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The Mark Noble issue

Mark-Noble-640914What I’m about to write here will of course create a huge over-reaction among many but I need to get it off my chest regardless and take absolutely no pleasure in doing so.

Watching players coming to the end of their career is never easy. I was there for Mooro, Devo, Sir Trev and Billy Bonds.’ It really was as sad as anything I can remember and you close your eyes simply wanting it to go away.

It never does!

Now it’s Mark Noble’s turn to be at the centre of that emotional and sympathetic reaction because however much we don’t want to believe or accept it, the end – as we used to say – is nigh.

He can’t get forward and he can’t get back at the pace required in modern Premier League football – that’s age! To compound the problem he is too regularly resorting to fouls – usually in dangrous positions.

None of this is his fault. Time marches on relentlessly and finds every one of us out but sometime soon Slaven Bilic has to face the worst job in the world and explain the issue to Mark

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Cheik Kouyate is on his way back and the move for William Carvahlo is particularly significant because should we succeed in getting him, he will walk straight into the team along with Cheik.

It seems to me the preparations are being made to break to saddest news in the world to the skipper and word is that Kouyate could be fit for the weekend.

He probably won’t start but I’d bet that once again Nobes is withdrawn at some stage to make way for him.

As I said at the start this is all incredibly sad and I have taken no pleasure in writing a single word of it but reality bites and I believe Slaven has the most unenviable job in the world facing him sometime very soon.

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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

73 comments on “The Mark Noble issue

  1. He’s 30. Players careers don’t end at 30 I’m afraid. Toure, milner, Barry and countless more carried on at the top level well past 30. He’s not playing well and hasn’t been for a while and that’s the reason he may be dropped. He was the best of the midfielders against United but poorer against Southampton. If he gets driven out, hell enjoy a few more years success somewhere else and like Tomkins all the fans will wish he never left.

  2. If we have better players available then captain from the bench for me for this season. Less playing might actually help him.
    We didn’t sign an alternative yet and we do not have great depth so that might not be possible though.

  3. It ain’t a hard decision he’s done his bit now time to move on 😀😀

  4. Some players are past Thier best at 30 whilst others pass Thier best at 35 . It’s a physical thing . Mark , sadly , only made it to 30 or maybe only 29 . The pace and intricacies of the modern game has overtaken him . Bilic certainly has a big decision to make , which can’t be delayed for much longer .

  5. It seems like yesterday that there was all the Noble for England clamour.

    He is a good footballer who is dropping down the pecking order as better footballers come into the squad.

    The “Mr West Ham” tag has two sides to it: local boy who doesn’t want to play anywhere else (the so called “loyalty” argument) vs competent defensive midfielder nobody else has ever wanted to buy.

    If we want to compete at a higher level, we need to improve the squad continually, not stick with the past.

    If Carvalho signs, Noble will get fewer starts and less playing time. There is no shame in captaining from the bench and still contributing, albeit in a lesser capacity.

    • you do know what pecking order is don’t you? he’s a the top of the pecking order which is why he’s always picked…

  6. Time waits for no one , nobles done his bit , its downhill and has been the last 3 years for me!
    He never recovered from his injury ! Slowly getting slower 😉!!!
    I saw it too Hugh , its a sad thing to witness but that’s life and we must all accept it ,to say he’s holding us back is unfair as there’s several doing that ? But its a fact !!😑
    Bilic can tell him or not ! But not means bilic may be out if he doesn’t , if you get my drift😉

    • Sadly I think Bilic won’t make the hard call to his own and Noble’s detriment. The only saving factor will be when Noble is suspended for one of his late studs exposed tackles.Maybe that will force Bilic or whoever is manager to make changes.

  7. I agree, Mark, it’s time I’m afraid. I’m surprised the disciplinary committee didn’t issue him with a 3 game ban for his tackle on Saturday. He has served us well and sometimes it’s better to go out at your peak but I’m afraid that has past and people will soon start to forget all the good performances he gave us if he keeps on messing up.

  8. Him and Carroll – 20-30 minutes form the bench from now onward. Leaders, British, but not capable of a full 90 unless in emergency situations.

  9. That’s Football – it’s a cruel game!

  10. With all due respect to our foreign players, it would be fantastic if our entire squad were local lads who only wanted to be Hammers. I’m sure we all want Josh Cullen to succeed in the first team (if you count Essex as local) but not at the cost of the team overall.

    For any of us who have ever played competitive football, it really shouldn’t be necessary to be told you’re not performing, you should know and I’m certain that Nobes will be aware that his place in the team is under threat but that should apply to every player. The key to this whole issue is trusting Slav to do what he’s paid for and that is to field the strongest possible team for every game. There’s no room for sentiment and the last thing we want to see is Nobes falling victim to the ‘boo boys’. However, if he’s justifying his place, play him.

