Tuesday, November 10

Mersey beat

West Ham 1 Everton 2

Strangely they’re no cocktails on offer in Ken’s Café. Several of our Irons contingent have been out late on Saturday night to the London Cocktail Club celebrating my birthday, somewhat belatedly since it was back in August. And maybe I shouldn’t have had those final two martinis…

But Gavin came up with a signed picture of Tevez and Mascherano and my other presents included Brian Belton’s Black Hammers, a book of Steve Bacon photos and a Hammers duck for the bath.

We discuss the News of the World’s story about John Terry’s dad. Will we insult his mum or dad when we play Chelsea? And we agree that Everton are our bogey team as we never seem to beat them. They might have injuries, but their starting X1 still appears strong/.

In the first half neither team plays well. Faubert has a couple of dangerous crosses. Parker creates a half-chance. Everton score with their only chance, when Cahill lays the ball off for Saha to score with a minimum of backlift. That’s five in three games against us.

At least Da Costa is looking OK. Franco and Hines aren’t getting much change from the excellent Yobo and Distin though and we miss Carlton. It’s too much for the vicar’s son next to me. “Take a proper corner! Don’t try to thread it through the eye of a needle! That’s s**t!”

“This is no way to commemorate Remembrance Day, we’re defending more like the Maginot line,” suggests Matt. At half-time I thank Fraser for the bottle of whisky he gave and suggest it might be needed later tonight.“Why didn’t you give him the pearl-handled revolver as well, to make it the full West Ham supporters kit?” suggests Matt. We await a half time appearance from Kate Perry, but instead have to be content with a tiny Vera Lynn impersonator singing “We’ll Score Again…”

Zola brings on Stanislas for Collison and puts Hines in a wider position for the second half, and eventually brings on Diamanti. But Everton double their lead with their second shot, Gosling profiting from a scramble on the edge of the box, shooting at Green but then netting the rebound. The loyal home crowd immediately burst into a chorus of Bubbles.

But a minute later Diamanti plays a beautiful through ball to Stanislas who lobs the keeper. The ball heads for the line and Hibbert can only kick the ball into the roof of his own net.

We have a good final half hour. Everton sub Lucas Neill is serenaded with “There’s only one fat Greedy bastard!” Diamanti has another great free kick well saved. Franco has a good goal disallowed for offside.

Hines is through one-on-one but pokes his effort wide of the post. A Diamanti through ball create another half-chance for Hines but he gets his angles wrong again. It will do Hines good in the long term to experience the ups and downs of the game, although this afternoon his misses have cost us a draw, even if he is getting in the right positions.

The man from Diamanti gets a bit selfish with two shots late on, but you still wonder why he’s not starting in the team because he’s the only player who can cross or take a set piece and makes things happen.

Everton hold on and we’re back in the bottom three. Maybe we should sign Harry Redknapp’s Missus. There’s a minor incident in the Central afterwards when Matt asks for a vodka martini, shaken not stirred, and is nearly shaken firmly by the neck.

On the district line I ponder the fixtures and think things will improve. From Boxing Day we have home games against Portsmouth, Wolves, Blackburn, Birmingham, Hull, Bolton, Stoke, Sunderland, and Wigan. If we pick our best team then surely we can win most of those? Can’t we?


GG said...


Pete May said...

Drat, might as well give up now then. But on the way we've played at home so far, I still think we can beat most of those sides..