Wes Foderingham – cynicism vs reality

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The response of many Hammers fans yesterday at the unveiling of Wes Foderingham as our next new signing, complete with WHUTV interviews, photo shoots and the usual PR circus was largely in the category of ‘underwhelmed’. A player who is – bar unexpected departures of Fab or Areola- expected to be our third choice goalkeeper hardly ignited the imagination of supporters or media commentators.

But for all the ‘bang-average’ comments it does seem as though there is a slightly different reality. Yes of course, the video releases, TV interviews and press releases on are normally those we enjoy when a ‘real’ landmark signing is captured such as Kudus or even Guilherme and applying the same to introducing West Ham’s number three goalkeeper seemed on first inspection a wee bit – well- lame.

However apart from a sensible bit of team building straight from a leadership manual to integrate new team members and make them feel part of the project, the signing does signal a small, definite move in a better direction.

‘Upgrading the squad little by little, piece by piece’ is not really a massive advertising strapline but would be more sensible analysis of the latest – second- piece of business in this window. Compared with our previous third choice ‘keeper, whether Anang or Trott, Wes F. can only be seen as a big upgrade. Now we have a third choice shot stopper with Premier League expertise whereas before we were one injury away from a potential emergency. When Areola was injured last season and Fab had to take over, the warning signs were there. Anang, although having seemed a season long presence on the bench, would hardly have been a reassuring sight  for our back four if he had required to come on should Fabinaski have taken a knock during Areola’s absence.

Remember the David Martin heroics during the ‘Roberto’ crisis. Instead of relying on similar superman exploits from a totally inexperienced keeper again, the ‘prudent’ option of bringing a very experienced third choice stopper  to the club, when looked at through the prism of ‘step by step’ improvements throughout the team- makes sense and should be welcomed.

However, of course, with no big, sexy marquee signings as yet being lauded or trumpeted, we as fans are lukewarm about the fuss being made on official media. Instead, there is an argument to feel reassured a little that wholesale upgrade and improvement IS happening –  not all of it is exciting but long overdue. More please. Just save the hype for bigger names.

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Like everyone else, lifelong WHU fan and season ticket holder in old BMU stand at Upton Park from 2003. Billy Bonds these days with my adult son and impatiently waiting for my Grandson to be old enough to initiate him before his mum grabs him for Man U. All opinions are my own very biased ones.


  • Trevor Brooking walks on water says:

    At least he fills one of the homegrown quotas.

    • Not excited about a 3rd choice goalkeeper says:


      • rollercoaster hammer says:

        if he is chsen in the 25 named squad then he qualifies as a homegrown player….YOU M*R*N. now…shutup you offensive goon

        • Fed up of Morons allowed on the Internet says:

          God,you’re incredibly dumb! Go and play with some action man dolls,that’s your level of intelligence 🙄

  • John Ayris says:

    He’s more than good enough for a third choice keeper. He fills one of the you must have home grown spots and he didn’t cost a fee when we’re going to need to find a lot of fees. It looks like prudent business to me.

    • Fed up with homegrown 3rd choice keeper's says:

      Why you keep repeating the same tosh about “homegrown” players? If he doesn’t play what does it matter that he’s f-in “homegrown”?!?

      • Steve Wells says:

        Trott is homegrown and I’ll bet he’d have been on a lot less money.

        • John Ayris says:

          Trott was sold for £2M is good money for a keeper of his experience. That’s 2M into the transfer fund that wouldn’t otherwise be there.

          Less experienced keeper out for £2M. More experienced one in for no fee. Neither will be on a high wage so only the difference between wages onto the wage bill.

      • John Ayris says:

        There has to be at least eight home grown players in the squad that’s the rule. There will be some penalty for not having eight.

        Whether they play or not does not matter as that’s not part of the rule.

        They do have to be there though that’s why it matters that he’s home grown.

        • John Ayris says:

          I’ve just looked and the penalty seems to be that at least eight need to be home grown in a squad of 25.

          If you only have seven then your squad has to be 24.

          If you only have six then your squad has to be 23. And so on. Not having them reduces your squad size.

        • John Ayris's Mum says:

          That is NOT the rule dumb dumb! At the end of last season we had a squad of just 22. Seven were homegrown,meaning we only had 15 overseas, you’re allowed 17 max. If we didn’t sign a third choice non-playing keeper this season, and had only a 24 man squad, what difference does it make?!? You don’t need 8 homegrown players, only a max of 17 foreign players is the rule.

    • Charlie Farley says:

      Spot on, again John. He’ll be a valuable squad member, getting a chance on the bench if one of the other two are not available …..or relied upon in the starting XI against lower league teams in the cup.

  • Andy P says:

    It makes sense from a home grown quota perspective, plus his wages are apparently surprisingly small. I’m on a work trip of the UK and I ran into some Blades fans, however, and their assessment of him was that he’s not good. They described him as lower championship/ league one quality. I don’t know if that was just bitterness towards West Ham or at losing the player, but they said his decision making was bad and that he’s not very brave at all. He hesitates and flaps. Anyway, let’s hope we never find out!

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