    • All football is competetive… unless theres games played somewhere where teams don’t play to win.

  11. Same problem we had a few years ago when Sam kept picking Nolan to the detriment of the team and it probably cost him his job.
    Remember without Nolan & Carroll we were third I think , at Christmas but as soon as Nolan & Carroll were fit they went straight into the team and we lost a hellavalot and only just escaped relegation, loyalty to a player or players can do that .
    I hope Slav doesn’t fall into that trap cos he will be gone by Christmas if he does.

    • with respect to your post, big sam was not sacked and they noland and carrol did not cost him his Job, it was a mutual understandinf for both parties for sam to go

      • Sacked ?contract not renewed. Moved on , mutual agreement lol.
        End of season and told to fek off = sacked anyway you look at it mark ! Not good enough ! He was a gum chewing slug who disliked us fans but took the money !!
        Greedy slob with herpes 😈👂👂👂👂

  12. It’s not just about age.

    Noble started playing regular premier league football at a very young age.

    It’s no surprise he looks behind the pace, all these years playing week in, week out must have taken it’s toll.

    Same happened to Rooney, looked burned out at 29. However he became more intelligent with his play and I don’t think Noble has become intelligent enough with his positioning and passing to be as useful as he was.

  13. The problem for Noble is that his game as always relied on his manoeverability ( which has never been in doubt ), and so as he gets older his years will tell in his game. However as schuauthing says he was the better of our CM players, against Man U. and also put in a decent shift against Southampton, so it’s quite possible he will play against Newcastle.
    If on the other hand Check is fit enough for the bench on Saturday, then Mark will be looking over his shoulder. Obiang is certainly in no form to be a threat ( by his own admission ). Rice is a replacement for Obiang, not Noble.
    For me I’m not into player assasination, I’ll leave it to a natural progression of better players taking the place of existing players. Wether that’s Carvalho or Check, remains to be seen. And I think mark Noble will have some say in that too.

    • By the way just a snippet to show he is not dead and buried yet: An excerpt from the analasys from the official website, about Rices performance against Man U.
      .
      ‘ As Rice’s heatmap shows, he got around the pitch too, covering 3.89km at an average speed of 7.08km/h – second only to Noble’s average of 7.45km/h. ‘

      • But noble didn’t get close to anybody did he !! Come on fishes meaningless stats , what was pogbas ?when he was toying with him ??

        • Lol usual answer to facts.
          No stats are meaningless Laz. they just tell you how it was.

          • No fishes he cannot compete , stats mean nothing , let’s talk about contribution to the game , pace of the game to achieve that , closing people down , moving forward not backwards. Lol he’s finished ! Don’t take offence with a different take , listen to everyone around you posting ? They are all wrong then ! Joggers on the street go faster than that anyway ! Sorry don’t agree with you’re Nobel stance ,

      • I saw that also, one part of that is that Rice would have covered more ground across 90 minutes than Noble but as for the other midfielders they should also be covering more ground especially in a game where we were under the cosh. The thing I like about Noble is he always gives a 100% but he doesn’t read the game, when he was younger he could say he was physically fitter than most players in the premier league and that allowed him to be more effective but now players know he is a reactor rather than a reader so they can just pass the ball he will keep chasing because he is a 100% effort player but he is nullified and then he will make bad tackles giving away fouls in dangerous parts of the pitch, I would like him to stay at the club because he is a brilliant example for young players on how much effort to put in but for a couple of seasons now playing in our team he has not been good enough. If he played in a Tony Pullis team he would probably do really well or even if our team pressed in numbers his athleticism would be useful which is what I would like to see but Slav doesn’t have the team playing that way very often and as such he is redundant for me as a first team player. It is sad to see when great figures of the club pass their prime, for me Bonzo was the one I was saddest about but we have to face these issues and look ahead, potentially in Rice we have a new Noble type player who may well go on to be a lot greater even if he is not a local lad.

        • same point I was making about his game relying on his manoverability. It can’t go on for ever, so it limits his life-span.
          I agree about Bonds. I could have cried. If Moore was the end of an era, then Bonds seemed more like the end of the world. We still didn’t replace his presence and influence.

        • Rice also had a 97% pace rate. And in that game at Man U that’s what was lacking passing the ball correctly.
          Noble will still be like others said off the bench game here and there and off the pitch leader but with are sqaue fit even without Carvalho don’t think he should start. Obiang and Kouyate showed great partnership last season.
          And Obiang was good when subbed on at end of Southampton game saved a Hart mistake Punch and dribbled out 3 players to get ball out of our box.

