Sunday, February 7, 2010
A McCarthy goal line clearance, a shuddering Stanislas free kick against the crossbar, a stoppage time Mido header against the post, a Scott Parker save by the Beast and a disallowed Cole goal. Hammer fans will rue their team's luck when they look back at this match.
However, West Ham fans must be sick to the stomach watching the many times that poor defending has undermine the Irons season. West Ham have still not been able to turn supposedly "winnable" matches into actual victories and this must be a concern to Zola.
If we can't defend decently, then we should put more emphasis on our newly acquired attacking strengths. West Ham need to win matches badly, and we still looked incapable of doing so. Honestly, it is hard to see where the next win will come from as confidence seemed low and the pressure is starting to show on the players.
Danny Fox, Leon Cort and David Nugent were Brian Laws signings prior to this match. All three signings played significant roles in this vital win for Burnley. Leon Cort's clearance, Danny Fox's assist and goal and Nugent's goal dragged West Ham back down into the relegation zone.
On the flip side, West Ham's high profile January signings could not bring the win that was expected. Still, the goal scored was a result of two loan signings, Mido's assist to Ilan who made an interesting debut start to his Upton Park career.
There are positives definitely for West Ham. McCarthy's injury and Mido's enthusiastic performance mean that he should start against Birmingham. Against Burnley, West Ham had 28 goal attempts out of which eight were on target. Compare that with our current season average of 15 shot attempts and five on target, then there is a marked improvement in our forward play.
It is my belief that Gianfranco Zola is now living on borrowed time, he'll probably have until the end of this month to show results. So far he has been poor, though his players have not made things easier for him. Seven points against Birmingham, Hull City and Manchester United are a must for him to keep his job.
Is Mark Hughes really waiting in the wings? The Davids had mentioned that they have room for a £100,000 a week player...how about a £100,000 a week manager? But can Hughes get things right in such a short space of time? West Ham need something to jolt their season, if transfer signings can't do it, then perhaps a new manager will. For now, us fans can only hope and wait that the Hammers can put a sensational run together and turn that proverbial corner.
Liverpool has finally turned the corner that Rafa always spoke about, and so West Ham must be looking to do the same as well. The idea of being "too good to go down" is utter nonsense....if we can't beat the likes of Burnley and Portsmouth, then we are definitely NOT too good to go down. There is cause for worry, guys.
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