For six weeks now I have made excuses to myself. Excuses that gave me a valid reason not to write my regular weekly article.
Indeed, six weeks where I have sought reasons to stop myself sharing my thoughts and opinions with fellow fans. Something that I enjoy.
The main reason? How many times can you write about the same thing?
After collecting February’s Manager of the Month award, the smug grin from Sam said it all. He may as well have stood and cupped his ear at us, just as he did after the abysmal victory over Hull City.
In short, total disrespect. Disrespet to the people who club together each week and part with their hard earned cash in order to pay his alleged £60k-a-week wages.
I’ve purposely held this article back from publication this weekend in respect of Dylan Tombides and his family and West Ham United Football club. RIP Dylan.
It didn’t feel right to publish this article too early. I feel absolutely disgusted that Sam didn’t afford all of us with the same respect. In fact, I feel that the sad events of last week were used as a thinly veiled excuse for yet another totally inept performance against Crystal Palace on Saturday.
If anything, the performance should have mirrored the determination that young Dylan displayed for so long. A victory in his memory would have been perfect.
Okay, when two football purists like Allardyce and Pulis are in combat, you are being a tad naive if you are expecting a football extravaganza. But to get outplayed technically by Palace is just unacceptable.
I spoke to a large cross section of fans on my journey home on Saturday and the percentage of them that are sharing my discontent was a staggering 100%. I didn’t receive one single argument.
We have all seen strange substitutions from managers so many times. But what on earth was that about on Saturday? Two 6 foot plus centre forwards up top, and then take Downing and Jarvis off? The two players who have jointly supplied the Premier League’s highest number of crosses this season. Really, Sam? I’m sure I could hear him thinking “I’LL GIVE ‘EM TWO STRIKERS”. Absolutely pointless, just like the bloke who bought two guns but couldn’t afford any bullets.
So we are here again at the business end of the season. I’m hearing reports from within the club that an extra 20,000 season ticket holders will be the target they require to take with them to the Olympic Stadium. It might be an idea to try and hold on to the current season ticket holders first.
Turn the club back over to the fans first. Give us back some football. There are so many disgruntled fans out there at the moment, and I for one can’t remember the last time I enjoyed a game. We all know that it’s a tall order to fill 54,000 seats and, if we don’t offer the right product, it could well become insurmountable.
I do have respect for Sam Allardyce. I have respect for the way he came in and achieved the target he was given. Unfortunately, all he seems to do now is disrespect us as fans. The problem we have inherited here is that managers like him, and there are a few of his type in the game, build a team that play to one style.
This then, requires players that fit that system. It takes five years to build a team of mid to bottom of table mediocrity, and all of a sudden it will take five years to change it back. The manager has very quietly made himself irreplaceable and built a sack proof bubble around him. Bingo! Job for life.
Have you ever seen Sam’s previous club’s home games, or away come to that, filled to capacity? Apart from Newcastle United, I think they have all used the BOGOF slogan to sell tickets.
In short, by playing the Allardyce brand of football, our club will not fill the Olympic Stadium! Fact.
It will not allow any of our youngsters to move up through the youth ranks and further their careers at our club, either. I say “our club” because that’s what it is. It isn’t Sam Allardyce United and never will be. Messrs Sullivan and Gold respectfully quoted “The club belongs to the fans, we are just custodians.”
Big respect for that, gents, but can you remind Mr Allardyce, that we deserve respect from him also? Onwards and upwards needs to be the agenda at our club. Not, “lets finish 17th and pick up my money!”
We have never played such dreadful football in my memory. Having said that, I have only been attending since 1967. A lot longer than our manager. Even during relegation seasons we have produced entertaining football. No doubt Sam would say ”what have you won playing the West Ham way?”
My argument with that would be: “What have you won. Period.”
The club need to act now and beware the sack proof bubble. The management team has gone as far as it can, or can be allowed to go. I’m just one suffering fan. How many more out there are quietly pleased that the season is nearly over? I just want my enjoyment of the beautiful game to return, and give my neck a rest from watching hoofball.
I might also enjoy writing again.