  14. ?? Love the loyalty fishes , totally disagree with them noble comments !! Best ? Obiang ?
    I see a different game to you , he’s done his bit just accept it! ☺

    • my loyalty is to West Ham and all who sail in her.

      You certainly do see a different game. what is it? lol

      • Better than yours obviously mate! Same as everybody else’s ! Move on mate youre digging you’re self a hole !!

  15. I remember a game near the end of Nolans career with us,he ran the furthest of anyone in the team but even in the eyes of his most loyal followers had a shocker.Just saying 😁
    Noble cant keep up with the beasts in midfield these days.If you look at some of the midfielders in the Prem they are amazing athletes.Look at some of the African lads come over here,they are muscular but technically great and can run for hours.
    And before anyone gets all ‘stereotyping a race,politically incorrect Rads’ well no i aint its just a fact 😁

    • One thing I have always wondered is if they had drug testing like they do in cycling after every match how many prem players of any origin would be found to be taking illegal performance enhancing substances. In Italy for a while they had a clampdown and found that many of the players were, they banned a few of the foreign players and hushed a few up if they were in the national side. It was something that was very brief and I wouldn’t be surprised if FIFA were involved in keeping the whole state of affairs under wraps, considering the amount of money in football I believe they should be testing every player on every winning side at least after every match, they can’t say the money isn’t there for an extensive programme.

  16. Sam-Nolan
    Bilic-Noble
    Bilic has to make the tough call before it turns ugly.
    I have total admiration for Noble and what he has done for us but the time is coming for his participation to be reduced i believe.
    Its not like it is only a few fans think he should be dropped anymore and you get no top up on your loyalty card for blindly defending him like some do.
    I read a similiar piece on whtid and it made me chuckle how some of them were up in arms at the way others talked about Noble but the same fans have no problem ragging any other player.

  17. Spot on about the Africans Rads, which is why we need Carvalho ( born in Angola ). He’s a good example. If we get him we should step up a notch.
    And Noble? For weeks people have been screaming for Noble to be shot, but unfortunately he is our best option, at the moment. Obiang has taken a step backwards, Fernandes is still learning, Check is injured, so we have Noble who has not been our worst player by a long shot.
    Funny thing is I watched the Southampton match on the internet, and heard our away supporters singing Nobles name very load, so someone appreciates him.

  18. Nobes has always given away free kicks in dodgy areas, and has always been rather heavy in tackles. That’s his nature, but I refuse to believe he is finished as a West Ham player he’s just not playing well. Mark is a confidence player, always has been and confidence is rock bottom and has been for a long time. I remember he was given extra time off (last year or year before) as he was playing literally every game and was burnt out. I agree I don’t think he will finish the full 90 anymore, but with the rub of the green and support in mid/defence we will see Mark still has something to offer. With hopefully Carvalho and Kouyate though, it does look as if he will be starting from the bench.

  19. By the way ( again ).
    I first saw Noble in about 2002, when he must have been about 15. It was over little heath with my 9 year old daughter.
    I remember saying to my daughter, ‘ well he doesn’t dribble the ball like Cole, and he doesn’t sit and hold like Carrick, so what does he do?
    Well he runs around a lot like 2 men, and passes thousands of times during a game. So he’s made a damn good career out of that, and shear hard work.
    No wonder Billy Bonds loves him.

  20. Uttering Noble’s name in the same breath as Moore, Brooking, Bonds is a joke. Noble was never that good in the first place. There were many of us who could see the problems with Noble back in 2010. Then we were relegated and he unsurprisingly looked much better in the championship and then a few years later had a good season when surrounded by real quality in Payet and Lanzini. It seems some West Ham still haven’t removed the claret and blue specs and seen Noble for what he is. A player who will always try hard and loves West Ham but lacks any real quality.

  21. Whether it’s age or poor form, he needs to be dropped. The point about the fouls is spot on. He just puts us under pressure because he’s a yard off the pace every time. Hopefully he comes back into it again after a spell on the sidelines, I don’t agree with those who say he’s finished, but for now he’s simply not at the races.

