Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Reading 5 Arsenal 7

The Game's Gone Crazy. Enough said!

Stunning Leeds Dump Out Southampton

Amazing. It could yet be glory, glory Leeds United under Ken Bates as the once mighty Whites progressed through to the quarter final of the League Cup. The three nil thumping of the sorry Saints increases the pressure on Adkins who must be wondering what the fcuk has happened to the team he managed to a glorious promotion last season. It just shows how confidence determines results!

Meanwhile, Leeds fans must hope that the cup run is not a distraction from the push for promotion. Cardiff have suffered for their progress in the cups and Birmingham, of course, were relegated whilst winning the Carling Piss Pot.

But no churlishness from me even though this was a Southampton second 11. The Leeds players, Warnock and Master Bates deserve all the credit tonight. Stunning! But will Bates want to bow out if Leeds do book a place at Wembley? He could yet be hailed a Leeds hero!

Clattenbung Under Investigation At Last!

Well it had to happen sooner or later, but an investigation for racist language directed at Chelsea players is not what I expected!

This guy has always had a whiff about him as far as I'm concerned. There's too much controversy. Too often he is the headline story rather than the players involved in the game in which he is officiating. The ludicrous Merseyside derby a couple of years back stands out most in the memory, but this weekend's game between Chelsea and Man Utd was destined to rank up alongside it, even without the allegation that Clattenbung directed racist language at two Chelsea players.

So, what did the bastard in the black say? Maybe he reversed the word order! Apparently, his fellow officials will have heard everything he said but can we trust them to ditch the dirt on one of their own? Unlikely.

Monday, 29 October 2012

Zola Curse At Watford Strikes Again

So, poor GianFredo is perplexed again after Watford folded to yet another defeat. According to the adorable Italian, there seemed no way that Blackburn would score as the game ticked into the 90th minute. The former West Ham manager complained:

"I honestly couldn't see them scoring because they were not causing any particular problems to our defence so I thought the game was gone.

But you have teams that never give up until the end so you can't say the game is gone."

He added: "I can't classify it as a fortunate goal. With no disrespect towards Rhodes who scored a good goal, but probably towards the end we started to defend too deep and when you do that, you know it's always a risk."

Bloody hell, after all these years in the game you would have thought that Zola would have realised that it is a 90 minute (plus injury time) game and that it only takes a second to score a goal.

If Watford were defending too deep, why the fcuk didn't he do something about it?

And as for "teams that never give up until the end", might I suggest that he coaches his team to last out a game? To lose one game in the 90th minute may be bad luck, to lose two in succession screams incompetence and, as we always thought at West Ham, poor physical conditioning.


Sunday, 28 October 2012

Time Running Out For Warnock At Leeds

Bugger April, January is the cruelest month if you are a football manager running a club that has recently been purchased by new owners. Warnock had the full backing of Fernandes at QPR until the January window opened, and suddenly the axe was sharpened at a rate of knots.

Old Big Gob is caught between a rock and a hard place. He wants the take over to happen because then money MIGHT be available to invest in new players; but the earlier the new owners come in, the more likely it is that he will be replaced in January. If Leeds are sitting in mid table by the time the window opens - and Leeds are currently in eleventh and going backwards - the new owners will almost certainly get trigger happy.

The fans are already getting impatient. Sample the comments left on the YEP website and you find the finger of blame pointing less at Master Bates and more at Midshipman Warnock. So one flat cap writes: "Look, let's call the beast by its proper name eh? We were absolutely shiite today, bloody awful and we didn't deserve a single thing from the game today. We are fast looking as though we've run out of gas. Last 4 games we've been awful. I'm starting to wonder if Neil's lost his interest"; (sic)

whilst a whippet owner adds:  "Oh dear! What a sad excuse. Admittedly, Warnock has had little, or no, money to spend but he's rebuilt the team and, so far, it's no better than Grayson's outfits. He's reckoned to be a motivator of players but, over the past four games, they appear to have lacked any form of motivation whatsoever. He also, increasingly, appears to be tactically inept"; (sic)

and a Yorkshire Pudding opines: "I'm sorry Neil but how have you improved the squad? Are we stronger in any department? If GFH have invested £2m and you have income from the sale of Snodgrass and Clayton, why do we seem no better than last season? These sales and buys were your decisions. Goalkeeper was not a problem but this seems to be where you have spent most of your money. You have the bonus of Byram but have let Poleon go out on loan when we are desperate for a striker. Austin and EHD seem improvements on last year's squad but the rest of your buys seems little better that what they have replaced. You will leave us at the end of the season with an aging squad. I am no fan of Grayson but is Warnock an improvement. Perhaps we need to start planning now for next season?" (sic)

These fans, despite their spelling issues, are right of course. Warnock has refashioned the squad in his own image and the squad is utterly and completely mediocre. It's true that Bates has been tight with the purse strings, but have Hull City spent big this summer or Miserablebrough or Palace? Bates has backed Warnock in the same way most Championship chairmen have backed their managers, telling him to build his squad out of the flotsam and jetsam jettisoned by the bigger clubs in the game - clubs like Norwich, QPR, Doncaster and Portsmouth in the case of Leeds seemingly.

All summer I warned that if you pick up players from teams that struggled last season in the Championship then the end result would be, at best, a mediocre team. But Leeds fans insisted differently, claiming the likes of Green and Varney would suddenly become world beaters once they pulled on the famous all white kit. Well it is time to think again. This team is what it is, a collection of journeymen who are journeying nowhere in particular, ambling along the country lanes of mid table obscurity.

And meanwhile, the club is rudderless. Bates just wants his money. Warnock wants even more players but can't even meet wage demands, never mind transfer fees. And GFH /GFC are trusting to the will of Allah whilst employing solicitors to check out every dot on every i and every cross on every t before committing their hypothetical money.

It's all a recipe for disaster. The optimists insist that a few wins will see Leeds back in the mix, but they have yet to break into the top six and two points from the last nine, against very average sides, do not suggest that Warnock's team are benefiting from "gelling". In fact the reverse is happening. The early burst of adrenaline has passed and now these average joes are marking time in the Championship, picking up a wage for what they do second best, winning the odd game, drawing the odd game, losing the odd game. Which explains the position in the table.

But that league position is hardly likely to satisfy owners who claim their business model is based on milking the Premiership cow. Warnock must be sweating buckets, with last January fresh in his memory. How he must wish that Forest had come knocking in the summer, with new owners in place willing to show the colour of their money when the transfer window was actually open!

Saturday, 27 October 2012

One home point from six spells disaster for Warnock and Leeds

Oh dear. It seems that even if the FA don't act after the shameful scenes at Hillsborough, Allah is going to see that Leeds are punished for the actions of their moronic fans.

Back to back home games against teams in the bottom quarter of the table offered Leeds the opportunity to climb, at long last, into the top six. Instead the once mighty Whites have fallen further behind and now sit firmly in mid table. In fact, Birmingham are now only three points behind, having started the day fifth from bottom!

Where were Leeds when Warnock took over? Eighth from memory. Where are they now? Tenth, or eleventh if Hull win at Bristol City.

Now Cardiff are a full nine points ahead of Leeds, and that is a hell of a gap to make up even if Shatan does offer money to improve the squad after the long protracted take over. Forest have overtaken Leeds, Birmingham may now come on a charge and, with a new manager in position, Blackburn should be a force in this division.

It promises to be a long uphill struggle from here even if the oil money materialises. Leeds are, in fact, closer to the bottom three than they are to top spot! Old Big Gob had better brush up on his excuses before the Arabs arrive!

Wigan 2 West Ham 1 - Too litte, too late, no genuine number 2!

Well it was always going to happen. Play Tomkins at right back in the Prem and you are going to struggle. Stoke tried Huth there and paid the price. Centre backs are centre backs for a reason. They lack the acceleration to play on the flank of a defence. So it was open season for Wigan today every time they came down our right and we were all over the shop every time they did so.

