Sunday, November 21

That's why we're going down?

Liverpool 3 West Ham 0

Thankfully my local is showing Ireland versus the All Blacks so I’m spared watching this. And also I have to prepare for a dinner party in Crouch End with Spurs fans’ sipping champagne after winning at Arsenal.

Yes, like half the team, I’m not fit to wear the shirt as I sob into the spinach and wild mushroom bake.

It sounds dire on’s live scores and the texts on my mobile at 3-0 confirm it’s abject, possibly one of the worst performances ever seen from a West Ham side. Without Parker we go from poor to pathetic.

“Grant out! This is embarrassing. If we keep it to six we will be lucky,” texts Matt.

“Grant’s last game,” adds Nigel.

Somehow we keep the score down in the second half, simply because Liverpool settle for three and Rob Green does a great double save.

Match of the Day reveals a complete failure to close Johnson down as he chests the ball and fires home the opener, a stupid handball from Gabbidon for the penalty and Obinna losing the ball on the edge of our box before Maxi has the freedom of our area to head the third. Our defence looks as safe as the Irish banks.

The away fans amuse themselves with chants of “That’s why we’re going down!” when Obinna slices wide and “Paolo Di Canio!” and “You’re getting sacked in the morning!” at Grant.

Our one near chance in the second half comes when sub Barrera crosses for Piquionne to miscue his header.

The Observer writes that “A butterfly possesses stronger wings than West Ham's left flank of Obinna and Ilunga, and more heart.” While Hamish Mackay of Over Land And Sea says: “This was the most shocking, gutless and incompetent display I have ever witnessed from a West Ham team.”

I don’t like sacking managers but it’s getting impossible to defend Avram Grant. It’s the lack of passion and basic closing down that is most worrying. At least a Curbishley or Pardew figure would shuffle the squad and restore some defensive nous. Is his morose style likely to inspire the players? He looks like a man who’s just placed his mortgage on Kieron Dyer playing 38 games a season.

And to cite injuries and claim that he will “take the second half performance” is stretching credulity to its limits since the second half was played at training pace and Gerrard was out for Liverpool.

From day one he’s placed far too much faith in injury prone players past their best such as Boa Morte, Dyer and Gabbidon and signed unconvincing players in Reid, Obinna and Barrera.

At my Crouch End dinner party at least DC has an anecdote about the Stranglers’ Jean Jacques Burnel writing a verse for his band during a soundcheck.

Indeed, as the Men in Black once sang: Something Better Change.


Anonymous said...

as the men in black STILL sing! stranglers are touring in march :)

Pete May said...

Good point, well made.

Lot of Hammers fans saying Go Buddy Go to Grant and reflecting that there are No More Heroes. Makes the Play-off win/Cup Final era seem like the Golden Brown years...