Nostalgia

On This Day: 31st March

Sunderland 1-2 West Ham, 31st March 2014

5 Seconds of Summer were number one with ‘She Looks So Perfect’, a jury was selected to hear a fresh inquest into the 96 deaths caused by the 1989 Hillsborough disaster and Captain America: The Winter Soldier was in UK cinemas as West Ham United completed a 2-1 win at Sunderland.

Andy Carroll opened the scoring in the ninth minute, rising above the Sunderland defence to power home a header from a left-wing corner. The visitors doubled their lead five minutes into the second half, Carroll chesting down a high, hanging free-kick from halfway by James Tomkins into the path of Mo Diame, whose shot skidded into the corner beyond the helpless Vito Mannone via a slight deflection.

Gus Poyet introduced winger Adam Johnson and the substitute swept in a precise finish with 25 minutes remaining to set up a tense finale but the Hammers held out to leave the Black Cats second bottom and four points adrift of safety with eight games to play. The goals from this game can be seen on the WHTID social media pages.

Sam Allardyce’s Hammers would go on to finish the 2013/14 Premier League season in 13th place, with the Mackems ending up one below in 14th position. Manchester City won the title, Arsenal won the FA Cup and Mark Noble was voted Hammer of the Year for the second time.

Sunderland: Vito Mannone, Phil Bardsley, Santiago Vergini, Wes Brown, John O’Shea (Craig Gardner), Marcos Alonso, Liam Bridcutt, Ki Sung-Yueng (Ignacio Scocco), Lee Cattermole (Adam Johnson), Connor Wickham, Fabio Borini.

West Ham United: Adrian, Guy Demel, James Tomkins, Winston Reid, George McCartney (Pablo Armero), Mark Noble, Matt Taylor, Stewart Downing, Kevin Nolan (Antonio Nocerino), Mo Diame (Roger Johnson), Andy Carroll.

West Ham 3-0 Southampton, 31st March 2018

31st March 2018 – Rudimental featuring Jess Glynne, Macklemore & Dan Caplen were number one with ‘These Days’, Peter Rabbit topped the UK box office and former England international Ray Wilkins died four days later. David Moyes’ struggling West Ham United, meanwhile, beat Mark Hughes’ Southampton 3-0 in a Premier League encounter in front of 56,882 at London Stadium.

West Ham recovered from the early loss of the injured Michail Antonio when Portuguese loanee Joao Mario smashed in a 13th-minute opener from the edge of the penalty area after being picked out by Cheikhou Kouyate, who had surged powerfully away on the counter-attack from his own half. Scorer Mario then turned creator four minutes later, setting up Marko Arnautovic for the second with a brilliant cross from the right that the Austrian bundled home at the second attempt after his initial header had been saved.

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Arnautovic added his second in first-half stoppage time, volleying home superbly after a rare piece of quality end product from Arthur Masuaku, who was playing his first match after a six-game suspension for spitting at an opponent. With the game wrapped up by half-time, a quiet second half followed, although Aaron Cresswell did strike the crossbar with a fierce, dipping volley from distance.

West Ham went on to finish the 2017/18 season in 13th position. Arnautovic was the club’s top goalscorer with 11 goals from 35 matches; he was also voted Hammer of the Year with Declan Rice runner-up. Southampton finished 17th, Manchester City won the league and Chelsea won the FA Cup.

West Ham United: Joe Hart, Pablo Zabaleta, Declan Rice, Angelo Ogbonna, Aaron Cresswell, Arthur Masuaku, Cheikhou Kouyate (Josh Cullen), Mark Noble, Joao Mario, Michail Antonio (Edimilson Fernandes), Marko Arnautovic (Jordan Hugill).

Southampton: Alex McCarthy, Cedric Soares, Jack Stephens, Wesley Hoedt, Ryan Bertrand, Dusan Tadic, Mario Lemina, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, Nathan Redmond (Sofiane Boufal), Charlie Austin (Guido Carrillo), Manolo Gabbiadini (Shane Long).

I’d like to finish by wishing a very Happy Birthday to my sister, a season ticket holder with me in the Billy Bonds Stand – Happy Birthday Nat!


Nostalgia

On This Day: 26th March

Given the lack of football at present due to the Coronavirus, and the consequent lack of match previews, I’ll be occasionally delving into Hammers history with some ‘On This Day’ features and birthday celebrations for Hammers past. I hope all readers and their families are well. Keep safe – Dan.