Going forward we were little better mind you. Once again Benayoun failed to gamble and missed a goal scoring opportunity as a result, a Jarvis cross bypassing him for the sake of a full committed stretch. Carroll headed one wide and made a hash when trying to get on the end of a cross, missing the ball completely. He did set up Nolan well twice, but Captain Kev's shot was tame in the first half and comfortably blocked in the second.

So it came down to the last five minutes and the James Tomkins show. With Allardyce switching to 3-5 -2, Tomkins suddenly ended up in the opposition box when he should have been part of the back three and had a shot deflected onto the bar before meeting a McCartney cross, after a clever back heel by Nolan, and planting a header beautifully into the corner. But 93 minutes into the game, it was something a futile riposte after a mediocre team performance for much of the match.

Mind you, Allardyce's substitutions did not help. Withdrawing both Noble and Diame seemed perverse and left us with nobody in centre midfield. And when you need a goal to get back in the game, who is the last man you should turn to? Cole has now gone 16 Premiership games without a goal but Allardyce still told him to get stripped off. Even Carlton looked surprised!

Maiga came on at half time and was poor. Too often he looked to run at men rather than pass and two reasonable breaks were wasted as a result. And O'Neil is not going to instill fear into the hearts of opponents either is he?

All in all, a disappointing day at the office. But thankfully, most of the teams at the foot of the table drew or lost so, as we move into a nightmare run of games, we still have a buffer - and with Demel out for three weeks and only McCartney or O'Brien to play at left back, we are going to need it!

Player ratings: Jussi 7; Tomkins 5, Collins 6, Reid 6, McCartney 5; Noble 5, Diame 5; Nolan 6, Benayoun 4, Jarvis 6; Carroll 5 Subs Maiga 5, Cole 5, O'Brien 5

Shari’ah law will not impact on running of Leeds United

So Salem Patel has given an important assurance to Leeds fans. The director of the mysterious GFH Capital has said:

"We understand there is some concern related to how Leeds United would be run under our stewardship. It remains important to be clear that Shari’ah law will not hinder this transaction nor will it affect the future operations of the club."

Well that will be a relief to Leeds fans. Presumably, that will mean that they will still be able to get rat arsed drunk, fuelled by alcohol purchased from bars inside Elland Road. They will also be able to bet when in the stadium. And the gals will also be able to reveal roll upon roll of blubber and ton upon ton of cellulite when attending games rather than being required to dress in all white hajibs.

Mind you, I'm not sure how all of this will fit with Gulf Finance House's mission statement which talks about "investing in Islamic financial institutions and infrastructure projects". I suppose making money out of the selling of alcohol and gambling licenses might fall under the umbrella of Islamic diversification!

However, Neil Warnock may be disappointed by the news given his incessant "We was robbed" complaints. Now if referees were to have their right hands cut off...

By the way, Leeds fans excited by the takeover might like to read the article linked to below:

Nolan the perfect antidote for Tottenham's Scotty Parker

Kevin Nolan hopes Scott Parker will stick with the Hammers: Rob Newell/TGSPHOTO
Back in the day when Parker was named Player of the Year, I called the decision absurd. It was an award for huff and puff, a tribute to commitment, an acknowledgement that all we really value on the football field is endeavour and the wearing of one's heart on one's sleeve. Skill? Who needs it when a player can run through brick walls? Passing range? Why does it matter when a player works so hard to get the ball back after he has given it away? Goal scoring? That's for forwards! Assists? Blame the forwards for not scoring after Scotty's super human efforts!

Who did I say should have been player of the season that year? One Kevin Nolan. And why? Because his eleven goals and seven assists (against Parker's three and four) had kept Newcastle in the division whilst we had finished bottom.

And how did West Ham fans react? I was an idiot, a moron, a cnut, a numpty, a know nothing etcetera, etcetera. Scotty was a West Ham god, one of the best players ever to pull on Claret & Blue, a West Ham legend, the only reason why West Ham had ever secured a point under Avram and Zola. Without Scotty, West Ham would have done even worse than finishing bottom of the table! And his devotion to the club? Unquestionable!

Well, I wonder if a few people might now like to revise opinions? Nolan has already bagged 4 precious goals this season and, according to Allardyce, is the "most important signing he has ever made" because of what Nolan offers on and off the pitch in terms of ability and leadership.

True, Nolan doesn't run all over the pitch chasing the ball ignoring positional discipline in the process. True Nolan doesn't run around in circles when he has it. True Nolan doesn't look as if he is dying for the cause, a look of mangled desperation on his face for 90 minutes of a game. True Nolan looks more likely to become a wall rather than run through a wall. And true, Nolan has a nasty, cynical, winner's edge that honest Scotty never possessed...but tell me, what wins games, goals or huff and puff?

Whilst Parker sits on his arse at Spurs injured, Nolan has led by intelligent example, reading the game, making space for himself and others, eking out precious points for the team rather than chasing lost causes. And whilst Nolan has lead, Noble has blossomed in a way he never could alongside Parker, because Noble can play make, a role incorrectly assigned to Parker because of his status as Captain By Default Fantastic.

Allardyce calls Nolan his best ever signing. I wonder, would he also now accept that Parker was one of his best ever sales - in the sense that the legend of Scotty Parker was a ball and chain around the legs of the team. For the club to move on, Scotty had to go. And boy have we moved on since Captain Kev replaced Captain Elect Scotty!


Friday, 26 October 2012

Leeds Deal Nearly Done!

So it is close. Very close. Close. Close. Close. So close Master Bates can almost smell his money. GFC /GFH have the cash to complete the deal. They have already invested £2m in the club. It's going to happen! It's really going to happen!

But is it? It's been close for six weeks now and nothing has happened. And more to the point, if it does happen, what happens next?

There are still huge question marks over the buyers. If I supported Leeds I would be very, very worried indeed. If this bank is really committed to the club, why wasn't a deal done to help finance new signings in the window? Leeds are in touch with the teams at the top but have struggled to break into the top 6, never mind claim one of the promotion places.

Leeds fans will hope that they can "do a Reading" and put together a run of results that enables them to charge up the table. But new players take time to "bed in", and if a transfer war chest really is available to Warnock, January and February may be needed for familiarisation and precious points may be conceded. That's if a transfer war chest is available!

Bates' only priority is profit and he will not be arsed what happens to Leeds after he has gone. In fact, he would hate to see the club turn a healthy profit after his departure. There's still lots of questions that need answering with no answers forthcoming.

But the clock is ticking. The deal is close, close, close. If not today, then tomorrow - but that's Saturday! Then Sunday. No, Monday then. Or the day after. But it's close. Close. Close. Let's hope its not a pig's head on a stick, a Lord of the Flies!

The Return of Rio Ferdinand and Joe Cole

There's nothing to suggest that there's any truth in the rumours that we want Rio and JC back, but on the basis that there's no smoke without fire, they may just appear in Claret and Blue some time in January.

Personally, I believe that would be a grave error. We have enough experience in the team, what we need is pace on the flanks, and Rio is not going to offer that is he? I can see the argument that Rio paired with Winston Reid might offer the ideal combination of experience and pace down the centre of the defence, but that ignores the fitness problems that Ferdinand has experienced in recent years and the huge salary he would command. Why shell out £100,000 a week for somebody who is likely to spend game after game on the treatment table?

As for Joe Cole, his number is up. Was he ever as good as Redknapp claimed? If so, he has underachieved horribly. Or was he really an illusionist, a player possessing a bag full of tricks but who offered very little when it came to the real deal, competing at the highest level in football?

I suspect it was the latter. Redknapp talked him up too much and Cole believed his own hype. but honestly, try to remember "great moments" in a career stretching back 13 years now and you will probably come up with no more than ten.

