So the inevitable bump back to “terra Firma” finally happened on Saturday, as an unlikely away point at Goodison Park was snatched away from us in the 81st minute by Everton substitute Romelu Lukaku.
Lukaku has acquired a very annoying habit of scoring against us, by the way. His debut goal for Everton pinched a point from us back in September. However, I don’t think many of us expected anything on Saturday, but I became more and more frustrated by the fact that we didn’t have a go at Everton. The first-half stats were a 75/25 % possession split in their favour and I think we are better than that.
The “Fantastic February” could well see Big Sam collect the Manager of the Month award but, are we happy?
West Ham fans have for years poured scorn on winning ugly. But if you look at a big percentage of our 31 points so far, that is exactly how they have been attained. Don’t get me wrong, Sam and the boys have been vindicated by the results of the last month and, as we know, four weeks in football can and has made a huge difference.
But, am I the only fan out there who cannot say, hand on heart: “Yep, I thoroughly enjoyed that game.” I’d genuinely love to know what the split between us as fans is on whether the draw at Chelsea was, as Jose Mourinho stated, “19th century.” “Who cares,” said we, as one.
That was the start of our little run. How enthralled were we by the home performance against Swansea then? Great result, yes. Was it a great exhibition of flowing football, though? Or is the memory of the ‘Triple Salchow perfectly executed by Senor Flores easier to recall?
I think we travelled to Villa Park and did exactly what we are capable of. We had a go at them. We bossed them instead of showing them too much respect. So why did we let Norwich City pass us off the park three days later?
Great result but I wish I’d got to my seat at 9:40pm that night. The game as a whole, from our point of view, was awful. The fact that we scored twice in the the last six minutes makes it a great result. Thought not a great performance.
The victory over Southampton was a fantastic result. I wouldn’t call it polished football, but Big Sam certainly exposed weaknesses in what for me is looking like a very good side in the Saints. I’d also like to praise Kevin Nolan for a great performance, rivalling Mark Noble for Man of the Match.
As Big Sam always insisted would happen, the points started coming when the injury list improved. But is it not fair to expect a team that gives us a bit more of the entertainment that we are used to?
Personally I dread the fact that, whoever we play at home, we are under a constant barrage of pressure for most of the game. We somehow get our noses in front with a goal out of the blue (cue Norwich) and then we are on the edge of our seats waiting for the ref to blow the whistle for the rest of the game.
When are we going to play football in a way that we are capable of? We’ve seen it this season, and last season, albeit sporadically.
“PLEASE SIR, CAN WE HAVE SOME MORE!”
Fair play Sam. You’ve shut the doubters up, me included. But sadly, for me, I’m struggling to remember getting home from a game and saying: “We were brilliant today, what a game.”
Is that too much to ask?