West Ham 2-1 Wimbledon, 26th March 2000

In the first of two featured games today, we travel back exactly 20 years to 26th March 2000, a time when Tony Blair was Prime Minister, ‘Never Be The Same Again’ by Melanie C was number one and Toy Story 2 topped the UK box office. Jadon Sancho was born the day before and singer Ian Dury died the day after. West Ham United, meanwhile, met Wimbledon on a Sunday afternoon in a Premier League encounter.

The Hammers ran out 2-1 winners in front of 22,438 spectators at the Boleyn Ground that day, in a game that will forever be remembered for one of the greatest goals the old stadium ever saw. Only nine minutes had been played when Marc-Vivien Foe sprayed a pass out to Trevor Sinclair on the right flank; Sinclair’s driven crossfield, diagonal pass sailed over the head of Dons defender Kenny Cunningham and was inch-perfect for the lurking Paolo Di Canio. In an instant, the Italian maverick left the ground with both feet and, while in mid-air, volleyed the ball back across goalkeeper Neil Sullivan with the outside of his magic wand of a right boot. Martin Tyler’s commentary – “Oh I do not believe that – that is sensational… even by his standards” is synonymous with one of the greatest goals scored in the Premier League era.

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Debutant Frederic Kanoute – signed on the March transfer deadline in an initial loan move from Lyon – scored the hosts’ second on the hour when he was left in acres of space to run on to a Sinclair pass and slot confidently past Sullivan. Former Hammer Michael Hughes scored his own stunner with a dipping left-foot volley from distance which beat Craig Forrest with 15 minutes remaining.

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Harry Redknapp’s Irons would end the 1999/2000 season in ninth position while Egil Olsen’s Dons were relegated in 18th place. Di Canio was voted Hammer of the Year, with Sinclair runner-up, in a season which saw Manchester United win the league title and Chelsea beat Aston Villa to be crowned FA Cup winners in the last Final held at the old Wembley.

West Ham United: Craig Forrest, Steve Lomas, Rio Ferdinand, Igor Stimac, Scott Minto, Trevor Sinclair, Marc-Vivien Foe, Frank Lampard Junior, John Moncur (Marc Keller), Paolo Di Canio, Frederic Kanoute.

Wimbledon: Neil Sullivan, Kenny Cunningham, Trond Andersen, Chris Willmott (Dean Blackwell), Alan Kimble, Neal Ardley (Carl Leaburn), Robbie Earle (Damien Francis), Jason Euell, Michael Hughes, Marcus Gayle, Andreas Lund.

West Ham 2-1 Hull, 26th March 2014

In the second of our two featured matches, we travel back exactly six years to 26th March 2014, when David Cameron was Prime Minister, ‘I Got U’ by Duke Dumont featuring Jax Jones was number one and The Grand Budapest Hotel was in UK cinemas.

The Hammers ran out 2-1 winners in front of 31,033 spectators at the Boleyn Ground that evening, taking the lead in the 26th minute through Mark Noble’s penalty after Hull ‘keeper Allan McGregor was sent off for bringing down Mohamed Diame. The Senegalese midfielder, who would sign for Hull the following summer, appeared to control the ball with his hand and referee Mike Dean did not initially penalise McGregor’s challenge but awarded a penalty and issued a red card on the advice of his assistant. To compound matters, McGregor suffered kidney damage in the collision.

Future Hammers striker Nikica Jelavic deflected in Tom Huddlestone’s free-kick to level three minutes into the second half, but James Chester diverted Guy Demel’s speculative cross in just six minutes later, swinging his left boot wildly and shinning the ball over substitute goalkeeper Steve Harper to restore the hosts’ advantage.

Despite the Irons claiming the three points, and ending a run of three consecutive league defeats in the process, a section of the home support greeted the final whistle with boos, prompting manager Sam Allardyce to cup his ear to the crowd in surprise at the criticism. The victory saw the Hammers leapfrog the Tigers into 11th in the table.

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Allardyce’s Irons would end the 2013/14 season seven points clear of the dreaded drop in 13th position while the Tigers would finish four points clear in 16th place. Noble was voted Hammer of the Year for the second time, with Adrian runner-up, in a season which saw Manchester City win the league title and Arsenal beat Hull to be crowned FA Cup winners.