Nostalgia is all very well providing it doesn't cost you anything. We have already brought Collins and Benayoun home and that's enough old boys for now. It is time to look to the future, not look back, and to find hungry young players with a future ahead of them, not fattened old cart horses looking for a pleasant pasture in which to herald in their retirement.

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Is Watford's Zola Cursed?

Poor GianFredo Zola, it seems that everything he touches turns to...well not gold! After a disastrous time as manager of West Ham, which saw a top ten team degenerate into a relegation haunted mess, the lovable Italian now appears to have trodden on the tail of a Gypsy's black cat, dropping a mirror in the process and knocking over a container of salt as he stumbled face forward beneath a ladder.

As if one erroneous red card were not enough, robbing his borrowed team of three points, Watford managed to go one worse at Cardiff, contriving to get two men sent off needlessly before conceding defeat to the joint league leaders courtesy of a penalty and an injury time winner.

Life's a bitch if you are a five feet nothing footballing genius trying to cut your teeth as a manager. But Zola won't give up. He will walk onto fist after fist and still get up smiling. But the worst sort of manager is an unlucky manager and poor GianFredo seems to be cursed.

Redknapp for Crystal Palace

It's the obvious marriage. A London club. A Team that plays in Claret and Blue. A team that like West Ham, Spurs and Arsenal, Redknapp always supported as a boy. A decent squad with a decent opportunity of winning promotion to the Prem...

...unless 'Arry is holding out for the QPR or Arsenal jobs of course! Well he supported both clubs as a boy.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Isn't a "Black Players Association" racist by definition?

So I'm trying to get my mind around this one. John Terry could have called Anton Ferdinand a "f*****g  c**t" and nobody would have batted an eyelid. That's just the industrial language of your average working class footballer apparently. The issue was that he called Anton Ferdinand a "f*****g black c**t".

Now I always maintained that the only word used by Terry that was not insulting was the word black. He could have called Anton a black genius and there would not have been an issue. And now, Jason Roberts and the Ferdinands are trying to prove my point. If Terry can't even use the word black, why in God's name is it acceptable for black players to establish themselves as a separate body, using that word black to do so?

Anton is, by many people's definition, a "f*****g c**t" - he is certainly defending like one this season. And now he, apparently, not only wants the word "black" associated with him but wants to be defined by it. So, and I am not calling him this, if he is a "f****g c**t" in the industrial language of footballers and he now identifies himself as a "black" footballer, wouldn't Terry be justified in calling him a "f*****g black c**t" by virtue of Ferdinand being a member of the "Black Players Association"?

Tell me, if John Terry applies to be a member of the "Black Footballers Association" would he be allowed to join? If not, isn't he being barred on the basis of colour? And if that is the case, isn't that racist by definition? And please, explain, if it is OK for Roberts and the Ferdinands to set up a Black Footballers Association, why couldn't Terry set up a White Footballers Association? And what would FIFA's reaction to that be?

It seems to me that some people want to have their cake and eat it!


Leicester and Cardiff edge further ahead as Leeds, Blackpool, Wolves, Palace and Huddersfield stumble

So Cardiff are joint top after edging out nine man Watford with a penalty and a last minute goal. That says it all about this year's Championship! Last season three teams stood out - and all three were promoted - but this year the whole division is made up of mediocrity. How else can you interpret the inability of any single side to stamp their mark on the division?

Leeds are now unbeaten in six, but draws are not much use when they only yield one point out of a possible three. The last two draws, against struggling sides, show that this is a team poorly equipped to sustain a challenge. With so many fancied sides drawing or losing last night, Warnock's team really should be occupying a top 6 place today, but it needed two Kenny saves to salvage a point against London minnows Charlton Athletic. Warnock's response? He's going to talk to the Chairman about bringing in new loan players; but is the Chairman interested any more? If he is selling up, why would he waste his money helping the new owners hit the Premiership jackpot? Surely GFH/GFC should now step up to the plate? If they are serious about buying the club and have the cash to fund loan deals of course.

Leicester look the most consistent team in the division at the moment but they are not steam rollering opposition in the way Southampton did last season. They edged out Brighton 1-0 last night. Big deal! West Ham put six past the Seagulls!

Miserablebrough have now climbed into third but they are decidedly average. Perhaps Wolves, Blackburn and Bolton will start a charge soon. A bottom three finish in the Prem should be enough to dominate this division! Look at how Southampton and Reading are struggling following promotion!

And there is the rub. What is the point of going up if you are going to come straight back down again? Whoever wins promotion this season will do so by default, and default will not be good enough in the Prem!

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Well Done Leeds United!

Of course, a cynic might suggest that Leeds are only making a stand against vile chants in an effort to head off any sanctions from the FA after the shocking events at Hillsborough, but let's not be churlish. I have called for West Ham to take more strenuous action against the morons on the terraces who chant disgusting things, and Leeds have now taken the initiative by calling on fans to turn their backs in disgust.

It's a start, but it's not enough. All clubs know where the trouble makers gather and it is time for much stronger enforcement of codes of decency. Cameras must be trained on these sections of the ground and microphones set up pitch side to catch exactly what is being "sung". It will then be easy to show images of those responsible and to issue lifelong bans from the ground whilst using local rags such as the YEP to publicly shame the scum who turn football into a war.

The cry will go up that it is just "banter" but that is nonsense. It is foul, it is abusive, it is disgusting and it is utterly unacceptable. Chants should be affirmative, positive, encouraging and directed at the players on the pitch - there is no place for the foul abuse that so often features in games.

Monday, 22 October 2012

Sitting in Seventh - Dare We Dream?

Now given the club anthem, dreaming is, of course, a dangerous thing. Leeds fans posting on here like to taunt about bubbles from the backside, and any presumptuous talk, I must confess, usually sets my tummy rumbling. We are West Ham United, after all, and West Ham United have never given the fans an easy ride.

But then again, we are no longer West Ham United, are we? Since Allardyce took charge, the mentality of the club has changed. Bugger pretty football, Allardyce's first priority is to avoid defeat and his second is to win. And thus far, the team are keeping pretty well to his script.

It's true that we haven't beaten "much" so far this season, but it's true too that this is a pretty average Premiership. Chelsea and Man City stand out, but other than that, there's nobody to be truly terrified of. In fact, the performance and result against Arsenal must be rated disappointing because Arsenal are no longer a major force, as the result at Norwich proved. I suspect that a fully fit and firing Carroll would have won that game for us before Walcott made it on to the pitch.

We are sitting on 14 points already, and we were desperately unlucky against Sunderland. Had we netted one of the six chances that went begging in that game, we would now be in the top four, and a fifth of the way through the season, that would be truly amazing.

And we have done all this whilst battling with injuries to key players. Demel was missing on Saturday and he has been our best player so far this season. O'Brien is out, and whilst no Ashley Cole or Glenn Johnson, he is probably our best full back outside of Demel. To win with Tomkins at right back is quite an achievement! Carroll has been out too, and has not yet achieved full sharpness. Diarra hasn't kicked a ball yet. Collison has been injured too. Cole is apparently only ever going to be 90% fit. And Maiga is learning about the British game and will get better the more game time he gets,

The Independent carries an article today contrasting the recruitment policy of Allardyce and Adkins and the summer recruitment strategy was nothing short of stunning. Even without Carroll's wages, we spent over £16m in the summer, and Allardyce invested it very wisely indeed. Diame paired with Noble allows Nolan to play higher than he did last season in the Championship, Jarvis offers pace and flair on the flanks, Carroll may not be everybody's cup of tea but he is one of the best English strikers currently playing the game and has a brilliantly understanding with Nolan, Collins has made mistakes but has oodles of experience and has the heart of a lion, Jussi is at least as good as Green, Maiga may yet prove to be an astute signing, Benayoun will win us games with his flair and if Diarra gets fits. he may not yet be a pup.

And best of all, Allardyce is getting the best out of Noble, who I still maintain will make the England squad before the season ends.

