West Ham debacle


This is getting to be a cruel joke.

Martin Jol has it in his power to end all this but for whatever reason is not doing so.  And his employers?  At this juncture it’s not entirely clear what they are waiting for.

Honestly, I can see an argument why a Jol/Meulensteen partnership would be a good idea.  But that’s ignoring the present predicament in which the team is absolutely destroyed.  We have nothing, nothing at all.  The players are probably not that bad as a group but are a collective shambles.  They know it, everyone knows it.  Presently there appears no way out.

Things, then:

Stekelenberg, like Stockdale before him, played well, but was given plenty to do.  Victor Valdes of Barcelona doesn’t get this many shots in a month.  Our man did what he had to but still let in three against a team struggling mightily.

Last week I saw encouraging signs brought about by a sensible team selection (read: Derek Boateng played) but today was appalling.  Sidwell was back in the side and again we reverted to tripe. Duff and Taraabt came in to see what difference they might make but of course they achieved nothing.  We can say that Taraabt looked bright and maybe he did, but the team didn’t get a shot on target all game so, you know.  Needless to say, Berbatov and Ruiz weren’t playing but their absence curiously failed to turn us into Brazil 1970.  Maybe they are important players….

In the same way, the back four was able to be terrible without Senderos, suggesting that he wasn’t actually to blame.

You can read the last two points and conclude that it really doesn’t matter who plays, the whole squad is so bummed out, nothing will happen.  We’re playing at about 60% capacity for some reason.  I always felt with Roy that his team had some kind of weird multiplier effect, they made each other better.  Now we have the reverse, like some grand mansion built with bricks but not mortar.

We can only conclude that nobody knows what they’re supposed to be doing.

This is unforgivable in this day and age.

I can’t even be bothered to talk about Darren Bent.  I think he and Stekelenberg are about the only ones free of blame but I know not everyone agrees.


6 thoughts on “West Ham debacle

  1. Rich, I saw your discussion about Bent on Twitter after the game with Mimi and somebody else (apologies, I can’t remember who), and I wanted to chime in. I’m with Mimi: I think he may be done. It’s true he gets no support (as is the case with seemingly everyone we put up top), but he seems utterly incapable of creating his own shot if the ball does come near him. He gets utterly destroyed in the air, and if he gets his ball at his feet near the top of the box he seems to want to lay it off rather than maneuvering for a look. Perhaps, as you argued, he’s very good at putting the ball in the net if he finds himself with the ball in the right position. But can’t the same be said of Marcello Trotta? I’m not sure that’s enough, and whether it’s the league or the formation, I don’t know.

    It blows my mind that Boateng doesn’t start every game.

    1. Repeating what I’ve previously said, I agree with CT and others about Bent. Yes, he hasn’t had a whole lot of service, but he’s done little with the service he’s had, especially in the Swansea match. His speed is gone, “[Player] plays a ball for Bent to chase” is the most hopeless sentence in the English language. Is it any surprise that Lambert was happy to see the back of him?

  2. Of all the many problems we have one major one is that none of the players seem to have a clue what their colleagues might be about to do with the ball.

    Random hit and hope. Darren Bent in his prime wouldn’t have a chance.

  3. Looking at Soho’s difference in advanced stats last season under their two managers gives me hope that we can still turn this thing around.

    That said, has a football manager ever lost 5 straight games (or 6 if we include League Cup) and *not* been fired? Kahn has been playing his foray into this sport cautiously, and rightfully so. Yet the current situation is now untenable for him too; not just Jol. Expect action.

  4. As Timmy said, Khan has been playing it with understandable caution given his novice status, added to which he seems the kind of American keen not to come across as a pushy know-all master of the world. While not the worst traits, they have probably delayed things a tad longer than would have been the case under Al Fayed, to no avail.

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