West Ham United: Adrian, Guy Demel, James Collins (Roger Johnson), James Tomkins, George McCartney, Mark Noble, Matt Taylor, Mohamed Diame (Joe Cole), Kevin Nolan, Stewart Downing, Andy Carroll.

Hull City: Allan McGregor, Ahmed Elmohamady, James Chester, Curtis Davies, Maynor Figueroa (Liam Rosenior), Alex Bruce (Steve Harper), Jake Livermore, David Meyler, Tom Huddlestone, Nikica Jelavic (Yannick Sagbo), Shane Long.

You can see all the goals from both these games on the WHTID social media pages.


Dan Coker's Match Preview

Match Preview: Arsenal v West Ham

Blast from the past

14th November 1964 – The Supremes were number one with ‘Baby Love’, The Curse of the Mummy’s Tomb was in UK cinemas and the House of Commons had voted to abolish the death penalty for murder in Britain five days previously. Meanwhile, Ron Greenwood’s West Ham United were sealing a 3-0 victory over Billy Wright’s Arsenal in front of 36,026 at Highbury.

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Former Gunners goalkeeper Jim Standen was in goal for the Irons, while future West Ham striker John Radford was in the Arsenal line-up. The Hammers led at the interval when Geoff Hurst’s shot went in off David Court’s boot. Johnny ‘Budgie’ Byrne made it 2-0 on the hour and Martin Peters, who played at centre-half in this match and had only turned 21 six days earlier, converted Alan Sealey’s pass to complete a resounding victory which remains, to date, West Ham’s biggest away win at Arsenal. Peters, pictured above at the start of this 1964/65 campaign, sadly passed away four days before last Christmas.

The Gunners would finish 13th in 1964/65, while the Hammers would end the campaign in ninth and win the European Cup Winners’ Cup. Manchester United won the league and Liverpool won the FA Cup. ‘Budgie’ Byrne would end the campaign as the Hammers’ top scorer with 30 goals from 45 matches. Peters was voted Hammer of the Year, with Bobby Moore runner-up.

Arsenal: Tony Burns, Don Howe, Frank McLintock, Terry Neill, Billy McCullough, George Armstrong, David Court, George Eastham, Alan Skirton, Joe Baker, John Radford.

West Ham United: Jim Standen, John Bond, Ken Brown, Martin Peters, Jack Burkett, Alan Sealey, Eddie Bovington, Ron Boyce, Johnny Sissons, Johnny ‘Budgie’ Byrne, Geoff Hurst.

Club Connections

A large group of players have turned out for West Ham United and Arsenal. Lukasz Fabianski and Jack Wilshere return to their former club. Other players to have represented both clubs include:

Goalkeepers: Richard Wright, Charles Ambler, Manuel Almunia, Jim Standen.

Defenders: Matthew Upson, Nigel Winterburn, Steve Walford, Bob Stevenson, Carl Jenkinson.

Midfielders: Stewart Robson, Liam Brady, Yossi Benayoun, Archie Macauley, Luis Boa Morte, David Bentley, Samir Nasri, James Bigden, Roddy McEachrane, Alex Song, Henri Lansbury, Fred Kemp, Freddie Ljungberg.

Strikers: Lucas Perez, Harry Lewis, Bobby Gould, Jeremie Aliadiere, Dick Burgess, John Blackwood, Fergie Hunt, Dr Jimmy Marshall, Kaba Diawara, Jimmy Bloomfield, Charlie Satterthwaite, Marouane Chamakh, Billy Linward, Lee Chapman, Tommy Lee, Ian Wright, Peter Kyle, John Hartson, Stan Earle, John Radford, Davor Suker.

Ron Greenwood was also assistant manager at Arsenal before becoming manager of West Ham.

Today’s focus though falls on a Scottish player who captained Arsenal before later playing for West Ham. James Jackson was born on the 15th September 1875 in Cambuslang, Glasgow but his family emigrated to Australia where he was raised from the age of two. He began his senior football career at Adamstown Rosebud in Newcastle, New South Wales. He returned to Scotland in 1893, appearing for Newton Thistle, Cambuslang and briefly for Rangers before moving to England to join Newcastle United, who he helped to promotion to the Football League in his first season.