Is there a storm cloud on the horizon? Of course. The fixtures will get harder and we have yet to see how the team responds when results go against them, but the full back positions apart, we look well equipped to cope with all but the best five or six teams in this division - home or away.

So should targets now be revised? I found myself wanting QPR and Everton to draw, suddenly wanting to keep a club above us in range rather than worrying absolutely about a relegation probable closing the gap on us. That is quite a sea change for me!

Is a top ten finish beyond us? No, although we need to sign two full backs in the January window to achieve it. Can we make it into the top six? Unlikely but never say never. Top four? Of course not, but it is fun to be within touching distance a fifth of the way through the season.

And relegation? It is still possible. Remember Blackpool. Remember Birmingham. There's always one team that starts well and then stumbles. This is no time to get cocky, but my money would be on Swansea collapsing rather than ourselves.

Time will tell. Dare we dream? Let's wait until after the Wigan game shall we?

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Another Great Day For West Ham As QPR And Sunderland Draw

Brilliant - two perfect results for West Ham which leave us in seventh and keep both QPR and Sunderland well adrift of us and low on confidence.

Watched the QPR game and boy did referee Moss make some mistakes. Both sides were denied nailed on penalties and the Pineear sending off was a disgrace. But even playing against 10 men, QPR weren't good enough to win.

So sad for Dyer, Green,  Zamora, Anton and Fernandes. Not!

Dave Jones' Comments After Leeds Game Are Spot On

Here's what the Sheffield Wednesday manager said:

“Everyone is talking about one idiot. It isn’t one idiot. They were ripping out seats, throwing bottles and when the lad attached Chris Kirkland he ran back into the crowd and they – the fans - hid him," Jones told the Sports Bar.

“Don’t think it was just one person. It wasn’t one supporter chanting; it wasn’t just one supporter ripping out one seat, it was 30 or 40.

“I call them animals and that’s what they are. They shouldn’t be allowed to go to a football match, that’s how strongly I feel about it.
 “It’s not water of a ducks back when my family are in the crowd and my 11-year-old Grandson is hearing it.
They shouldn’t be allowed to go to a football match, that’s how strongly I feel about it.— Dave Jones

“For someone to attack someone on the pitch it doesn’t matter who it is, I thought those days had gone.

“I feel sorry for the police to be honest, when you have mindless idiots. It was one supporter who went on the pitch, but what about the rest that went to protect and hide him.”

The Wednesday boss was equally unhappy with Leeds manager Neil Warnock, who encouraged his players to applaud the away fans and said that Kirkland ‘went down like a ton of bricks'

Now that isn't labelling all Leeds fans animals, he is talking about 30 or 40. Now presumably these "fans" bought their tickets through Leeds United Football Club. In which case, Leeds have some questions to answer, especially in the light of Warnock's decision to applaud the away support. With the help of TV images, it must surely be easy to identify every one of those involved, based on the club's record of who purchased tickets. Sheffield Wednesday will also be able to identify which seats were torn off and thrown onto the pitch.

Leeds should now publicly shame those involved and must make greater efforts to ensure this scum never ever get into a football stadium again. Meanwhile, Warnock must be charged with bringing the game into disrepute and for encouraging hooliganism - his post match comments were inappropriate and the applauding of that section of the ground was little short of disgraceful. He might like to offer a personal apology to the grandson of Dave Jones. How appalling that an 11 year old boy was forced to witness that. And still I have Leeds 'fans' coming on here posting obscene comments about Jones. Just one moron? Warnock should take over moderating this site, then he will find out how many morons there are amongst the fan base of Leeds UNITED football club -


Saturday, 20 October 2012

West Ham 4 Southampton 1 - Noble Pokes Critics In Eye!

Mark Noble celebrates
OK, so the result apparently flattered us a little, and Southampton were very poor, but who cares? This was another three crucial points, and the boost to our goal difference is very welcome too. Fourteen points banked already, and we are still in October! And level on points with fourth place Everton also makes for happy reading - although, sensibly, all West Ham fans should pray for an Everton victory over QPR!

We should not get carried away just yet, however. The fixtures have been kind to us so far and, in truth, we are 4 points behind par at the moment after the defeats against Swansea and Arsenal and the home draw against a very average Sunderland team. But even the Manchester clubs drop points when they are expected to win or draw, so to complain about our return thus far would be churlish in the extreme.

Bigger challenges lay ahead, but 14 points from 8 games is an excellent return, irrespective of the teams played. At this rate, Southampton will struggle to reach 14 by Christmas. And now Adkins has questions to answer after the perverse decision to start Rodrigues ahead of Lambert. In the summer I said the former Burnley man was an absurd  £7.5m gamble and so it is proving.

Hideous Details Emerging On Night of Shame for Leeds United

It seems I may have jumped in too early when responding to the events at Hillsborough last night. I only saw limited coverage on the television and did not understand the full background to events.

If reports now appearing on the net are true, we are not talking about the actions of one moron as I thought. Time and again, I have been subjected to foul "paedo" jibes on here from idiots who think that child abuse is a joking matter, and it seems the same barbs were being directed at Dave Jones last night, whilst some idiotic Leeds fans were actively associating the club with Jimmy Savile and chanting support for a man who, although not proved guilty, certainly does not have the whiff of innocence about him.

In addition, seats were apparently torn up and hurled onto the pitch whilst Kirkland was being treated.

Now again, I would not use any of this to condemn the club. After the infamous League Cup game with Millwall, I called upon West Ham to resign our place from the competition. That seemed the only way of truly showing the club's disgust at the appalling behaviour of a sizable section of the crowd. Leeds cannot resign from the Championship - that would be an absurd suggestion - and any call for a points deduction should be resisted in my opinion.

However, the comments and actions of Neil Warnock after the game do need investigation and should, in my opinion, trigger action if the reports are true. Old Big Gob doesn't seem to get it. Speaking about Dave Jones' reaction, he sounds like a five year old when he says, "he doesn't seem to have heard the things the Wednesday fans were singing about me".

Who cares? That does not excuse the abuse directed at Dave Jones does it? NOTHING excuses false charges of paedophilia against a father and husband and Jones is right, in my opinion, to call the morons chanting this "vile animals". In fact, the game should have been stopped and the Leeds section of the ground cleared in response, especially in the light of the Savile revelations because statistically, there is a strong probability that somebody in the stadium would have suffered abuse. Should a victim of such a foul crime be exposed to mocking chants, turning a hideous personal trauma into playground teasing? I don't think so. Just as racist chants are unacceptable, so this sort of abuse should be absolutely anathema.

Then there is the problem with Warnock clapping the away fans and talking about the action of one moron. It was that one moron who chanted the foul abuse at Jones was it? It was one foul moron who sang support for Jimmy Savile was it? It was one foul moron who regenerated several times in the space of a couple of minutes and invaded the pitch was it? It was one foul moron who cheered himself and hid himself after the assault on Kirkland was it? And it was one foul moron who tore up the seats and hurled them onto the pitch was it?

This is not to say Wednesday fans are blameless. Their taunts about the death of Leeds fans in Turkey were equally disgraceful. But when is the game going to get a grip of this? There were children in the stadium witnessing this disgraceful behaviour of adults. What about our duty of care to them?

Forget individual action against Leeds, it is not the club's fault. But I would like to see action taken on foul abuse by sections of the crowd. If heard, that section of the ground should be cleared before the game proceeds. And until it is cleared, the players should leave the pitch, with a punishment of a 10 point deduction if there is any delay in the fans leaving the stadium. Only then will we end this terrible blight on the game.

And Warnock should also be brought to book for applauding the crowd after the game. That was stupid, reckless and irresponsible. He should have been unequivocal in condemning the chants about Jones, the support for Savile, the assault, the chair throwing and the protection afforded to the thug by other sections of the crowd.

Another big question now is how GFH /GFC will react to this night of shame. What sort of bank would want to be associated with those scenes and with a manager who seeks to make excuses rather than offering an outright condemnation?

