web analytics

What sort of club is wanted should the For Sale sign go up?



By Candh’s top blogger Allen Cummings


Ok, the FOR SALE sign finally goes up at the London Stadium. It becomes official. Buyers are welcome. Viewings invited.

What follows?  At that point there isn’t much we can do except sit and wait – and being realistic, it could be a long wait.

Let’s look at Newcastle – a bigger club and to use a word I hate – brand – that is bigger than ours:

That club has been for sale for a number of years, with  PCP Capital Partners previously made a £250m bid before talks fell apart. They are now – several years later – in negotiations with a consortium at a reported price of around £340 million.

Last year, it was reported that Sheikh Khaled bi Zayed Al Nehayan was close to buying , but no deal went ahead.

Mike Ashley has proved to be unpopular with Newcastle United fans, as thousands of supporters have boycotted matches this season to protest his ownership.  Fans have also travelled to protest outside the retailer’s shareholder meetings.

The situation at the London Stadium and St James’ Park would appear to reflect each other!

So what happens at West Ham while while we’re waiting? We have complained long and hard that the present incumbents have never had a plan or strategy, a definite direction in which to head. So let’s use that waiting time to work on what would be our preferred plan for the future of our club?

Are we looking for mega-rich overseas owners prepared to bankroll a spending spree? Buy ourselves an ‘instant’ place at the top table. Money being no object. Maybe we’re looking for a big brand, multi-national company, a kind of Red Bull ownership deal perhaps? The kind that’s happened elsewhere.

Or maybe we are prepared to bite the bullet and take the longer term strategy. If we slip out of the Premier League and our market value drops maybe we’d become affordable to a rich individual who also happens to be a genuine football fan (not compulsory of course).

Someone prepared to build from the bottom, invest in youth – create a new West Ham from the ashes. Would that be acceptable. Would we be prepared to wait?

We know where this club has been. It’s written in our history –  but like the Boleyn – it’s gone. Never forgotten, but undeniably in the past.

If this, and it’s still a big IF, is meant to herald a new dawn, what do we want the West Ham of the future to be? What kind of club do we want to leave for the young Hammers of today? So many questions – the big problem is going to be finding the right answer!

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

13 comments on “What sort of club is wanted should the For Sale sign go up?

  1. I think it would completely depend on the wealth of the new owners? If they were ‘GSB wealthy’, as opposed to a Man City wealthy, then we’d accept a long term strategy, honesty, transparency and actual effort in trying to achieve that goal. We wouldn’t expect £50m signings in every position, but if the club know they need 2/3 players to avoid relegation, attempts to actually sign said players, as opposed to cheap sticking plaster loans and has beens.

    As Joe Cole said, we’re not a hard bunch to please, we just want to see effort, strategy and a long term vision that runs through the club from top to bottom.

    • Totally agree, honesty, a strategy and a replacement for Brady who is more interested in the club than self promotion

  2. Anybody but GSB please. Cannot wait for the day they leave the club which they have destroyed and used as a cash cow. They have embarrassed the club on numerous occasions and we have become a laughing stock. It is not about rich owners who bank roll the club. More important is having people who are honest and put infrastructure in place. Someone who will come in and upgrade our training facilities and not use his friends in the media to say that he has saved the club. A chairman who does not undermine managers, but back them. I could go on but I like most and I say most real West Ham supports have had enough of the GSB regime.

  3. We do not need new owners we need the following
    They say the club is in a lot of debt bank debt and owners loans sell a key player I.e rice and clear it all
    Also the training facilities are dreadful again sell a key player Anderson and invest in the training facilities
    Then any money we do have available in the summer use to rebuild the team and if we have to sell a sooo to do that as well then do it
    It can’t get any worse we can’t have a poor side bad debt and poor training grounds make the sacrifices and rebuild from scratch

    • Fundamental problem with that, Ben, is that our owners aren’t going to do any of it. You only have to watch Sunday Supplement’s analysis of the owners history of investment at Birmingham and now us to know that they’re not going to take the club forward.

      We seriously just need owners who will honestly work towards a vision for the club. Whether that be a big spend strategy or a a strategy of buying the stadium, improving the training ground whilst accepting that we can’t afford big budget players during that time. Agree or disagree with a vision, if new owners were to follow through on promises (or ‘pledges’…) we, as fans, would have to accept that it’s a better scenario than the lying, dishonest, self-serving owners we have now.

      I’d genuinely rather spend less on players every year, buying properly scouted targets (e.g. Leicester), with a % of spend going on infrastructure. This whole strategy of buying players put to us by agents is utterly ridiculous in modern football.

