We are the real deal – the best in 30 years

It’s the real deal, the whole package of a quality squad and a top class manager which we haven’t seen in 30 years at our club. But of course the years of heartache and disappointment only make times like this seem sweeter.
Toby Cole ClaretandHugh FB forum member
alex-song-west-ham (1)
Match verdict
I was hunting for the right words to sum up the Irons magnificent performance against City this afternoon when they appeared in the form of an FB message which I have reproduced above.
Apart from the result everything you would want from your team was on display: skill of the highest order, energy, passing, goals, team spirit, a never say die attitude – the list goes on and yet we all feel disappointed.
It’s now a cliche but honestly – that’s how far we have come in this magnificent season under a manager who simply wants to win – he got just the one point today but Slaven Bilic has no real respect for a point as his post match quotes demonstrate.
Yes, Dimi Payet and Manu Lanzini – when available – are always going to be the headline grabbers but what was so great today was that the often overly maligned Mark Noble organised a midfield battle which saw us battle and harass City all over the park and win the scraps that mattered.
It took two mistakes – one from Jenkinson which almost defies words – and another unfortunate miskick from Cresswell – for the City ‘aristocrats’ to get their point. Some will believe they deserved it. I don’t. Any team that fails to defend a long throw in properly deserves nothing!
It’s hard to find more words to describe Dimi Payer so here’s just a dozen. He’s SUPREME, probably the finest player of his kind I’ve ever seen.
Alex Song was awesome – right back to his best, Michail Antonio was fantastic and I was astonished when he was replaced by Victor Moses who had nothing like the same impact.
And we haven’t even mentioned the fabulous Enner Valencia who is finally showing exactly why we splashed out £12 million for him. Two more goals and a great all round performance.
Then there was the arrival of Sam Byram who looks a class act and despite the “he’s one for next year” chat from manager and chairman he looks more than ready for the Premier League to me.
Some may believe it’s wrong to single out individuals after a team performance of the highest quality but each of those guys deserves a special mention as does Winston Reid – who was excellent after his lay off.
This is the team that Slav has put together and he always gives the credit to his squad when things go well and shoulders responsibility when it all goes pear shaped.
None of us could have imagined the levels he would take us to when he arrived and I’m very glad I wasn’t careful about what I wished for!
Irons v Man City 2016 that will live long in the memory but then it really has been that kind of season. Toby says it all much better in that short and to the point statement above.

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

17 comments on “We are the real deal – the best in 30 years

  1. **** me, how good are we?

  2. We will qualify for Europe and I do think we can get a top 4 place but obviously we need others to help out,
    FA cup now so important to us,we must go to Liverpoor and take there poor defence apart,
    If needs be get a draw and bring them back to our ground,
    Now we must take the next 12 points against side we should beat,
    Then everyone will believe,
    But your feelings are mutual Hugh

  3. Agree mostly Hugh but I think its harsh to describe Cresswell’s clearance as a miskick, he had to clear the ball Collins had got dragged over following the ball which left Aguero who stood still in a position where the clearance finished and it was a great finish, Aguero was different class the whole game as were so many of our players. You could run through them apart from Jenks who made that needless challenge and not one of our players would be less than an 8 out of 10. For me the telling substitution was Antonio and that was why there was that void defensively that ended up with the ball easily heading to Eanachi or however you spell his name. Antonio’s performance was right up there, he was huge as were Payet, Song, Collins. Valencia who you can see when you play him through the middle is a better player than when he plays wide left, Byram who had a brilliant debut, I was worried Noble would get himself sent off but he was also huge, Kouyate was full of energy and unlucky not to score with the last touch of the game, Collins, Reid, Cresswell, Adrian, Moses was good going forward, Jelly threw himself about and won some good contests late on. We are a really improved team and were very unlucky today not too win but as Slav said you have to be proud of the progress and the fact that we went for the win with the last attack of the game rather than just kicking the ball into the corner and playing out time says all you need to know about our ambition.

  4. People keep asking what’s the ‘West Ham Way’. Watch that game, it was on display there. Question answered for all to see. Keep playing & progressing as we are & we are real contenders for the title. Perhaps not this year but Europe is on the cards & we fear no one with this manager & squad.

    • Not sure where to put this, so here will do.

      Tonight’s post match comments and how each manager approached their respective games from Slavan Bilic and Sam Allardyce tells you all you need to know about the mentality of the two men.

      Sunderland home to newly promoted and first time ever in the top flight Bournemouth.
      West Ham home to mega rich, title chasing, champions League playing Manchester City.

      Sam claims it was a match they could not lose and that they should “respect the point”
      Even before the game he was talking about drawing the game and “must not lose”. Not once did I hear him talk about winning.

