As the dust settles on another defeat in a cup for West Ham it’s hard to find many positives when you think we’re only just in to September and we have only one chance of silverware left.
While we all started off the season with great dreams of where West Ham would finish in the league, it’s looking likely we will spend the season looking over our shoulder at the bottom half of the league rather than chasing a Europa League place – where I think we should at least be competing at that level.
So, positives. What are they? Well let’s look at previous years of the Capital One Cup. This is a completion that has given teams a chance to win silverware, qualify for Europe and give long suffering fans a day to remember at Wembley.
A cup run can also cause difficulties for teams who don’t have the luxury of a squad of players whose second team could probably qualify for Europe.
West Ham certainly fall in to that category after last year’s cup run which saw us reach the semi-final only to be humiliated by Man City. If we look at the results immediately after all our Capitol One cup games and it doesn’t make good reading…
After 2nd round – Lost to Stoke
After 3rd round – Lost to Hull
After 4th round – Drew with Aston Villa
After 5th round – Lost to Manchester United
After Semi-Final 1st-leg – Beat Cardiff
After Semi-Final 2nd-leg – Drew with Chelsea
Three losses, two draws and one win shows how much a stretch it was on our squad that they struggled each game after a midweek cup game.
Survival in the Premier league has to be our priority this season, as with the Olympic Stadium project getting closer, we cannot afford to be relegated.
In fact we can’t afford to be fighting at the bottom again as we will not attract quality players. We still have a small panel of first team players and come the hard winter this team won’t be able to cope with the demand of three games in seven days some weeks.
If we had of won the three games against Stoke, Hull and Villa that nine points would’ve had us in 10th place and a less nervy season would’ve been so much more enjoyable. These players and management have one less excuse this season to blame if our promised top ten place is not gained.