  22. It’s time for Mark to find another club if he wants to play first team football.

  23. Band Wagon time .
    Noble is a very average , loyal , workhorse . Little ability but a big heart . Zero points for loyalty so actually he contributes nothing . Time to move ononon …………..
    He is holding us back and Bilic must see that . If not he should not still be in the job . Beginning to believe Slav not the man I was hoping he would be . COYI

  24. ⏰🔜⏳🔚⌛ noble in pictures 😂
    Putting the hanky away 😢 he knows he’s done as already pointed out !
    Be a realist noble and tell bilic you need a new challenge elsewhere and come back home if they need you later 😉

  25. Noble is definitely being scapegoated for the lack of energy and commitment from the midfield players around him – at Man U he was better than Fernandes and Obiang. He also showed more passion than anyone except Hernandez. Added to this he has pedestrian and unreliable defenders behind him that need a kick up the arse – Fonte and Ogbonna. If there is no-one making space then you get closed down and get forced in to errors which is what happened at Man U. He was never a Devonshire or a Brooking but deserves the utmost respect in the same way as a stalwart like Patsy Holland or Geoff Pike did. I do not agree he is finished but yes he is off form and like anyone should only be on the team sheet if there by merit. Last year he carried a hernia for much of the season. Lets see how he is doing after half a dozen games. If he can’t get in the team then so be it but if he can get back to his 2015/16 form then no-one can complain. This is typical West Ham – yesterday this website Cheltenham was a decisive game for Bilic, today Noble is finished – lazy journalism.

    • 100% spot on.
      especially about Pike and Holland. Unsung heroes.
      Also right about the Man U game. He will be replaced when the time is right.

    • Where’s the word “decisive.”? If you think the move for Carvahlo and the return of Kouyate doesn’t suggest Mark is in trouble I’d suggest that’s lazy thinking. Nor is it journalism. Its not a report …it’s an opinion feature.

    • Good old Geoff Pike – definitely an unsung hero back then. He did all the dirty mopping up so Sir Trev and Devo could shine.

    • Agree with you Jonny that he deserves respect, he would run through walls for our club, I am not nor ever have been a fan of his ability but I can see how much the club means to him and I respect him for what he has done for us. I agree also that he is maybe not on form but I am not sure with Bilic in charge whether we will see the best of him, on the ball he is slow and ponderous with too many sideways and backward passes, off the ball he rarely gets near his opponents. It is a shame but the league is a very different one even to that of three or four seasons back, for me he should be a sub or if he is not willing to be a sub he should look at other options.

  26. A fit Carroll is a dangerous Carroll , end of . A fit Noble is meaningless . Carroll will score goals . A season with Carroll in the squad is a dream come true IMO . The mystery for me is that Carroll is being classed as useless when everyone knows he ain’t . His injuries and his abilities don’t compare . Give me Carroll any day . At least BS had defensive nouse . Sorry but there it is . Kept us in the Premiership, don’t forget .

  27. Ffs how did you manage to turn this is in to one of your Carroll love-ins Kev.You even managed to preen your hero Hippo Heads feathers all when the debate is about Noble.Top work 😂
    Dont really see how talking about Noble is lazy journalism,it is all over the websites & fan sites.Everyone must making a fuss about nothing then i guess.Especially if Billy Bonds loves him,i mean that ends the debate doesnt it 💤💤😁

  28. Whats wrong with some of you?!? Last season Noble said himself he wasn’t happy with his season and he felt he wasn’t at it.So the man himself can admit he wasnt playing too well but none of you can admit or accept it even if he can give an honest assessment himself!!!
    Billy Bonds loves him,and?!?!?
    So he shouldnt be dropped because Billy Bonds loves him?!?!?

    • And Holland and pike 😂😂
      Must have been fun in the showers passing the soap 😂😂

      • I have read your comments, and tried to see where your coming from, but, your crude and abusive tone to anyone who disagrees with you, really is unnecessary and detrimental to people having a reasonable discussion about an outstanding player who we all agree is coming to the end of his career.
        I have no doubt your response will be as equally abusive now to me. So before you reply, Mark Noble has served WHU with great desire, drive, loyalty and credit. you most certainly do not.

        • Go back over to the dark side , you’re comments mean jack to me , keep em to you’re self , take you’re seriouse boring comments with you ! All you ever do is come on here to criticise others ? Move on moron troll elsewhere!

  29. You know what they say,love is blind Lol

  30. 99% of West Ham fans love Noble but it doesnt mean 99% think he should be in the starting line up as a given.You can love and respect a player but also offer an opinion on him that might not always be favourable.
    It shouldnt be seen as somehow treacherous by others.

  31. I blame Basil for posting this treacherous post , tut,tut, always making trouble at the twin towers 😂 show some love man and humility !!!! Sybil will be told about this mark my words
    😂

  32. Noble hasn’t been a PL player for some time. It’s not about age, altho he has got slower as he’s got older. He is now not just a passenger but a liability. Bilic is as bind to this as he was to playing Antonio at full back.I love Noble’s commitment to the club but you can’t keep him in the team on this basis. He was lucky not to be sent off on Saturday.

    • Stick him in that chair 101 and pull the lever 😂 he needs another quest 😂😂

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