LEROY: It’s Carroll v Lukaku


LEROY (1)I believe we are facing the toughest game of the season against Everton tonight and I think it could go all the way to penalties.

My heart is longing for a Hammers win but a part of me will also be down at Ashton Gate where another of my former clubs Bristol City fight for the right to meet either the Irons or Toffees in the fourth Round.

It’s so tight in every area of the pitch – the Hammers are not quite at the top of their game and Everton – with a fine draw against Manchester City are seemingly on the way back.

So in the end it may all hang on the two strikers – Carroll v Lukaku. Whoever is on their game is set to have the final say.

Across the two teams I’d have to say the Hammers are just the better but it’s not by much and although it’s a cliche, league form really does go out of the window in these games.

Sam Allardyce said yesterday that he’s probably more flexible than Roberto Martinez and there may be some truth in that although the Everton boss is now adapting and going a bit more direct.

That’s why Lukaku becomes increasingly important but to be honest he has a way to go if he’s going to become fully effective.

For me ┬áhe doesn’t put himself about enough and use his physical attributes. That will come in time but at the moment he is short in that area.

Carroll, meanwhile, is on the crest of a wave after that fantastic goal at Swansea and should he come out on top it could easily be our night.

I do feel there’s a little bit to work for him and Enner Valencia to do on their partnership because the Ecuador international actually prefer to play in the Carroll role.

He loves to get on the end of stuff as central striker so the pair of them will need to work on that after training because at the moment it’s not happening. It’s one for Teddy Sheringham!

I’m sure the two of them can work it and with Diafra Sakho out injured it’s really important that they get it sorted sooner rather than later.

Tonight will be tense and taut but I know there’s no better place than under the Upton Park lights to force a result.

There’s no atmosphere like it anywhere in football and that could just give us the edge we need.

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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


  • bubs says:

    I agree Leyroy and that is why the first 15 mins are going to be important and any chances are put away,because even BFS won’t try and defend 1-0 with only 15 mins used up. We still need more than Downing providing the chances and with Song back and Noble covering the ground we need Jarvis and Alfitano to change things with Downing, if we are looking for a goal with 20 mins to go we can bring on Nolan and maybe that 100 the will drop in the net at last.

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