Saturday, September 17

More defensive howlers cost Hammers

West Brom 4 West Ham 2

Another shocker at the Hawthorns as we become the first team since the dawn of time to concede four to a Tony Pulis side. More comment to come after the application of smelling salts…

Having watched Match of the Day, we conceded four terrible goals. The penalty was a crazy hand ball from Masuaku and for the second Ogbonna should have hit row Z, while Kouyate and Collins didn't get tight enough on their men. Masuaku lost his man for the third and the fourth was ridiculous with ten men up for a corner allowing an easy breakaway. At least we showed a little spirit to pull back two goals and Payet hit the angle with a brilliant free kick, while Collins also went close. But it was very worrying defensively. If we play like this we'll be in a relegation fight.

We shouldn't be losing games where we have 71 per cent possession and 23 shots (though only five on target). Antonio is the joint top scorer in the Premier League but it's all undone by our defensive woes and lack of protection in midfield. Noble was hauled off at half-time and Kouyate hasn't matched last season's standards. Surely Obiang deserves a game in front of the back four? Byram and Reid missed the game, apparently with knocks. Nortdveit doesn't look the answer at right back and we still badly miss Aaron Cresswell. Winston Reid will surely come back in and Arbeloa, Oxford and Randolph might also be in contention after the last two weeks. We have to find a way of stopping the goals against us and no-one should be undroppable.

5 comments:

Robin watt said...

I cannot believe I'm reading that there are ???westham supporters calling for Bilic head. I totally get that the start of the season has been awful but last season we overachieved and to build sometimes there will be setbacks. At the present moment we are a homeless club. Yes, we have a fantastic new stadium but it isn't home yet. We will need a season to settle in maybe two and we need to all realise this. Saying this, the defensive performances have been unforgivable and we have the right man in charge to sort this out. I for one have total faith in Slav, he's always been the man for me

Pete May said...

I agree Robin, Bilic has a lot of credit in the bank from last season and can't have turned into a bad manager overnight. Could be a transitional season and all the top six have improved...

matt said...

Too right. This isn't a crisis. I'm a real Hammers fan, and I know what a crisis is. There's 14-year-olds who won't sit down singing "where were you at Upton Park?" Well, unlike them, I was at Oldham, at Southend where the away fans outnumbered the home fans, I was relegated at Birmingham. I know the bad times, these are not them. Take the positives, we'll improve, we'll be fine.

Tom Smyth said...

Pete, I completely agree with your comments. Bilic needs to dig a few people out in training this week regardless of who they are & nobody should be "undropable". We are not defending properly as a unit. Last season he said "When we have the ball we are all attackers & we don't have it we are 11 defenders". That has not happened this season. The midfield is shot to pieces & consequently that is putting too much pressure on the defence. Too many of them (especially Kouyate & Noble) are simply not working hard enough & seem out of sorts. Lanzini & Payet also need to up their game & track back & help out too. If I had to pick a team for tomorrow (assuming all were fit) it would be Adrain - Arbeloa, Reid, Ogbonna, Cresswell - Obiang, Oxford, Feghouli, Antonio, - Payet - Carroll. I like Lanzini but is having him in the team with Payet a luxury that we can afford? I know things will improve for us this season & Bilic is still a great manager.

Pete May said...

Good points Tom. For all the defensive mistakes they'e not getting much protection from the midfield and there must now be a case for playing Obiang or Oxford as a holding midfielder, while even Nordtveit must be better than he's shown so far. Payet and Lanzini are quite similar and for games like West Brom we could maybe bring on Lanzini later on to run at tiring defences. A lot for Slaven to think about.