  4. Anyone who puts the club first and does all they can to make this club a success if there city rich brilliant
    But if there not as rich but have the club at heart and wishes to make the club a success brilliant
    Id much prefer us to mimic the redbull brand without being redbull spend millions on the training grounds ( a one of the future) invest in the youth and play the youth similar to ajax and only spend say 50m on one player and the rest is relied on a youth system thats trained the same as the first team. And when were semi successful buy the stadium and start again builiding a fortress.
    Also a world class scouting network where we only target youths and bring them into the project and either sell for profit or drafted into the first team.
    I also believe. There should be a clause in every managers contract that stipulates at least two youths should be drafter in to either 50% bench apperances and 25% starting every season.

  5. Play Johnson, Cardoso and silva. Loose Santos, Balbuena, Wiltshire and replace with Long, Guirassy and Soucek, a plan positive action, do something. This squad was not good enough under Pellegrino why would it be any better under Moyes

  6. What’s this sudden fascination with the training ground? For years it was a case of ‘the pitches at Chadwell Heath cause injuries’, so we moved to specially prepared pitches that replicate the OS at Rush Green. Now we have a sudden – on the back of a Tottenham fan’s tweet and a journalist’s comment – desire to spend a shedload of cash on a new training environment. I appreciate it’s all part of a bigger picture, but at the forefront of every comment? Really?

    • Diamond Geezer, appreciate what you say, but we’re in a world where we’ve got to compete with the likes of Spurs, Chelsea, Everton, Leicester etc to sign good players. If we had a good scouting network, we could get more ‘little known’ players through but as we’ve just seen with Gedson going to Spurs over us, players now have a choice. There’s a high chance we’re going to miss out on top players when they have the choice to play for 5/6 clubs because they’ll come and look at our club (including the training ground) and think we have no ambition, we don’t invest and as such, they’re never going to be in with a chance of playing in Europe or winning anything. Why come to play at West Ham and train by some portacabins every day when you can play at Leicester or Everton who are showing ambition and investment.

      The training ground plays a part in that – why do you think multinational companies move to high spec offices? It’s a multitude of reasons – image, staff morale, making coming in to work a better experience.

  7. Toady not sure who Santos is I presume you mean Sanchez and if you alsowant Shane Long sorry fella he ain’t the answer imo and I don’t know who is..Although Long maybe better than Ajeti. .and Ben when you say sell so and so and so and so and invest in the training facilities. .yep fine but who do you replace them with ? The pick of our bunch of youth are loaned out or have been sold ie Samuelson.what a prospect he was when he hit our set up and now after countless loans here there and everywhere SOLD HULL CITY😤😤

  8. Sorry Toady I miss understood the Long you were writing about not Shane but the American Arron ..my apologies m8

  9. I think we have to accept that the whole structure of the club has to go back to basics, and more thought on the future as to what everyone wants and what West Ham are really about ? If going down means change of personel from top to bottom that has to be ? We can’t keep carrying on with this mentality of thinking we are a big club when quite evidently our board doesn’t act with a big board mentality so us fans need to know we have been sold a dream that was a ‘pie crust promise’ by people who probably believed in that as their own dream but in reality they like to keep their money in their bank accounts? When someone buys a club they are investigated as fit for purpose to buy a club, not any old willy nilly ? And l would suggest the owners instead of trying to buy random signings in the future do a fit for purpose investigation on future signings to see how they suit us rather than do we suit them?? Sheffield United since being taken over by an Arabian owners have put all that in place ( they don’t always go for big name players but ones that suit their planing strategy) as before that they were owned by a chairman not to far away from what we have at West Ham now ,and like what spuds had with Alan Sugar? till they were taken over by Joe Lewis and he put David Levy in charge and look what spuds have gone on from that change ( “hurts me to say”) If change whether forced on us by relegation or new owners or keeping the present owners need to know THE CLUB NEEDS TO BE RUN IN A DIFFERENT WAY FROM TOP TO BOTTOM. THATS OWNERS DOWN TO PLAYING STAFF??? Because in the end, us mortals pass on, but a club like West Ham should not ? and those people given the chance to make this great club carry on in all its history and traditions can’t ? Then should step aside and give the reins to someone who can or have a better chance of achieving what everyone who supports this famous club wants? Keeping the faith C.O.Y.I

  10. D G ~ The training and fitness facilities are about a whole lot more than having a couple of pitches that replicate the OS! Why are clubs,much smaller than ours building multi million pound state of the art facilities?
    Likewise scouting – bragging about some new fangled electro data scouting service as if we are the only ones using it!
    Where an earth is all the money being spent on? Not on building or improving our own stadium, not on specialised personnel to run the football side of the business, not on the training and fitness facilities,not on youth development, other than the basics and having a punt on few other clubs’ “rejects”.
    It’s all being spent on reactive/vanity/desperate and agent led signings – A constant cycle of “push the boat out” quickly followed by “pull it back in” Not one manager has been allowed to build on his initial “spending investment” and as regular as night follows day, they all fail,imo.

Comments are closed.