A strict teetotaller, Jackson joined Woolwich Arsenal in 1899, attracted by the club’s willingness to help him open a sports shop just outside the Manor Ground. He made his debut aged 23 against Leicester Fosse on 2nd September 1899 and was a regular at the club for the next six seasons, playing either at left-back or wing-half. He was a virtual ever-present in the Gunners’ 1903/04 Second Division promotion-winning season, and captained the club in four of his five seasons at the club, including their inaugural top flight campaign. In all he played 204 matches for Arsenal, scoring one goal. He is pictured below, fourth from the right in the back row, with his Arsenal team-mates from the 1904/05 First Division season.

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Jackson left Arsenal in 1905 to become player-manager of Leyton, newly admitted to the Southern League, but he resigned to sign as a player for West Ham United in November 1905. A major capture for the Hammers, the East Ham Echo wrote:

“While with Arsenal Jackson was regarded as one of the finest backs in the South, and it was with great regret that the Woolwich club’s supporters learned that the skipper was leaving to take up the position of player/manager to Leyton. A few days ago the sporting public were greatly surprised to read in the London papers that Jackson had tendered his resignation, which had been accepted by the Leyton directorate. This was indeed a sensation, and was quickly followed by the startling, but welcome, news that he had been signed on for West Ham.”

The 30-year-old strong, forceful defender made his Hammers debut in a 2-0 win over Brighton at Upton Park on 11th November 1905. ‘Jemmy’ was ever-present for the rest of the 1905/06 Southern League season, forming a fabled full-back partnership with another Scot, Dave Gardner, and making 24 appearances as the Irons finished 11th. His final match for the club was a 1-0 defeat at Portsmouth on 28th April 1906.

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Jackson rejoined Rangers in 1906, spending two years with the club before moving on to Port Glasgow Athletic. He joined Hamilton Accies in 1910 but his spell with the club was brief before he signed for Morton. He ended his career in 1915 after four years with Abercorn. He had two sons who became footballers – the elder, James, played more than 200 times for Liverpool (where he was also captain) before being ordained a minister in the Presbyterian Church. The younger, Archie, played for Sunderland and Tranmere. Jackson’s nephew was the Australian test cricketer Archie Jackson. ‘Jemmy’ Jackson’s date of death is unknown.

Referee

The referee on Saturday will be Martin Atkinson. 2019/20 is Atkinson’s 15th as a Premier League referee. Since West Ham United achieved promotion back to the top flight in 2012 Atkinson has refereed 24 of our league matches, officiating in 11 wins for the Hammers, three draws and ten defeats.

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His Hammers appointments last season were our 3-1 win at Everton in September 2018 and our 1-0 home defeat to Tottenham in October last year. His most recent match in charge of the Irons was our 1-0 win at Southampton in December. Atkinson was also the referee the last time West Ham won at Arsenal, under Super Slaven Bilic in August 2015.

Possible line-ups

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta will be without the injured Calum Chambers, Cedric Soares, Sead Kolasinac and Lucas Torreira, while Kieran Tierney is a doubt.

West Ham United are without Ryan Fredericks, Tomas Soucek, Jack Wilshere and Andriy Yarmolenko. West Ham’s tally of five Premier League victories at Arsenal is bettered only by Manchester United (eight) and Liverpool (seven).

Possible Arsenal XI: Leno; Maitland-Niles, Sokratis, David Luiz, Saka; Xhaka, Guendouzi; Pepe, Ozil, Aubameyang; Lacazette.

Possible West Ham United XI: Fabianski; Ngakia, Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell; Rice, Noble; Bowen, Fornals, Antonio; Haller.

Enjoy the game – Come On You Irons!


Dan Coker's Match Preview

Match Preview: West Ham v Southampton

Blast from the past

19th April 1952 – Nat King Cole was number one with ‘Unforgettable’ and Ted Fenton’s mid-table West Ham United beat George Roughton’s Southampton 4-0 in a Second Division encounter in front of 18,119 at The Boleyn Ground.

This match was the Hammers’ last home game, and final victory, of the 1951/52 campaign – they would close the season with two away draws, at Brentford and Sheffield Wednesday. They came up against a side containing future Chelsea and England right-back Peter Sillett, while fellow full-back Bill Ellerington had already been capped by the Three Lions.

West Ham’s goals in this victory 68 years ago came courtesy of a brace from 32-year-old East Ham-born outside-right Terry Woodgate (pictured) and strikes from 21-year-old inside-right Jim Barrett Junior (the son of Hammers legend and England international ‘Big Jim’ Barrett) and 24-year-old Irish centre-forward Fred Kearns.

