rice’s season shows.

    Unfortunately I have my doubts about our ability to relax on the last day. I still think Saints wil put in a spurt to end up above us as usual. Although City have nothing to play for & United may have only the Cup to think about I cannot see either of them handing us 3 points. Leicester also ought to be on the beach but beating them away? Not sure we can… Everton should be beatable. But BS may have a gleam in his eye at the thought of getting one over the owners & the fans who booed him. Looks like he is heading for the exit at Everton so perhaps he (& the players) will not give a toss. That is our best hope but if we go into it needing to win I am not sure our boys have the steel to get the result. So I am hoping that one of Saints Swans or Terriers have a really bad run in.

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