Friday, 19 October 2012

Stand by for hysterical over reaction to one Leeds thug.

Here we go then. Warnock has already blown his top, sensibly trying to distance the club from the actions of one buffoon, but there's bound to be a queue of Mr Indignants all desperate to parade his disgust and all over reacting. Yes the idiot should be found and punished. Yes he should never be allowed into a football stadium ever again. And yes the scum who shielded him and cheered his actions have embarrassed Leeds United Football Club horribly, but that's it.

Any call for points deductions or draconian fines for the club should be dismissed. Leeds United did not assault Kirkland, one moron did. Find that moron and punish him. Identify those who shielded him and cheered him, and ban them from football stadiums for the rest of their lives too. But leave the club alone.

I have no love for Leeds United FC but I do believe in justice.

That said, Warnock was wrong to complain that Kirkland went down "like a ton of bricks" - that is an inappropriate complaint in the circumstances - and to say "our crowd were fantastic but we’ve got one moron and I can’t tolerate that". I saw lots of morons cheering that one moron and accepting him back into the "fold" after the assault. A "fantastic" crowd would have handed this thug over to the police, not protected him and cheered him surely?

The Sale of Maynard to Cardiff Bucks West Ham Trend!

Dear God, for once the gods have looked kindly on West Ham! How many times have we splashed the cash on a player, only for him to arrive as damaged goods or break down almost as soon as he has joined us?

McBenni and Dyer are two glaring examples, of course. God only knows what they cost us in combined transfer fees and salary outlay, but there wouldn't be much change out of £20m - for a handful of appearances, literally.

Then there's Freddie Allergic to Cheese Ljungberg of course - we paid him £4m just to buy out his bloody contract!

Dean Ashton may have been finally crocked by Wright-Phillips but he arrived wrapped in more bandages than an Egyptian mummy fresh from a motorway pile up. The big clubs ignored him because there were rumours about his fitness apparently.

And we shouldn't forget Quashie and Davenport, although their injuries were blessings in disguise because it meant we couldn't pick them! Then Upson, who was crocked as soon as he joined us, causing him to miss the Great Escape run in, having been purchased specifically to help us avoid the drop!

Rumour has it that a guy called Diarra is on our books at the moment, though you wouldn't know it as he has stepped into Dyer's non playing boots since his transfer. Demel had most of last season off too, claiming a wage whilst sitting on his not inconsiderable arse.

Tarrico lasted just minutes before his career came to a crashing halt after donning the claret and blue, and Tristan spent two thirds of a season building up his fitness, playing with all the speed and mobility of a lamp post when he eventually made it on to the field.

Then there was Boogers, a mental case after just four appearances as a sub! And Beauchamp who was homesick because he was more than an hour's drive from Oxford! McAvennie's second stint was cut short by a broken leg and the same happened to Hutchison.

And so it goes on. But fortunately, we shipped out Maynard just in time. Out for the season just a few games into his Cardiff career - maybe our luck has changed!

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Cracks Appearing In Leeds Take Over Bid

Very interesting. Speculation continues to mount about the financial viability of the prospective buyers of Leeds United. Until recently, the deal was hidden beneath such a cloak of secrecy that many wrongly believed - and claimed on here - that Gulf Finance House ne Gulf Finance Capital were simply fronting the deal; now we know that GFH / GFC are the full shebang and the deal lives or dies on the ability of the dubious Islamic bank to finance the purchase.

Well now  Sa'Pinto, French & Weir of REUTERS have put the cat amongst the ibises by declaring that GFH/GFC "appears to have little financial fire power to complete the deal". Ouch! Six months down the line, this is not what Leeds fans want to hear!

Apparently, the company has"previously taken big fees from projects that rarely see completion" . Double ouch! Maybe that's why the take over is dragging on so long.

The report adds the GFH group "had more than a quarter of a billion dollars of accumulated losses and less than $6M in cash at the end of June." Bloody hell! No wonder the company is seeking cheap publicity!

Apparently, 2011 produced a profit of less than half a million dollars - and they want to buy Leeds and take on Premiership wage bills?

It's all beginning to sound like samboosa in the sky to me. But I'm sure Leeds fans will tell me the take over will definitely happen tomorrow.

Or the day after tomorrow

or the next tomorrow

or the tomorrow after that

or tomorrow's tomorrow's tomorrow's tomorrow's tomorrow



£200m Public Subsidy for West Ham Leeds To Massive Controversy

So it is looking increasingly likely that the public purse will be used to turn West Ham United into a footballing super power. The jellied eels munching East End barrow boys, it seems, will be packing up their caravans, towing them up the road to Stratford and setting up home in an Olympic Stadium remodelled to fit the club's needs, complete with state of the art retractable seating to ensure the stadium creates the right sight lines and atmosphere for a future Champions League club.

Bloody hell, even Del Boy wouldn't have dreamt up this wheeze. In 2015, we really could be millyonaires, playing in front of 60,000 spectators, with special concessions for the young to ensure a future generation of London based, West Ham supporters. And remarkably, the taxpayer, be he a Tottenham, Arsenal, Chelsea, Millwall or even Leeds fan, will fund it!

How galling must that be if you support another club? How many whippets will be kicked by guys in flat caps when this is officially announced? How many Oy Veys will be uttered on the way back from the synagogues of Tottenham? How many wives will be punched in Millwall? How many Chelsea fans will melt in indignation? How many Gunners will go pop at the prospect?

It is, of course, outrageous, but it looks like it is going to happen regardless. Boris wants it to happen and what Boris wants, Boris gets. Newham Council are committing £40m to the project despite being one of the poorest boroughs in the country, funding a privately owned football club out of the public purse, having led objections to Tottenham moving to the stadium.

Whilst poor old Leeds United is negotiating to sell its soul to Shatan, the Dildo Brothers look like they have pulled off the biggest coup since Bates sold Chelsea to Abromovich. Happy days! Unless you are a tax payer who does not support West Ham!

Monday, 15 October 2012

The Day When Leeds United Triggered England World Cup Exit

October 17, 1973. Brian Clough told Brian Moore that Tomaszewski  was a clown and Ramsey stupidly selected Hunter ahead of the great Bobby Moore for the must win World Cup Wembley qualifier against Poland - and the rest is history.

Clarke, despite scoring from the spot, missed a hatful of chances and Hunter stood on the ball on the touchline, enabling Lato to break free, pass to Domarski and...

It was a horror night for England but if you want a trip down memory lane...


Very spooky how close the dates of the two games are. Being superstitious, I would never have agreed to a fixture against Poland that has such an obvious echo back to one of the most famous nights in Polish football history. I bet the Poles are exploiting it to the full!

Redknapp of the Republic?

It's a delicious idea, 'Arry rejected by England rolls up in the Republic of Ireland and takes control of Trappatoni's misfits. I can't see it happening personally, unless 'Arry can unearth Irish grandparents for a whole host of Croats, Africans and Romanian footballing gypsies.

Mind you, 'Arry's first press conference would be fun... "I've always been a supporter of Sinn Fein and..."


Sunday, 14 October 2012

Zola Waiting For Godot In Watford

So, Gino Pozzo has told Watford fans to relax and enjoy the ride. The Pozzos have a vision, a project, and soon Watford will only sell their young players to the likes of Barcelona and Real Madrid - just like Udinese.

As Pozzo talks about developing new talent and aiming for the top half of the Prem - comparing Watford to Udinese - everything sounds wonderful. Watford fans desperate for good news will be lapping this up. Just like we lapped up the "project" when it was explained to us so enthusiastically at Upton Park.

The trouble is, Pozzo has downgraded the Watford Academy - hardly a commitment to developing local young talent - and will not put a time frame on the project. Watford fans must stop worrying and trust to the fact that Godot will arrive some day. But when, when, when?

