Moyes hands out his victory verdict


By Hughie Southon

We have had a lot to say about David Moyes over the last two or three months in fairness he is winning the games that really matter.

Defeat today would have been a disaster as would the games against Everton and Forest but instead three relegation threatened teams  have been seen off and whilst that isn’t definitive it’s an encouraging scenario in itself.

On Aguerd scores against SouthamptonWednesday night Newcastle United arrive and that is going to be a whole lot tougher with most of us probably settling for a point following their three wins on the trot against Wolves and Forest by a single goal in each case and Manchester United today.

The worry will be the slow starts we have been suffering and the added tension around the stadium – an anxiety shared by the manager but we are unbeaten in our last five Premier League home games and as a result confidence is clearly growing.

Speaking after today’s game he said: It was a bit anxious because we didn’t start the game well and we had talked and we had planned about how we would start the game better so that was a disappointment for me.

We played backwards, we tried to play around the back and we know they were a very good pressing team who would put us under pressure, so I didn’t think we dealt with the opening part of the game well.

But thankfully we got a goal from a wide free-kick with a good ball in and good header, and it gave us something to hang onto. After that, it wasn’t the best game we’ve ever seen at London Stadium, but it’s a vital win for us.

It was a superb set-piece goal, and I actually thought we were a bit unlucky not to score more goals from a couple of corners.

I thought we looked a little bit more dangerous at times than we had done and we had other opportunities, but ultimately the team who was losing was always going to take the fight and commit more and they did.

I’ve watched Southampton play a couple of times live in the last few weeks and they’re making a game of it, so it’s not that they’re letting teams roll over them and beat them, far from it.

Paqueta against Southampton

I thought Lucas Paquetá grew into the game as it went on, and Jarrod was very good in the second half especially. We couldn’t get him enough of the ball in the first half as we didn’t really seem to come out down the right-hand side very often.

Overall, I’m pleased we kept a clean sheet and it’s given us something to build on.

The good thing about it is we’re one of the few clubs in Europe and my plan is to get to a European final, so that means we’re going to be playing a lot of Thursday games.

So that means we’re going to be coming into the stadium and if ever we need the supporters then it’s then because things can be difficult [if other teams have gone above you on the Saturday] when you’ve dropped down.

The players have had to do this three or four times already and we could have three or four more Thursday games before we come back and play on a Sunday, so we’re going to need the crowd behind them to lift them with the workload we’ve got and us playing the last game [of a Premier League weekend].

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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