Under pressure Moyes deserves some joy


It would be a very hard man who didn’t feel some delight for David Moyes after last night’s win and a few of you may be surprised it is coming from Claret and Hugh.

The manager has never been our favourite person and has had pressure piled on him from here, there and everywhere for weeks. But last night we beamed with and for him at the end of a game which, although never great, was all that was required.

We are in that final and who is to say we and he are not going to win our first trophy in all these years and he, the first ever apart from the charity shield. He got most things right last night against a team that by and large produced a passive performance lacking a real cutting edge.

That can’t be allowed to detract from a West Ham performance which defensively was outstanding and offensively saw the team make more and better chances than the hosts.

So well done David Moyes – we are pleased for you and our beloved club. Here’s what the boss had to say at the end of the 90 minutes.

Here’s what he had to say after the game: “ For us to get to a final is a thrill. It’s huge, a great night. There are huge scenes in the dressing room. There’s great elation.

Let’s be fair, maybe if you saw us in the Europa League last year, you might have said ‘They’ve got a chance of winning or getting to a final’.

The support tonight was magnificent, they were right behind the whole team and players and I hope on Sunday against Leeds United they give them a huge, warm welcome.

We didn’t play well with the ball tonight, but we were well organised and defensively well-structured. It gave us a chance by making sure we didn’t concede tonight. We want to play much better and we had three or four opportunities on the counter-attack to maybe get ahead in the game earlier.

Was I overly pleased with the performance? No, but the job is to get to the final. We’ve had 13 wins and one draw in Europe this season, so it’s been a great run. The players have done a brilliant job and they deserve all the plaudits.

It’s difficult to explain how I feel tonight. The lows are incredibly low in football, the highs are high, but I’ve won a semi-final and now I have to go and win a final. That’s the next bit.

We’ve all but stayed up and we’re also in a final with a chance of winning a trophy so there are a lot of positives that have come from it.

When I got the word about their record, being undefeated in 25 European home games, I was frightened by it because great teams have come here over the years and not won.

I thought, oh my goodness, but I had come here and won a few years ago with Everton and maybe this is one of my lucky grounds, because a lot of people say I’ve got a lot of unlucky ones!

I’ve been in football and a manager for a long time and you don’t get loads and loads of big opportunities.

Maybe if you’re a manager of one of the top clubs you do, and we’ve shown in the last two years that we can compete [as a top club].

To actually get to a final is something which doesn’t happen in many managers’ lifetimes. I’m thrilled that I’ve had one or two, this is my first European one and it’s something I’m really pleased with.

I’m really pleased with the last two years of European football and it’s a chance for us to be in Europe again. We’re one game away from being back and we’ve just got to keep our record up and see if we can do it.

By Hughie Southon

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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


  • Clive says:

    Moyes is absolutely right about not many managers getting opportunities to win things outside of the top clubs. Ok so he’s never won anything apart from the charity shield but if he wins this it will be a great achievement. How many English clubs outside the top six get to win a European trophy? Not many I’d wager.

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