Well as Pozzo says in Beckett's play, "Have you not done tormenting me with your accursed time! It's abominable! When! When! One day, is that not enough for you, one day he went dumb, one day I went blind, one day we'll go deaf, one day we were born, one day we shall die, the same day, the same second, is that not enough for you? (Calmer.) They give birth astride of a grave, the light gleams an instant, then it's night once more. (He jerks the rope.) On!"


Jimmy Savile & The Unfair Leeds Connection

Some rather distasteful individuals have posted comments on here trying to besmirch the City of Leeds and Leeds United Football Club on the basis that Savile was born in Leeds. One idiot who purports to support the club has even tried to goad me into penning an article designed to stir up hatred between our clubs. How sad.

The dreadful truth is that Savile actively supported Leeds General Infirmary so residents of the City may well be amongst his victims - and despite what some idiots who make obscene paedo jibes through the comments section on here seem to believe, child abuse and rape are not laughing matters.

The story really is very sad. I never liked Savile, I always considered him creepy, but until this story broke, I had to respect him. His efforts on behalf of Stoke Mandeville Hospital (where my son was born) were monumental and his work on behalf of charity in general must command admiration, even now.

How do you weigh in the scales a life like Savile's? He came from nowhere and worked his way to the top, despite suffering a spinal injury when working as a Bevin boy. He was a pioneer in his chosen field and contributed hugely through his charity work. We have no idea what may have happened to corrupt his mind sexually, nor do we know the personal angst he may have felt. This is not to excuse his behaviour - it is utterly inexcusable - but if you were to weigh those whose lives he helped against those whose lives he damaged, the scales may tip in his favour.

The really sinister dimension of this story is the way he was protected by institutions with a duty of care. Critics mock police checks for people working with children, but one Savile case shows why they are absolutely necessary. However, I am not sure what will now be gained by opening this wound any further. What he did was awful, but he is dead, gone, no more. It really is time to move on, ensuring that there can be no repeat but not turning the past into a media circus and a compensation cow. How many opportunists are now preparing false claims because Savile visited them in a hospital I wonder? And where is the burden of proof?

Anyway, there will be no Savile jibes from me and certainly no attempt to tarnish the City nor its football club because of his abusive actions. It is a sad final chapter to what was previously a weirdly epic story and the big questions for me are the extent to which employees were pressurised by senior managers not to spill the beans and why, exactly, these managers felt to need to cover up Savile's actions.

Saturday, 13 October 2012

Boa Morte's Usual return on Chesterfield Debut

One game, one defeat. One game, no goals. Nothing changes for the six million pound man does it? The old division four? No difference from the Prem it seems for the Portuguese plonker -except the wages of course!

Friday, 12 October 2012

From Cornwall to Leeds, From Southend to Wrexham, the same question...

So it was a moral victory for San Marino because they only lost 5-0 at Wembley. I ask you, you ask me, I ask the next man, the whole nation asks the guy next to him, what is the bloody point? Rooney has just said it isn't easy. Who cares? What the fcuk are San Marino doing in the competition in the first place? It is absurd. Somebody should be cited under the Trades Descriptions Act for terming this an international.

By the way, Romania won a proper international in Turkey 1-0!

Thursday, 11 October 2012

All the clarity of frosted glass as Leeds and GFH make joint statement

Interesting. Last week Master Bates told us that he would like to tell the fans more about the deal with GFH Capital but couldn't because he was bound by a confidentiality agreement; now GFH Capital Chief Executive David Haigh has claimed, "The importance for us to talk to the numerous fans and supporter groups of Leeds United on the acquisition of the club can not be underestimated, but at this time, we have to respect the confidentialities of a deal of this nature."

So let's just translate that shall we? Bates wants to be open with the fans but can't be because of a confidentiality agreement signed with GFH Capital; and Haigh wants to be open with the fans but can't be because of a confidentiality agreement signed with Bates. Hmmmm.

Here's an interesting thought. Given both parties want to talk to the fans and both parties feel constrained by the confidentiality agreement, why don't they both agree to tear it up?

And of course they would do if this was anything close to a done deal. But somebody is playing silly buggers. Is it Bates, holding out for more than GFH Capital want to pay? I doubt it. He would then be inviting rival bidders to join the fray.

So is it GFH Capital? They are feeding off of free publicity at the moment and rumours continue to circulate regarding their financial well being. In fact, the Yorkshire Evening Post claim "Gulf Finance House held less than £4m in cash in June this year, £800m less than at the end of 2008." That seems a pretty dangerous rumour to peddle if there is no truth in it. If I was the CEO of GFH Capital, I would be threatening legal action if a newspaper was unfairly slurring the reputation of my company. After all, a bank without reserves is like harem without women: fcuking useless!

So what is going on? Haigh insists he has spoken to nobody - and most definitely not LUST - and is even denying quotations attributed to him. He has not claimed the deal could be done in three weeks apparently. Nor did he compare the club to Pamela Anderson.

Meanwhile another GFH Capital talking head, Salem Patel has said that both sides are looking to reach "as swift a conclusion to this deal as is possible". Really? Then sign the bloody contract and show Bates the exit! If a buyer wants to buy, a seller wants to sell and the deal has been agreed, there's no reason for a delay is there? Unless the buyer doesn't have the funds to complete the deal, of course. Then the delays could stretch on for ever.

Incredibly, in the light of the lack of substance in the so called "joint statement", United chief-executive officer Shaun Harvey said: “As with all speculation, not all of it is correct. And we are pleased that both are able to clarify the situation.” That is clarify as in stirring up the muddied waters or steaming up a frosted glass window presumably?

Five months in and still nobody has any idea what is really going on!

Boa's Back!

The curators of Chesterfield Cathedral must be panicking, wondering how to protect the famous crooked spire once Boa has pulled on his shooting boots again!

Still, I can see a new marketing campaign on the horizon! "Bend It Like Boa!"

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

After Watford and Nottingham Forest, Will Birmingham Now Beat Leeds In The Take Over Race?

How long has this Leeds take over been dragging on for now? Bates has blamed London lawyers, but that sounds far too convenient. We can always moan about solicitors, and the fact that they are Southern Softies just makes the excuse all the more palatable for Leeds fans anxious for the club's soul to be sold to Shatan. The small print must be bloody small for it to take so long to read. Jarndyce versus Jarndyce was a less protracted affair!

News of the Forest take over broke at the same time as Leeds announced a confidentiality agreement and Birnam Wood has since walked on Dunsinane, whilst tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow the Leeds deal creeps in its petty pace till the last syllable of  all recorded time. Statements issued by the club are full of sound and fury but, to date, still have signified nothing of substance.

Watford's Godfather style takeover has been completed too. Men arrived with violin cases in the middle of the night, there was a flash of light in the darkness of the Watford corridors and suddenly Consiglieri Duxbury, Godfather Nani and GianFredo Zola were unveiled. Meanwhile at Leeds, Old Mother Warnock continued to complain that his cupboard was bare.

And now Birmingham City have announced that they are in take over talks themselves. Who would bet on the ink being dry on the Leeds deal first given all the delays to date? Yesterday, Leeds were compared to Pamela Anderson. Perhaps that was wishful thinking. Maybe, just maybe, the prospective owners are not waving but drowning, desperately hoping for a financial lifeguard to come to their rescue and keep the deal afloat?

It's all happening in the Championship; it's just not happening at Leeds!

The UnRaveling of Morrison's Loan Deal to Birmingham

Morrison insists it is not true and, at the time of writing, there has been no confirmation from either club, but usually there is no smoke without fire and, let's face it, Ravel has previous!

We paid £1.3m for this wild card and, as things stand, it is looking very bad business indeed. After just one outing as a sub, he was rapidly shipped off to Birmingham where he has played just one game - despite the woeful start they have had to the season - and word on the ground is that they want rid. Desperately want rid.

