Saturday, April 12, 2008

Bolton 1 West Ham 0

West Ham nearly managed to make it until the third minute before picking up an injury. However in the second minute Ferdinand pulled a hamstring and had to be replaced by Pantsil.

With West Ham already missing Neill that made a back four of Pantsil, Spector, Upson and McCartney. In midfield Collison was handed his first start alongside Boa Morte, Parker and Mullins. Ashton and Zamora started up front (Solano didn't even make the bench - is he injured now?)

Bolton had the better of the possession and territory in the first half and forced West Ham to clear off the line twice. The best of these chances fell to Davies in the 29th minute. Davies met a corner with his head and Parker was forced to clear the ball from his own goal-line.

In the 38th minute Bolton actually put the ball in the back of the net. Campo took a free-kick and the ball was flicked on and fell to Diouf at the far post. Diouf poked the ball home but was correctly judged offside.

West Ham's only real chance fell to Ashton in the 36th minute. Ashton made a good run and shot left-footed from 18 yards, forcing a save from Ali Al Habsi.

The second half started disastrously for West Ham. Thirty seconds after the kick-off Taylor took an in-swinging corner, the ball found its way to Davies six yards out and he fired home with his right foot. West Ham almost replied ten minutes later when first Boa Morte's shot was blocked by Steinsson and then Ashton tried an overhead kick which Al Habsi was forced to tip over.

Bolton thought they had killed the game off in the 65th minute when Nolan put the ball in the back of the net but, for the second time in the game, they had a goal disallowed for offside. Sears was then brought on for Zamora. Ashton, almost immediately, shot left footed from a tight angle and forced another save from Al Habsi.

In the last ten minutes West Ham managed to apply some pressure on the Bolton area for the first time in the match. In the 83rd minute Parker shot right-footed from the centre of the penalty area and Al Habsi saved diving low to his left. In the 87th minute Mullins shot from 30 yards but his shot was blocked by Nolan. In the end though it was too little too late from West Ham.

Another bad day at the office for the Irons, with another loss and another player out for the rest of the season. Derby County are already licking their lips at the prospect of facing West Ham next week.


At 5:29 PM, Anonymous greendressinDUBLIN said...

keir, your last paragraph made me laugh and that is a good thing after this game.

these last two games have just been really uninspiring and that's why i didn't even comment on the last came )just a case of when you have nothing good/nice to say, maybe you just shouldn't say anything at all).

when the opponent scores during the first 10 minutes or better yet turns the game into a point of no return by the 35th minute with 3 goals, that begs the question was the team prepared for the game. if the team is crushed, that makes me think that not all of the 11 players put their hearts into the game.

however, when the opponent scores within _minutes_ of returning from the half time break, that begs the question is the manager doing enough during the break. i am wondering if he can look at his role in this defeat. a great example of the effects of a manager’s halftime pep talk on the players can be had in the following article:,,2270868,00.html

i definitely don’t agree with the “sack Curbishley agenda” and that is what it is –an agenda. however, I would like the manager to address his role in this defeat.

At 8:46 AM, Anonymous portugal said...

Obviously having Neill unavailable ,and then losing Ferdinand meant it was a certainty we wud concede. In fairness ,the fact that we only conceded once is a miracle, and a crditto the way we defended under difficult circumstances.

Good question on Solano- where was he?

As for Curbishley,yes ,I think questions have to be asked after conceding 2 minutes after the interval, from a set piece, which is th eonly way it seems Bolton can score.

6 defeats in 8 don t lie. Thankfully these defeats have been narrower then the previous trio.
And in fairnes, this set of defeats has come whilst having Ljungberg,neill and Ferdinand unavailable,in addition to the already mile long list.

But that doesn t excuse the manager from being accountable. The manager chose the players he bought in the transfer window. The manager chooses pre-season and mid-season training routines for the fitness of the players. And the manager chooses who to play from those available for selection.

He s not a bad manager. H e s done a decent job. That does not in and of itself mean that he s the right guy to move the club from 10th to 6th over a 3 year period. Not all of us who question whether he is the right man ,feel that he s below par, or have a burning desire to see him sacked. Some of us simply question whether the club is capable of making the progress we feel is within the club s grasp, under his direction. doesn t make him a bad manager -it just means someone else might do better.


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