Hugh's Blogs

Secret of Hammers success is so simple


bilic_234636You may remember former times when West Ham played a diamond formation and it was heralded in our terms as representing something of a revolution.

So it was and for a while it produced some of the best football we had seen at the club efore it was sussed out and there was nowhere else to go as we slipped and slipped.

This time around we of course have better players but there’s an awful lot more to what’s going on than that as was witnessed in our last Selhurst Park outing.

And centrally it’s all down to the new manager and his flexibility and ability to change game plans to suit the conditions of the game. Add to his many obvious virtues – thoughtfulness!

And his biggest thought on Saturday was that he wasn’t very interested in Palace’s attacking abilities. It was all about what we were going to do and boy did we do it.

Ok, they were down to ten men but with two banks of four in front of the Irons we faced a seriously difficult job in breaking them down.

Slav’s answer: Throw on more and more attacking players: On came Andy Carroll, on came Mauro Zarate, on came Nikicia Jelavic.

West Ham fans aren’t used to this…and it’s thrilling. Slav works on the principle that goals win games not clean sheetsย and as the anxiety grew towards the end it was Carroll and Jelavic who created the Lanzine goal. Brilliant.

We explained in an earlier piece that we had around ยฃ50m worth of talent sitting on the bench – how can this be within nine games of the new season opening. How does such a revolution happen?

Simple answer: This manager knows how to employ any system to suit game conditions and has made sure that he has every base covered in assembling his squad.

The many videos of fans parties at Crystal Palace bear witness to the near delirium at what’s going on and it’s about Bilic admirably assisted by a great squad and brilliant supporters.

He is going to become the best manager of this club since John Lyall.

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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


  • Matt says:

    And to think we could have missed him if the Dave’s had got the man they wanted.

    • oldgit says:

      …also…to think we could have missed him with just 17.5% of fans picking him as their ideal manager in polls before he was appointed.

    • WestGoaHam says:

      Was there a reference to a Fat Bloke somewhere in there?

  • Tiddy says:

    Not bad for a 5th choice etc etc etc Mr Keyes you and the other BFS lovers are being a little quieter

  • sleepswithdafishes says:

    He certainly has the attributes of a John Lyall. Added to the best squad we’ve ever had. we should go places during the next 5 years.

  • bubs says:

    Funny but thousands of fans knew what the team needed but a large man with a larger ego being paid a fortune could not work it out,
    What’s worse is he still can’t work it out and now he has turned on his boy,because he knows he can’t save Sunderland and does not want to take Nolan down with him or he knows Nolegs days have gone ?
    This squad has only just started to perform and it will grow and grow,
    Now we should let Hippo,Nolegs,Afitano,Cole etc rest in peace and move on
    Not our problem any more

  • whambam says:

    C.Cole is still a ledge though Bubs, but I do agree with you

  • bubs says:

    Not saying they all did not give our club something in there time,but I have had enough of reading about what they think now or what they are doing,
    Prefer to read day to day stuff about our own lads like pieces on maybe what Poyet or Burke are doing on Loan,
    How are new boys like Antonio are coping not playing much,
    What Slavs new gang are up to,
    What Mr Henry has up his sleeve for next season,
    I can read about ow bad Hippo is doing or what clubs don’t want our has beens in the paper

    • whambam says:

      Yup agree, it’s good to read positive stuff that’s actually happening, it also helps drown out all the crap that all the media/pundits etc that like to take a swipe at us because they are eaten up with jealousy, strangely enough, the better we get the more jealous they become, I have to say that makes me very happy, we’ve all waited a long time for it

  • essexclarets says:

    CC served the club well even though he was never top draw he always gave 100%. Unfortunately that isn’t good enough for us anymore. Imho it was very embarressing when we let him go a couple of years back & then resigned him as we couldn’t get anyone else. So thanx & good luck. Time to move on ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Billy the Hammer says:

    ‘Secret Of Hammerrs Success Is So Simple’- No Hippohead!!
    Sorry Sammerettes,just stating a fact.Becareful what you wish for!!!

  • HamburgHammer says:

    No, this is all wrong! We had it drilled into us the last for seasons that you can only win football games if you keep a clean sheet. If you nick a goal from your only shot on goal all game and then defend that lead.
    You also need to respect the point. And you have to mark out games in your calendar you cannot win, so you don’t waste any energy or thought on those games.
    No need to score two or three goals a game, the clean sheet will make sure you only need one goal to win.
    We also know that foreign players, especially those from South America, need to adjust to English football and need to be sent out on loan to QPR or Rotherham first.
    Also some of those foreigners have too much flair and creative skills and we don’t really need those, do we ?
    Football that is pleasing on the eye, passing football on the floor AND results on the pitch, when did those ever go together ?
    And what are West Ham doing in fourth position in the table AND with a world class player like Payet ? How dare they ? They can be happy with the Collinses, the O’Briens and the Nobles of this world and this should forever be our lot.
    We are clearly upsetting the pundits here lads!
    Long may it continue…:-))

  • Billy the Hammer says:

    What was it Hippohead said in May-

    ” If you want somebody else to do more than I have done then I think you will have to be calling for Houdini.โ€

  • Radai Lama says:

    Haha,i wasnt happy at the game on Saturday.What was Slav thinking having Zarate,Lanzini & Payet on the pitch.Far too many flair players on at one time,lol,wow what a turn around from the sh*te i was watching last season from December onwards on my travels following the Hippohead Harlem Globetrotters ๐Ÿ˜‰

  • Tony gore says:

    Spot on billy?? Won’t be long before sunderland supportes log on to cranky hippos silly ways

  • Tony gore says:

    Spot on billy?? Won’t be long before sunderland supporters realise hippos had it.

  • HamburgHammer says:

    Houdini ? More like Houdinic! This master of positive football and breaker of shackles on the pitch is our Croatian version of a magician.

  • TysonM says:

    Haha,Go for it H,i know you like to let Hippo have both barrels,lol.Dont worry you wont get shouted at like on Wetpants for slagging him,haha.No one here feels embarressed about sticking up for Hippohead because no one did.The Rabid Dogs who know nothing about football saw the light long before the ‘experts’ ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Radai Lama says:

    Lol,i love it now reading all the fans who were crying out for BFS stability being needed this season now purring about Bilic & the way the team is playing,lol,.Very amusing to remember seeing these same people on sites shouting down Allardyce detractors like we were bang out of order wanting him out of the club.Now these same people giving BFS crap themselves,haha,two faced b*stards.No need to name & shame but i remember most of them clearly,haha ๐Ÿ˜€

  • WestGoaHam says:

    Name & shame Rad

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