John Terence (‘Terry’) Woodgate had made his Hammers debut before the Second World War, on 7th April 1939 in a 2-0 Good Friday home defeat to Bradford Park Avenue. He won a regular place in the first team after the conflict having served for more than six years with the Essex Regiment and Royal Artillery. He scored a seven-minute hat-trick against Plymouth in a Football League South fixture at Upton Park on 16th February 1946. He bagged a total of 74 goals in 355 appearances in the claret and blue, making his final appearance in a 5-1 Essex Professional Cup defeat at Colchester on 22nd October 1953 before transferring to Peterborough in March 1954 following the emergence of Harry Hooper and Malcolm Musgrove as regular first-team contenders. He later played for March Town United, and went on to be the landlord of the Cock Inn pub in the Cambridgeshire town of March after his retirement from playing. Terry Woodgate died in the town of March, aged 65, on 26th April 1985.

West Ham went on to finish the 1951/52 season in 12th position. Bert Hawkins was the club’s top goalscorer with 15 goals from 37 matches. Southampton finished 13th, Sheffield Wednesday won the Second Division title, Manchester United won the league and Newcastle won the FA Cup.

West Ham United: Ernie Gregory, George Wright, Harry Kinsell, Derek Parker, Malcolm Allison, Frank O’Farrell, Terry Woodgate, Jim Barrett Junior, Fred Kearns, Gerry Gazzard, Jimmy Andrews.

Southampton: Fred Kiernan, Peter Sillett, Billy Ellerington, Bryn Elliott, Stan Clements, Joe Mallett, Eric Day, Ted Bates, Walter Judd, Jimmy McGowan, Tom Lowder.

Club Connections

Michail Antonio welcomes his former club. An array of West Ham United’s good, bad and ugly have also turned out for Southampton:

Goalkeepers: Richard Wright, George Kitchen.

Defenders: Richard Hall, Christian Dailly, Joe Kirkup, Wayne Bridge, Neil Ruddock, Jose Fonte, Ian Pearce, Bill Adams, Darren Powell, Albie Roles, Horace Glover, Calum Davenport.

Midfielders: Bobby Weale, Luis Boa Morte, Nigel Quashie, Eyal Berkovic, Robbie Slater, Peter Cowper, Jimmy Carr, Paul Allen.

Strikers: Vic Watson, Justin Fashanu, David Speedie, David Connolly, Viv Gibbins, Iain Dowie, Ted MacDougall, Henri Camara, Alex McDonald, Frank Costello, Walter Pollard, Arthur Wilson, Jimmy Harris, Jack Foster, Jack Farrell.

In addition, George Kay played for the Hammers and managed the Saints while Harry Redknapp and Alan Pardew have managed both clubs.

Today’s focus though is on a player who turned out for Southampton before representing West Ham later in his career. Fred Harrison was a centre-forward who was born on 2nd July 1880 in Winchester. Starting his career with local sides Fitzhugh Rovers and Bitterne Guild in Southampton, he was discovered by famous Saints player Joe Turner who recommended him to the Southampton directors as a “fast goal-getter with a deadly shot”. The 20-year-old Harrison made his Saints debut in the penultimate match of the 1900/01 Southern League championship season. During the following season, Harrison gradually established himself in the team on the left wing, making 15 league appearances and scoring five goals.

Moving to centre-forward ‘Buzzy’, as he was known by his adoring public at The Dell, quickly found his form scoring five goals in consecutive Southern League home matches against Wellingborough Town and Northampton in March 1903. He finished the 1902/03 season as top scorer with 17 goals from just 13 matches as Southampton won the Southern League championship. He was again top scorer in the 1903/04 season with 27 goals from 32 league appearances as the Saints clinched the Southern League title for the sixth (and final) time in eight seasons – he scored hat-tricks in a 5-1 victory over Northampton on 7th December 1903 and in a 6-1 defeat of Bristol Rovers on 12th March 1904 with his form earning him an England trial. Harrison suffered from illness in 1904/05 and struggled to find the form which had made him such a success in the previous season. He regained some of his form in the 1905/06 and 1906/07 seasons, during which he was again top scorer. By now Southampton were beginning to struggle both on the pitch and financially and in November 1907, along with Fred Mouncher, he was sold to Fulham for the huge sum of £1,000. Harrison had made 166 appearances for Southampton, scoring 88 goals.

