Wednesday, January 22

We're not really here…

West Ham 0 Manchester City 3 (Capital One Cup)

For the first time ever you can arrive at Ken’s Café 15 minutes before kick off, walk to the front of the queue and get instant service. One local bookmaker has offered “the keys to the shop” should West Ham win 7-0.

The Boleyn Stadium is more deserted than a Lord Rennard speech at a Lib-Dem feminist convention. Only 14,390 supporters have turned up, presumably those who bought tickets before the first leg, and we’re sill waiting for our £45 refunds. Fraser, Matt (in a Man City-blue coat by Paul Smith) Lisa, Nigel and myself sit blissfully alone in the East Stand.

Carroll starts, but bizarrely we don’t play with any wingers. And Chambers, a right-back, remains on the bench. City score after two minutes as Negredo eludes Tomkins to head home Lopes’s cross. We’ll have to leave it late to get those eight goals. Terrible marking from the central defenders.

Nolan does have the ball in the net but it’s correctly disallowed for offside. Young Lopes looks lively for City and dances round Diarra with disarming ease. City go two up when Aguero skips round Taylor and Rat before poking home like it’s a training session. The one positive of the first half is that Carroll puts himself about and is not scared of clattering City defenders.

Carlton Cole comes on for Carroll in the second half and Joe Cole has to go off injured after 47 minutes. Downing immediately improves things and gets in some decent crosses. Morrison makes one great dribble into the box but is generally played too deep. Carlton Cole is up for the fight and outspeeds Lescott to get in a shot against Pantilimon.

Matt and Lisa predict a 7-0 win
Negredo wraps it up with a third as again he dances past Johnson and Taylor to poke home after 59 minutes. “Nine-nil in your Cup Final!” chant the City fans.

Cole then goes close with a header just wide from a corner, and Diame collides with Cole in the box when well placed, but our main concern is keeping the score down to three. Negredo is still tracking back to the right back position with City 9-0 up on aggregate, the sign of a great player. Even City’s sub Jovetic is a £22 million player. Couldn’t the ref stop it on points? The League Against Cruel Sports should be informed about this. It seems much worse than hare coursing.

“We’re not really here!” chant the City fans, ignoring the fact that it is the West Ham fans who are not really here. Strangely Matt leaves ten minutes before the end to work the night shift, assuming we won’t make a late comeback.

Diame is stretchered off as our usual injury arrives on 69 minutes. Mercifully the ref only plays one minute of added time.

In the Boleyn, a bit like West Ham, they’re scraping the bottom of the barrel for the last pint of London Pride. But at least we have plenty of space. 

Nine-nil! Nine-bloody nil! We all feel like Michael Palin in Ripping Yarns. A strange game, more like a training exercise, but City are miles ahead of West Ham. The only consolation is that we don’t have to play them again until the final game of the season, which we may need to win to stay up…

TEAM RATINGS: Jaaskelainen 6, Taylor 5, Johnson 4, Tomkins 5, Rat 4, Diarra 4, Morrison 6, Nolan 5, Diame 5 (Collison n/a), Joe Cole 4 (Downing 6), Carroll 5 (Carlton Cole 6). 


matt said...

More bad news, we have missed out on Mido, who is the new manager of Zemalek in Egypt. If he can manage like he played for West Ham....Still, Judas is available.

Pete May said...

Mido could still do a job for us up front… and Belly Busters burger bar would benefit!