Thursday, 17 December 2009
Bad Decision Making To Blame For West Ham's Relegation Woes
Never mind the financial mess we are in, we find ourselves in the bottom two because of rank bad footballing decisions for which somebody, or some persons, must be held accountable. It is hard to work out which decisions have hit us hardest but I have had a go below, listing them in rank order of abject incompetence:
1) Allowing Neill to leave without signing a replacement right back. Spector and Faubert are patently not up to the job and we are hopelessly exposed down our right flank every game. Look at how Eagles transformed the game when he was switched to the left of Burnley's midfield - from 5-0 and coasting, we were suddenly all over the shop! Duxbury and Zola share the blame here.
2) The failure to sign at least one more striker. Cole was always going to either get injured or suspended and yet, incredibly, we started the season with no back up whatsoever. Hines is promising but is not a like for like replacement for Cole and is not yet ready to start regularly. Poor Franco is trying but has no support whatsoever. Duxbury partly to blame here I suspect but Nani has to carry the can because he "sourced" Savio, Jimenez and Diamanti.
3) The sale of Collins to finance the purchase of Diamanti. The defence has been all over the shop ever since Collins left. Tomkins isn't ready yet and Zola and Clarke clearly don't think that Da Costa is either. Against Bolton, Tomkins had an absolute mare and we will be in all sorts of trouble against Chelsea if Upson still isn't ready. And let's face it, if you want to secure your place in the England squad, are you going to rush back for a date with Drogba? Are you going to hurry back for a bruising contest with Kevin Davies even? Meanwhile, Diamanti is not the striker we so desperately need. The guy is a nutter and against Bolton, despite scoring, was a liability for most of the match as he repeatedly gave away possession. Had we kept Collins, we would have won at Hull and probably achieved draws at Stoke, Birmingham and Bolton. Boy what we would give for 5 extra points now! Duxbury and Nani to blame here.
4)The signing of Savio with the Bellyache money. Of course it was a mistake to let Period Pains go but I don't think we had any choice. He would have brained Duxbury and Zola with a five iron had we refused to let him join Unreal City. There was absolutely no need to sign Savio however. We needed an experienced replacement, not yet another kid. We still haven't got one! Nani culpable.
5) Zola's tactics. They are inept. 4-3-3 didn't work last season so why return to it this? Playing Stanislas and Diamanti on the wrong flanks is crassly stupid. The failure to switch their flanks in mid game is even more absurd. Megson swapped his wide players on Tuesday, we didn't. Eagles was switched by Burnley and the game changed. Even when he makes substitutions, Zola changes the personnel, not the shape. He is out of his depth. Perhaps if he had Wenger's team, he might get away with it but Burnley, Stoke, Bolton, Blackburn and Hull all show that you shape your tactics to the personnel you have available. You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear - and Faubert, Kovac and Jimenez are definitely more crackling than cracking! Zola to blame here.
6) The signing of Kovac. Why waste money on yet another midfielder; and a distinctly ordinary one at that! Surely the priority should have been a full back or two and a forward? Why sell Collins and buy Kovac? Mad. Zola at fault here. He had plenty of opportunity to assess him last season so why did he buy him?
7) The failure to sign a replacement left back. Ilunga has been injured and out of form. You need cover for every position to survive in the Prem. Wolves and Pompey have virtually played two different sides in their two games this week. We don't have that luxury. Zola at fault here because he wanted to work with a smaller squad.
8) Signing Jimenez who is neither a forward nor a midfielder. The guy isn't mercurial, he is lightweight and distinctly ordinary. Another Nani balls up.
9) Letting Sears go out on loan and so leaving ourselves with NOBODY to play alongside Franco at Bolton and Birmingham. Duxbury to blame for not inserting a recall clause.
Have I forgotten anything - apart from trusting to the return to fitness of Ashton and Dyer? We could trawl back through Curbishley's mistakes but Zola has had over a year now to get things sorted and we have gone backwards on the pitch - big time!
Who is most to blame? I would sack the whole lot personally and start from scratch. That might have happened had Sullivan and Gold won control of the club but Straumur have what they want, a weak manager who allows the Board to asset strip his squad. The sale of Collins showed Upson, Parker and Green that all the promises from Duxbury were hollow. They are understandably hacked off about being lied to and will be the next out of the door.
Posted by Hammersfan at 16:42