      Bilic hails his players but admits not beating Man City was also disappointing. Even at 2-2 Bilic was trying to urge his players forward to grab the winner. Before the game he was talking about HOW we can beat Man City.

      Slavan tries to win each and every game. Sam tries to not lose any game.

      Thank god we now have a proper manager and the Dudley Dinosaur is a badly forgotten West Ham nightmare.

      Bilic may not have been the first choice. BUT HE WAS THE RIGHT CHOICE.


      • I am sick to death of the Big Sam bashers. He performed a very good job to get us where we are now. And if you ask most supporters, they say the same. You Hippo Hooters, like those who booed Scott Parker on his return, or have a go at Noble or Collins (of course you’ve all gone quiet on the latter now!), are out of touch with what most supporters think. Sure now we have far better players and manager, but all this slagging off makes me sick. **** you all!

        • As a season ticket holder of over 20 years, I can assure you that for every 1 fan that liked/loved Sam there was easily 25 that hated the man.

          Why do you think his name was never sung, or after a game he (not the team) was booed god knows how many times. Or there were banners being held up asking for him to be sacked.

          You may have liked him, the vast vast majority did not.

          • I thinks thats harsh Stinger, I didn’t really have any feelings towards him love or hate, I do recognise that our club was in danger of going straight from championship downwards when he took over and he stabilised us and got us back into the PL which when you look at the mess, low morale etc when he took over he was maybe one of the only managers capable of rebuilding us and he did, he put the foundations in, just think of him as a tradesman you don’t like but is the best at what he does ( the ugly work ). The chairmen were loyal to him and gave him a chance to play attacking football, when it was obvious he could not or would not change his philosophy they made the right decision and chose a man that can, thank god !!!

  5. Here is a quote from Joe Hart from the MUFC official site, very generous in his praise.

    “That save did feel good from Dimitri Payet,” the England stopper said.

    “I had to move my feet quickly. It was a great game of football. I thought it was a brilliant game. They played football. It was great the way Enner Valencia was attacking.

    “Sergio Aguero is a killer – even though he is not at the standard he says is his best, he’s still scoring. We’ve come from behind. A draw was a fair result, a West Ham win would not have been unfair. A City win would have been unfair.”

    Fair play Joe and thanks for the kind words COYI!!

  6. What a brilliant and inspired performance.
    So pleased to see Song back in form.
    Also share your feelings about the /premature subbing of Antonio for Moses. Antonio was having a great day, and I.m not sure whether Moses did very much to add, Seems like Antonio keeps getting better and better with each game!
    Seems unfair to call the Man of Match, so many candidates; I don’t know who received it? Anyone out there know?

    • Bringing Moses on was the right choice. Not necessarily for the tactics of this match but because he is coming back from injury and needs minutes for match fitness if we are truly to have a deep squad of players.

      Same thing, really for bringing Jenkinson on late in recent matches – we need to make sure all of our 1st and 2nd choice players are ready to play.

      With that said…the new right back – I bet he won’t have a squad number next year…

      Bringing Song on here and there after injury is certainly rewarding, eh? A full 90 with a very decent performance.

      Yep, in a few short weeks, we’ll have depth that will be the envy of some. And with the next 3 fixtures…man…it is this sort of season that one understand the “way”…which means patience and enduring those times when fortune hides.

  7. Pat not having a pop at you but bringing on Jenkinson for ten seconds is not productive,
    He is a problem as a defender and bringing on Oxford for ten minutes every game would have been more productive,
    The good thing today for us is we now know Byram should play first choice,Tomkins second
    Oxford Third,any one with two legs before Jenkinson who should never put a Westham shirt on again,
    Song now needs to learn against smaller sides that don’t give you the room to play to chase the ball and hunt down the opposition,
    Well played Noble who did exactly that

    • Too early to say such thing bout Byram. Remember all the praise Oxford got after his first game and what happened in second. Nevertheless the fella is bright.

    • @bubs

      I would agree a bit on blooding some of the youth (re; Oxford). Jenks was brought on to cover for Tomkins either due to fitness playing the RB spot or niggling injuries (feels odd having a CB cover for a FB…still)

      With the rest of your response…spot on!

  8. Great performance from all the lads. Not taking all three points feels a bit unfair but well done one and all. COYI X

  9. In his second he came across Leicester and every player we fielded that day wondered what hit them,
    Any player that has to play against Di Silva,Navas,Aguerro,Delph,Nacho in the premier for the first time and produces this performance is not a one game wonder,
    Jenkinson is bright he can tie up his own boots but after that it’s all down hill,
    This could be the best signing of the season,
    Yes better than Payet or Lanzini,people forget how important this right back position is its like having a whole in a dam,

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