After nearly four years in the Football League with the west Londoners, the 30-year-old Harrison (pictured) moved to Southern League West Ham United with team-mate George Redwood in 1911, again for £1,000, and got off to a flying start in Hammers colours by scoring on his debut in a 4-1 win against former club Southampton on Good Friday, 14th April 1911; he also bagged the only goal of the game in the reverse fixture at The Dell three days later. He endeared himself further to the West Ham faithful when he scored both goals in a 2-1 win over Millwall at Upton Park on 4th November 1911 in front of a 23,000 crowd, more than double the usual Hammers attendance at the time. Harrison scored 16 goals in the 1911/12 campaign, partly making up for the loss of George Webb when illness ruled the England international out for the rest of the season in December. He formed a great partnership with Danny Shea and was part of the Irons team that defeated First Division Middlesbrough in the FA Cup second round in February 1912 – Harrison scored West Ham’s goal in the first match which was drawn 1-1 at Ayresome Park and, despite carrying an injury from the first match, he scored the winner in the replay at the Boleyn.

George Hilsdon, returning to the club from Chelsea, replaced Harrison in the front-line in the 1912/13 season. Harrison was switched to play at centre-half for several games, including a notable 5-0 FA Cup second round defeat at Aston Villa on 1st February 1913 – Villa would go on to finish second in the First Division and win the FA Cup at the end of the campaign. Harrison scored his last goal for the Hammers in a 1-1 home draw, again against former club Southampton, on 15th February 1913; his final appearance for the Irons was on the 29th March 1913, in a 2-1 home win over Brentford. Harrison had made 62 appearances in his two years with West Ham United, scoring 23 goals. He transferred to Bristol City in August 1913, where he ended his career the following year.

After being gassed during action in the First World War, he set up a master plasterers business in Southampton. Fred Harrison passed away in Swaythling, Southampton on 21st November 1969, at the age of 89.

Referee

The referee on Saturday will be 41-year-old Anthony Taylor – his Irons appointments this season have been for our 1-1 draw at Brighton in August and, most recently, our 2-0 home win over Manchester United in September. He also refereed our 1-0 win at Tottenham last April.

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Controversy and incident are never far away when the Cheshire-based official is the referee for a West Ham United match. Taylor was in charge for our 2-1 opening-day defeat at Chelsea in August 2016, awarding the home side a penalty and later controversially failing to issue a second yellow card to Diego Costa for an awful lunge at Adrian – Costa remained on the pitch to score the 89th-minute winner. Taylor also awarded a controversial and ultimately match-winning penalty to Liverpool at Upton Park in April 2014, while there was also controversy surrounding Guy Demel’s equaliser for West Ham in that game. Taylor is also the referee who had not one, but two red cards rescinded from the same game after he had sent off Carlton Cole and Darron Gibson in the Hammers’ 2-1 home defeat to David Moyes’ Everton in December 2012. He sent off the home side’s Kevin Mirallas against the Hammers at Goodison Park in March 2016 and awarded the Toffees a penalty which Romelu Lukaku saw saved by Adrian.

Possible line-ups

David Moyes is without Tomas Soucek, Jack Wilshere and Andriy Yarmolenko, while Ryan Fredericks is expected to be out for six weeks following surgery.

Southampton manager Ralph Hasenhuttl will be without Nathan Redmond but on-loan Tottenham right-back Kyle Walker-Peters is expected to be available. Saints winger Moussa Djenepo is a doubt for the game due to personal reasons after his mother sadly passed away.

Possible West Ham United XI: Fabianski; Ngakia, Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell; Fornals, Rice, Noble, Anderson; Antonio, Haller.

Possible Southampton XI: McCarthy; Walker-Peters, Stephens, Bednarek, Bertrand; Ward-Prowse, Romeu, Hojbjerg, Armstrong; Ings, Long.

Enjoy the game – Come On You Irons!


Dan Coker's Match Preview

Match Preview: Liverpool v West Ham

Blast from the past

Since our first game at the home of Liverpool in 1914, we have only ever won there on four occasions – the most recent was in 2015, 52 years after our previous victory there in 1963; prior to that was a win in 1954 and our first victory was back in 1928. Needless to say, Anfield is not the happiest of Hammers hunting grounds!

