And he has been smouldering quietly away since it was announced Sam Allardyce would be staying on as West Ham United’s manager.
He has been sitting waiting for a chance to tell it as it is from his point of view.
As is always the case ClaretandHugh doesn’t necessarily agree with him, or any of its bloggers, but we are certainly always ready to defend their right to say it as they see it.
By Nigel Kahn
So, like a cat with nine lives, he lives on.
“The Big Sam stays” announcement was not unexpected but the statement which followed threw up more questions over the long term viability of him remaining in his job.
“The Board and Allardyce have held lengthy and detailed discussions on the Club’s direction, values and philosophy and a positive way forward for next season has been agreed.”
Values and philosophy? Does that mean that after three years someone has finally sat the man down and explained ‘The West Ham Way’ is and what it entails.
Is he happy with that explanation and do they know he understood it. After all, according to Sam in the past, it was an unexplained losing way of playing football. Also, does he now understand his footballing philosophy is alien to this club and that is why he has to change.
“After listening to feedback from supporters, the Board have insisted on improvements to the set-up of the playing and backroom staff to ensure the team provides more entertainment next season.”
The feedback part is interesting as it says they listened, not acted. The feedback they had from the majority was to to sack him but they decided against. The next part of the statement reads like a school report to his parents. “He has not done well – must do better.” The egotistical one gets a slap and his way of doing things. They don’t like, it must change and we will tell you how it changes.
The manager has agreed to recruit a new attacking coach to complement the existing coaching set-up as well as an overhaul of the Club’s scouting and recruitment operation that will see the Board have a greater involvement in the players who are signed as the Board will once again be investing considerable funds into the Club this summer. The club have made clear that they want to see progression on the pitch and at least a top-ten finish as a result.
This seem to say: It’s our money, our club, you do it our way now. DS is now effectively the Director of Football and Sam the coach who has to take the players he is given and get them to play the DoF’s way. Presumably the logic is that if that doesn’t happen the coach gets the bullet not the DoF. By inserting a top ten target the door open to a sacking at the end of the season. Say we attain 50 points next season yet finish 11th, quite possible, that is a 10 point rise than this one, also 4 points better than when we finished 10th last season, yet you didn’t make top 10 so off you go.
Another bit that makes me laugh is: “We have a very clear vision of how we want West Ham United to operate under our joint ownership. Although not everybody understands the west ham way, we do and we respect it as we have been supporters all our lives. We believe this is about a philosophy that is not just about the style of play, but the whole ethos that surrounds the Club.”
If the board understand it and respect it why appoint a man whose “philosophy” is totally the opposite. You appear to sell your soul and ethos in 2011, then complain claim three later when you are short changed.
“Sam was asked to give us a detailed presentation on his vision for next season and during this he assured us that he can deliver that ethos to West Ham United and we have agreed to support him with the resources that he needs. We have mapped out a way forward with him that will ensure our much-deserving fans have more to cheer about next season.
Now that would have been one power point presentation I’d have loved to have seen. We have returned to ‘ethos’ without actually hearing what it is. They are giving him the resources, yet he can’t choose what they are, he has to bring in a new coach which may say you are not up to it doing it your way and he has already been told they are spending the money not him. The last line tells us they know the football was rubbish and it must change, yet everything in Sam’s past says he won’t change, and where is the evidence to say that he, can.
Not only that but with the current squad, even with additions, will they suddenly tear up everything they have done with him and play differently? We don’t know but the fact t Sam has built his entire career of playing one way, and we have now said that’s not good enough andmust change, in my opinion points to a parting of the ways at some time before the end of the season.
After going through that statement I have one big doubt.
If Sam is apparently so confident of his ability that he derides the fans and reportedly claims he is more ambitious than the club, then how the hell does he accept these new terms.
The statement slaps him down a peg or to and puts him in his place, he is not the boss anymore, he’s the minion carrying out the wishes of the owners.
It can only end in tears