Saturday, 9 May 2009
The Day The Wheels Came Off
So, this was the day the wheels came off - but then we were playing Liverpool so what do you expect? There was the West Ham coach, sitting in the queue for the ferry to Europe, engine chugging a little under the strain of so many worn parts, when in 76 seconds flat, the Scousers had jacked up the bus and whipped off the wheels. From that point forward, there was only going to be one outcome.
Yes Liverpool were clinical but the defeat was down to us more than down to any brilliance from the team destined to finish runners up in the Premiership. The Torres pass to Gerrard was good but Kovac checked his own run and did nothing about Gerrard's, raising his hand in a "Please sir it was me" gesture as Gerrard galloped onto the ball. Upson was half a yard deeper than the rest of the defence and Gerrard said "Ta very much".
The second goal summed up Boa perfectly. Yes of course he should have had a free kick when Mascherano cut him in two, but why he then charged into his own box and tugged and pulled and pushed at Torres until he went to ground, only Boa can explain. Except Boa probably doesn't think he did anything wrong. He was still in the red mist of the earlier incident. What reason he possesses, and it is precious little at the best of times, had evaporated completely in the furnace of his indignation.
Boa was poor all game. Yes he put in a number of challenges but his distribution was absolutely dire. In that he was not alone. Did Lucas pass to a player in Claret & Blue all night? Defensively he was okay, except for the two times he went walkabout, but his passing radar was all to cock tonight as, time and time again, he lost possession in the twenty or so yards beyond the half way line.
Mind you, who did he have to pass to? Tristan was moderate and Di Michele was, once again, bloody awful. How ridiculous was his attempt to claim a penalty after his risible attempt to capitalise on Carrragher's slip? That has to be one of the worst efforts on goal followed by one of the worst dives ever. He should have been sent off three times over - for the professional foul on himself when clean through on goal, for the dreadful dive and ludicrous appeal for a penalty, but most of all for "gross incompetence on a football field"! I would say that he should never be picked again but what is the alternative? Sears? The boy runs around but that's about it isn't it?
In midfield Stanislas was again found wanting. I hope I am wrong but I fear he will be a Fizzy Pop player one day soon. Noble was combative and drove the team forward but his set piece delivery was decidedly average. Kovac missed our second best chance and was hopelessly at fault for the opening goal. Collison, thankfully, looked class when he came on. We need him against Everton and Miserableboro.
Green was excellent, in front of Fabio, and was desperately unlucky with the penalty. Upson and Tomkins were okay but neither will remember the game fondly. Ilunga did ok too. But it was not a day to remember all round.
The bus to Europe is now jacked up on piles of bricks. Wasn't Cole meant to be targeting this game for his return? Wasn't there talk from Zola of pressing Beano into action before the end of the season? Where exactly is Dyer? Why have we bought Savio exactly?
Suddenly Calais seems a very long way away!
Player Ratings: Green 8; Neill 5; Upson 6, Tomkins 6, Ilunga 7; Boa 3: Kovac 5; Noble 7, Stanislas 4; Tristan 5, Di Michele 0 Subs: Collison 8, Sears 5; Payne (Unfair to rate!)
Posted by Hammersfan at 19:32