There's all this talk about how talented the boy is but you can have all the talent in the world and if the attitude is wrong, you will get nowhere. If these rumours are true and Morrison has upset the apple cart in Birmingham too, then he may have pressed the self destruct button once too often. Allardyce is not going to welcome him back with open arms is he? He crucified the youngsters who tried against Wigan; how will he man manage an outright delinquent?

Of course, we are dealing with speculation at the moment and it seems as if Morrison can only return if we agree to the termination of the loan deal. Who knows, with Birmingham struggling, Morrison may yet outlast Clark and actually find a manager he can get on with. Miracles do happen apparently.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Have the potential new Leeds owners fired their first shot at Warnock and Bates?

So, David Haigh, has compared Leeds to Pamela Anderson. What did he have in mind I wonder?

Well, like Pamela, Leeds have certainly seen better days and are no longer prime box office. And, I suppose, in Warnock and Bates they have two proper tits at the top. And maybe the new owners have a certain illicit movie in mind and are turned on by the idea of the money shot. Or maybe they are eyeing up Leeds' prime assets and thinking they can milk the club for all its worth. Or maybe their first signing will be a shagged out Brazilian. Or perhaps the Hoff will be brought in to play up top. 

Not being a Pamela expert - I have never watched Baywatch nor any of her movies - I'm struggling to come up with any other links, but I would say that it is a pretty tasteless comparison to make. Already GFH have betrayed a total lack of class.

Not a promising start. But what am I saying? The takeover is still at least three weeks away!


Saturday, 6 October 2012

Leeds On A Charge Into Seventh Place

Leeds United fans are in seventh heaven tonight as the mighty Whites climbed to one place below the play off places. With Blackburn and Blackpool both losing, the epic victory over Barnsley, courtesy of a highly controversial penalty, was almost enough to see Leeds into the consolation places of the playoffs - almost but not quite.
Agonisingly for Leeds, newly promoted Yorkshire neighbours Huddersfield occupy sixth spot after a superb victory at St Andrews. The club that has lived in the shadow of Leeds for so many years, and who lost top scorer Jordan Rhodes in the last window to Blackburn, have somehow contrived to accumulate the same number of points as their famous neighbours and have a better goal difference.
Meanwhile, the top three slots are now occupied by Cardiff, Leicester and Wolves, all of whom picked up more impressive victories than Leeds today. It is rotten luck on Leeds that even when they fluke a victory, they still find themselves below the crucial play off line.
Still, Brighton won't finish in the top six and nor will Huddersfield. But Birmingham haven't got into their stride yet and will come with a charge, and Blackburn will also climb again once a manager is appointed. Blackpool will finish in the top six and Forest got a good victory today.
But never mind all that! Leeds beat the mighty Barnsley today by a penalty goal to nil. That's the same Barnsley that West Ham beat 4-0 on the sixth of April en route to a third place finish. The bars are buzzing in Leeds tonight, for these are heady days indeed. Seventh in the Championship! Let's celebrate!

West Ham 1 Arsenal 3 - Ougunned, Outclassed, Outflanked

On 58 minutes I turned to my wife (pictured above) in Oscar's bar in Lipscan, Bucharest and said, "It's going to be a long 30 minutes!" I had spent the first half wondering if Walcott was injured. When he came on, with McCartney at left back, there was only ever going to be one winner.
All summer I warned, either we buy two full backs or we are in trouble, but amazingly the obvious deficiency in the squad and team was not addressed. So today, McCartney, a carthorse in the Championship, was our only option at left back, and when Demel was injured - and his fitness record aint great is it? - Tomkins came on to play at right back. Game over!
To be fair to McCartney, only one goal came from Arsenal's right and Collins and Jussi have to share the blame. True Linda was trailing in Walcott's wake, but that was inevitable. Collins, however, was yet again at fault, playing the England man onside by dropping a yard deeper than the rest of the backline, and Jussi's positioning was wrong: where Green stood on his near post in the play off final and invited a shot across him into a gaping net, Jussi allowed far too much space at the neat post and paid the price. Credit to Walcott, he took the goal well, but Jussi made it unnecessarily easy for him.
That was as good as curtains, but Allardyce ensured an Arsenal victory when he then withdrew Diame and sent on Cole. The thinking exactly? We needed to score to save the game so why on earth, based on current form, would you send on Carlton? Meanwhile, the removal of Diame threw open the door for wave after wave of Arsenal attacks. It was a dumb decision and Arsenal rammed home a third almost immediately to prove the point.
Any pluses? Diame's goal was sublime. Noble's reverse ball into Vaz Te was as good and but for a professional block before the collision with the keeper would have almost certainly resulted in a goal. Noble knockers might also like to note that two Arsenal players were booked for fouls on him and Carroll should have scored from a Noble corner.
Diame made a mistake for Arsenal's equaliser but, that apart was very good. He is a huge presence in midfield. And Nolan could, and should, have scored twice.
We lost and Arsenal deserved to win. But so what? Arsenal will finish in the top four and will win many more games than they lose. We move on. The big worry centres on Demel. If he is out for a run of games, we will struggle.
Player ratings: Jussi 5; Demel 7, Collins 5, Reid 6, McCartney 5; Noble 6 Diame 8; Jarvis 5, Nolan 6, Vaz Te 4; Carroll 6 Subs: Taylor 6, Cole 4, Tomkins 5

Will Allardyce Work It Up Wenger Again?

Under Zola and Grant, we would have gone in to today's game with minimal expectation. Arsenal were so superior to us, it couldn't be true. But Arsenal were always far superior to Bolton on paper and it didn't seem to make a lot of difference. Allardyce simply sent his team out to bully Arsenal out of their stride.

Eight bookings on Monday night might suggest that Doctor Evil was using the game as a warm up, but that would be to misinterpret events. Yes we pressed, and pressed high, but we were not dirty at any point and the McCartney booking apart, Twattenbung was simply chucking around yellows to make himself look important. Today may be different.

The first question centres on team selection. Will Allardyce stay on the offensive and stick with Jarvis and Vaz Te in a 4-3-3, or will Taylor be brought back to screen whoever plays at left back? I warned before the season kicked off that we desperately needed a new left back but, for some reason, the Achilles heel was ignored. If Wenger decides to probe down our left, then it could turn into a rout.

But Wenger is scared of Allardyce. He is the football boff face to face with the playground thug. He found it hard enough when Pardew got in his face, and Allardyce has been in his mind for a decade now, knocking Arsenal out of their stride, using a bludgeoning cudgel to knock all the science out of the beautiful game. Wenger enters the game nursing a long standing headache and Carroll, Nolan and Diame will be primed to get under the Arsenal players' skins. It's unlikely to be pretty, but it could be fun!

Friday, 5 October 2012

Redknapp Issues Come & Get Me Call To QPR

You can't stop an old dog from playing old tricks. With Mark Hughes under increasing pressure at QPR, Redknapp has thrown his hat into the ring by claiming he is not in the frame for the job. Of course he isn't!

According to 'Arry, Hughes is a "top manager" and so far he has heard "nothing from anybody". So far!

He isn't going to Leicester and isn't going to Ipswich either. He wants a job in the Prem. Nor is he heading abroad, despite lots of offers. He is happy living where he lives, within commuting distance of West London.

The most telling thing Redknapp said on the subject? "I'll just wait and see what comes up". I bet he will be cheering on West Brom this weekend! The international break is always a good time for interviewing a new manager!

Thursday, 4 October 2012

If you play for QPR, the grass is Greener even in the SPL!

Well that has to be the ultimate poke in the eye! Poor Rob Green has slipped so far down the list of England keepers that Woy has selected a stopper playing in SCOTLAND ahead of him!

That's what you get for joining QPR. Green was a regular England squad member when playing in the Championship for West Ham, but joining a no mark outfit like QPR has seemingly buggered his chances for ever.

Hodgson has apparently told tube twavellers, "Wob's career isn't necessawily over but if all thwee keepers were to be injured this weekend, I would pwobably call up Wio Ferdinand ahead of him"!

