Latest West Ham News

Latest West Ham News

Claret & Blue View: West Ham again fail to make most of first half dominance

10:46 02 April 2012

Sam Allardyce

Sam Allardyce

“We gifted the three points to the visitors having had control of much of the first half”

At the end of last week’s blog I suggested that West Ham needed to take six points from six against Peterborough and Reading. We took three and missing out on the other three has put a massive dent in our hopes for automatic promotion.

The game at Peterborough on Tuesday seems a decade ago having subsequently handed three points to Reading on Saturday at the Boleyn.

Credit where it’s due, Reading, on a high at the moment, kept themselves in the game and took their opportunities. West Ham really did help them out however. Defensive errors haven’t cost us too much this season (compared to previous seasons), but they certainly did on Saturday afternoon. We gifted the three points to the visitors having had control of much of the first half.

Mark Noble’s half time withdrawal had a telling impact on the game and we lost the control we had enjoyed in the first period.

Certain sections of the Boleyn crowd were bemused as to why Sam elected to add an extra defender in place of Noble. It may be viewed by some as over cautious but I can understand the reasoning behind it. Sam obviously is set on the idea that we have to have a defensive midfielder in order to allow the others in the middle freedom to attack. The only other midfield option on the bench was Henri Lansbury and I can only assume that Sam views him as too attacking minded for a holding role.

This is undoubtedly a cautious approach but I’d trust Tomkins at the base of the midfield above Lansbury, especially with the game poised at 1-2 and Reading looking dangerous on the break.

This caution from the manager however, particularly at home, is creating frustration in the stands. Sam, rightly or wrongly, thinks about not losing games first, winning games second. Saturday was just one of those days where neither plan worked.

I think the final score flattered Reading somewhat, indeed West Ham did enough to win the game in the first half but, as has become all too common in 2012, they failed to do so.

The Reading game has gone now. There’s no time to reflect on the result, to sulk or to place blame. The team, and the fans, must pick each other up, dust each other down and move on. After all, we have no divine right to walk out of this league. For the first time this season, automatic promotion isn’t in our own hands, although it is still a possibility given Reading’s final sequence of games and tendency to falter in April. If, however, we are destined to compete in the play offs then we had better make sure that we hit some form first, starting on Friday at Barnsley.

Related articles

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest West Ham news

Friday, May 6, 2016
West Ham United goalkeeper Adrian celebrates after Cheikhou Kouyate put his side in front at The Hawthorns (pic: Nick Potts/PA)

Slaven Bilic has ruled goalkeeper Adrian out of the clash with Swansea at Upton Park.

Friday, May 6, 2016
Nemanja Matic of Chelsea and James McCarthy of Everton compete for the ball (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

We round up all the talking points from Friday morning’s papers ahead of a busy weekend of football around London.

Thursday, May 5, 2016
Arsenal's Alexis Sanchez (left) and West Ham United's Dimitri Payet battle for the ball during the Barclays Premier League match at Upton Park, London.

When does the 2016/17 Premier League kick off? When do the fixtures come out? We’ve put together a guide to all the key dates for Premier League and Football League fans.

Friday, May 6, 2016
West Ham United's Mark Noble (left) and West Bromwich Albion's James McClean (right) battle for the ball during the Barclays Premier League match at The Hawthorns, West Bromwich.

West Ham are currently the only London side playing a pre-season friendly in the capital ahead of the 2016/17 Premier League season.

Thursday, May 5, 2016
West Ham United's Frank McAvennie scoring for West Ham against Oxford United at Upton Park

Lee Power remembers his fond childhood visits to Upton Park

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Read more
Yummy traditional afternoon teas for two

MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Traditional Afternoon Teas for two at a location of your choice! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Read more

Latest Tech News

Transport