Tuesday, December 8

Sick as a parrot

West Ham 0 Manchester United 4

Her Indoors wants me to go on the Climate Change march, but instead it’s the Irons versus the Mancs. In my defence West Ham never threaten to make Europe so we never have to take continental flights and we do have a Green in goal.

The best part of the game is a free SboBet scarf on the seat. We are without Upson, Cole, Noble and Behrami, while ominously United have Berbatov and Owen on the bench.

The first half is fairly even. United have a makeshift defence of Fletcher at right back and Neville and Brown as centre backs and look out of sorts.

Early on Giggs misplaces a pass to Hines who crosses for Collison to just miss connecting in front of goal. Hines worries them occasionally with his speed and Franco looks clever on the ball, but it’s Giggs who is running the game.

Indeed the United fans sing, “Giggs will tear you apart again”. Although if we’re using Joy Division chants then perhaps “He’s lost control again”, might be more appropriate for us. Or “Don’t walk away in silence.”

Without Cole we never test United’s weak back four even after Neville and Brown limp off. Michael Carrick comes on to play centre half and we make him look like Franz Beckenbauer.

The 45 minutes is up and we all have to do is defend properly to go in at 0-0.Only we don’t. We fail to clear three times and Scholes volleys home from the edge of the box.

“How bad was that? Three times we could have cleared it. What sort of a f***ing clearance was that from Collison? And that header from Spector was terrible… United won’t play as badly in the second half, that’s for sure…” complains the Vicar’s son beside me.

We show some bite at the start of the second half with Stanislas checking for some reason when it looks as if he could have reached Franco’s through ball. But you know United will improve and a great counter attack involving Giggs, Rooney and Anderson ends with Gibson firing home a cracker from the edge of box.

Hines goes off injured. “It’s a real sign of a relegation team when you pick up injuries from nowhere,” mutters Nigel sagely.

Substitute Diamanti has a fine free kick tipped away by Kuszczak, having earlier shot wildly over from another dead ball.

Then we collapse in similar fashion to the last 30 minutes against Burnley. Valencia taps home unmarked from a left wing cross and then Rooney steals in to score a minute later from Evra’s cross.

And Robert Green has been sick (as a parrot) in goal. He is feeling nauseous, like most of us, and has to be substituted by Kurucz. My daughter later asks, “What if the ball had landed in the sick?” Now there’s a potential moment for “What Happened Next?”

Spector has been roasted again (no, not in that sense). Collison is mistiming everything and doesn’t look fit, Ilunga looks nothing like the star of last season and Stanislas has a poor game too.

Luckily United take it easy late on. Stanislas misses the target when he should score late on and it sums up our afternoon. Nigel, who is seeing Status Quo next week and is worried we are going down, down, deeper and down, starts to wonder if Zola’s job is safe.

“So much for my lucky scarf!” quips Fraser as we leave. Nigel has received a text from a gloating Manc. “Tosser! He doesn’t even live in Manchester!”

Crucial away games at Birmingham and Bolton are coming. And like the climate change deniers we have no defence. Our back four is not sustainable and can not control its emissions. Can anyone save planet West Ham?


Pete May said...

My pal Mouth of the Mersey suggests the Joy Division song that applies to West Ham should be Atrocity Exhibition.

Although Matt says New Dawn Fades. Personally I think our defence needs to get Closer and not play in Isolation. There's too much Disorder and not enough strikers getting Interzone…

Matt said...

Moving into New Order territory (which is probably what we need) it was certainly a Blue Monday, due to the lack of Technique leaving us In a Lonely Place and full of Regret, and furious at the Power, Corruption and Lies that have left us bankrupt, as resulting of the banking Low-Life. But Dreams Never End, and being a Hammers fan is all about True Faith, so Get Ready for our revival. Just hope there's no January fire sale, otherwise it will be a case of Everything's Gone Green...Which could provide a new terrace anthem for us: "Help me, somebody help me/I wonder where I am."

matt said...

On the plus side, Craig Bellamy has swine flu

Pete May said...

Did any of those songs set the World in Motion?