Bates Reportedly Planning To Cut And Run From Leeds

Ooops, it is all coming out now. When I posted suggesting that the take over at Leeds might turn in to a nightmare, Leeds fans fell over themselves in a rush to call me an idiot. I knew nothing apparently, GFH were simply fronting the deal, the real buyers were filthy rich individuals happy to pump oil money into the club. Not so it seems. GFH are the buyers.

Now, according to the Yorkshire Evening Post, Bates is planning to sell his interest in the club and disappear into the sunset - or into his grave if Leeds' fans wishes came true. Good riddance the flat capped whippet owners will say, but they are missing the point. If Bates is planning to go, then Leeds fans should start to worry with a capital W. The guy is a wily old bastard when it comes to money and he wouldn't be walking away from a great investment - unless he is selling the club at way over the odds or he believes that things are going to go tits up after the sale.

And there is the rub. Look closely at GFH and you have to gasp - not in awe but in trepidation. If this outfit was planning to buy West Ham, I would be organising a campaign to block the sale, not rolling out the red carpet! And this is nothing to do with racism - although I must confess that I would object to being owned by a company that in its literature makes such a deal out of investing in Islamic companies and culture because that is, to me, racist in itself: we are supposed to look beyond race, culture and creed, but GFH put Islam at the centre of their mission statement to the exclusion of other religions. I object to Christian Aid as a Charity because of the use of a religion in its title and I would certainly not give my custom to a company that aligned itself with the Christian faith to the exclusion of Islam, Judaism, Hinduism etcetera.

But that is just the top of the boil. The real puss is what lies beneath, a septic mess of debt that, if reports are correct, seems to be eating Leeds' potential new owners from the inside out. I quote from the Yorkshire Evening Post here:

"Since then, Gulf Finance House, which made losses in excess of £200million in both 2009 and 2010 but is in profit for the past 18 months, has announced a deal to restructure part of its debt and drawn up a plan to restructure more. GFH said recently that it now expects “sustainable profitability in the long term.”

"Others are more doubtful. The YEP has seen a document produced this week by a global market investment firm, in which GFH is discussed as a possible investment opportunity. Independent of KPMG’s analysis, the firm declares itself “wary of GFH’s ability to carry on as a going concern given its continued inability to produce cash from its core operations.” The document also says that “we believe GFH is only staying afloat because of its successful debt restructurings and the continued financial support of its shareholders.”

Tell me, if Master Bates anticipated Leeds making it to the promised land of the Prem, why would he sell out just before the club hits the jackpot? But if he can get top dollar and walk away risk free from a bunch of chancers who may be looking for cheap publicity by buying a big name football club, then why wouldn't he do it? Leeds fans claim he hates the club and its fans so cashing in a profit and leaving the club to go to Hell might have a certain appeal. Revenge is sweet, especially when you sign the contract with a pen donated by LUST!

Now this is all speculation and may be unfair. GFH may be great news for Leeds. But there are lots of questions still to be answered and those who are gloating are being more than a tad presumptuous from what I can see.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Coyle Blames Fatty Dowd For Bolton's Draw With Leeds

Good on Warnock, he took the Bolton equaliser on the chin and blamed himself for not warning Austin what to expect from Kevin Davies. Mind you, given Premiership football is beamed around the world and Davies has been around longer than Wayne Rooney's tarts, the Jamaican must have been in some sort of bubble not to know about the belligerent Bolton bastard. A lame excuse perhaps?

Meanwhile Coyle is convinced that Fatty Dowd got two penalty decisions wrong, awarding one incorrectly to Leeds and failing to give Bolton a nailed on one. I haven't seen them, but with Warnock being strangely generous and admitting to cocking up himself, my money is on his opposite number being right!

That said, Leeds did bloody well to come back from a goal behind to secure a point at Bolton - something we West Ham fans can only dream of! Fortunately, QPR survived at the expense of Bolton last season because the three points we secured at Loftus Road would never have been secured at Bolton!

Unfortunately for Leeds, recent improved results have not yet edged them into a play off place, never mind an automatic promotion spot. Cardiff and Leicester are suddenly looking like the teams to beat, but in this poxy division, Peterborough might be top by Christmas! Back to back wins after a terrible start! At this rate Ferguson will be taking Posh up the Arse - and Becks wouldn't like that would he? 

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Desperate Hughes Blames Twattenbung For QPR Defeat

Oh dear. Mark Hughes is so desperate to excuse his own ineptitude in the transfer market that he is blaming referee Twattenbung. Now I am no fan of the ultimate bastard in the black, but Hughes seems to forget that EIGHT West Ham players were on yellow cards, walking on egg shells thanks to Twattenbung's desperation to be the headline story, but all eight had the sense not to invite red. But not Diakite.
The tackle was unquestionably worthy of a second yellow. The goon dived in and caught the man. Given yellows were chucked around left, right and centre by the idiot in the middle, that tackle was screaming out for a red, as was Cesar's decision to give the grounded Vaz Te a shove. Instead of dispensing soft yellows like a chemist dispenses prescriptions when flu strikes, Twattenbung should have shown real balls by flashing a second red to a QPR player, leaving them without a keeper!
Hughes looks and sounds desperate. He was exposed by Woy after leaving Fulham, made to look a mug by Mancini at Man City and is now making even Warnock look good. What fun!

Warnock smiling at Leeds as West Ham condemn QPR to a relegation battle

The debate is already on. Was that a very impressive West Ham performance or are QPR already dead men walking?
Whilst I was fulsome in my praise for the overall performance, I found quite a bit to criticise in relation to individual performances. Cole, in particular, was embarrassing. I accept his hold up play and flick ons were good - better than a couple of seasons ago - but his finishing is beyond a joke. That near post header was laughable and the effort when clean through on goal was a Hammer Horror show. You cannot afford to carry a player THAT bad in front of goal. I like the guy and have backed him in the face of vitriolic criticism in the past, but sadly enough is enough.
At the back, there are still worries. Was O'Brien injured or did Allardyce act before it was too late? He gave away two free kicks in dangerous positions and is struggling on the wrong flank. The trouble is, young Potts apart, we only have McCartney to replace him - or Taylor who is inept at full back. IF we are to stay above the relegation dog fight, we need to source a left back in January.
Collins continues to make a mistake a game - he made amends this time by blocking Neptune's shot after Ginge kicked thin air from a routine cross, but a better forward would have punished him.
Jussi also looks dodgy to me. He made one spectacular save, but fumbled two as well.  
But what about QPR and Mark Hughes? Redknapp's head is twitching fiercely as the possibility of managing yet another London club increases. If he lands the job, he will, of course, tell us that he was a Rangers fan as a boy!
Surely this QPR team are too good to go down? But then again, are they? Hoilett went down with Blackburn; Wright-Phillips has been relegated; so has Green; and Dyer; every side Ferdinand has played for since he left West Ham has struggled; Cisse failed in England last time around; Diakate is a twat; Zamora struggles when the pressure is on; Onuha is crap as I said when QPR signed him; Park never impressed me at Man Utd; Taarabt is brilliant in flashes, but like lightning he never strikes in the same place twice;...and so it goes on. Hughes has spent big but what has he got? A bunch of nearly men. Nearly good enough for the Prem!
As I said in my match report, QPR have started the season like we did under Grant. Once you get behind, it is one hell of a mountain to climb to escape relegation. Warnock must be loving it. And so must Barton. And Redknapp for completely different reasons!
All that said, to dismiss our performance because QPR are poor would be unfair. Allardyce selected a positive team and they responded superbly. The midfield looked excellent and when Carroll is fit, we will give most teams a game. The transformation from the side that struggled to draw at home to Leeds last season couldn't be greater. Eleven crucial, crucial points banked already. Bring on Arsenal! Allardyce enjoys upsetting Wenger!