That first victory came on 4th February 1928 in a First Division match in front of 23,897 spectators – Leon Trotsky had been exiled to Alma-Ata four days previously while, four days later, John Logie Baird broadcasted a transatlantic television signal from London to New York. Hammers legends Jimmy Ruffell (pictured) and Vic Watson were on the scoresheet, Ruffell scoring twice and Watson once in a 3-1 victory. Dick Edmed struck the hosts’ consolation from the penalty spot. Outside-left Ruffell would end the season as the Irons’ top goalscorer with 19 goals in 41 matches.

The Hammers went on to finish in 17th place in 1927/28, level on 39 points with six other teams and one point clear of relegated Tottenham. Liverpool were one of these sides, the Reds finishing one place above the Hammers while their Merseyside rivals, Everton, won the title. Blackburn won the FA Cup.

Liverpool: Arthur Riley, Tom Lucas, David McMullan, Tom Bromilow, Fred Hopkin, Dick Edmed, Harry Chambers, Tommy Reid, John Clarke, Don MacKinlay, Jimmy Jackson.

West Ham United: Ted Hufton, Billy Henderson, Alfred Earl, Jimmy Collins, Bill Cox, Albert Cadwell, Tommy Yews, Stan Earle, Vic Watson, Billy Moore, Jimmy Ruffell.

Club Connections

Adrian welcomes his former club. A whole host of players join the goalkeeper in having turned out for both West Ham United and Liverpool, particularly over the last 30 years. These include:

Goalkeepers: David James, Charles Cotton.

Defenders: Alvaro Arbeloa, Rob Jones, David Burrows, Glen Johnson, Julian Dicks, Rigobert Song, Neil Ruddock, Thomas Stanley.

Midfielders: Don Hutchison, Yossi Benayoun, Joe Cole, Victor Moses, Paul Ince, Ray Houghton, Javier Mascherano, Stewart Downing, Mike Marsh.

Strikers: Craig Bellamy, Peter Kyle, Titi Camara, Andy Carroll, Robbie Keane, David Speedie, Neil Mellor, Charlie Satterthwaite, Danny Shone, Tom Bradshaw.

George Kay made 237 league appearances for the Hammers between 1919 and 1926, becoming the first-ever player to play more than 200 league matches for the club. Kay was also the West Ham captain in the 1923 FA Cup Final. He went on to manage Liverpool between 1936 and 1951, winning the First Division title in 1947.

Today’s focus falls on a former England left-back who played for West Ham before later appearing for Liverpool. Paul Konchesky was born in Barking on 15th May 1981 and went to school in Dagenham. He was a product of the Senrab club, which also produced the likes of John Terry and Jermain Defoe. Konchesky attended the West Ham United Academy as a youngster and was a season-ticket holder at the club who idolised Julian Dicks.

Konchesky joined Charlton at the age of 16 and became the club’s youngest ever player in 1997, a record since broken by Jonjo Shelvey. He sent a penalty over the bar against West Ham in a 2-0 defeat for Charlton at Upton Park in April 2002. The 21-year-old Konchesky made his England debut at the Boleyn Ground under Sven-Goran Eriksson in a 3-1 friendly defeat to Australia in February 2003. He joined Tottenham on loan in the summer of 2003 but was recalled in December of that year due to an injury crisis at his parent club.

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Konchesky remained at Charlton until the summer of 2005 when he signed for Alan Pardew’s newly-promoted West Ham United for a fee of £1.5m. The 24-year-old made his West Ham debut on the opening day of the 2005/06 season, in a 3-1 home win against Blackburn on 13th August 2005. He was sent off in his next game, a 0-0 draw at Newcastle the following week, although the red card was later rescinded. He won his second and final England cap in a 3-2 friendly win over Argentina in November 2005 and scored his first goal for West Ham in a 2-0 home win over Sunderland on 4th February 2006. His second and final goal for the club, in the 2006 FA Cup Final in Cardiff, so nearly saw the Hammers lift the trophy before Steven Gerrard’s late intervention; Konchesky saw his penalty saved in the shoot-out as Liverpool won the FA Cup following a 3-3 draw. Both of Konchesky’s goals for West Ham can be viewed in my video below.

Having made 45 appearances in his first season at West Ham, a loss of form for both Konchesky and the Hammers team saw him make just 25 appearances in 2006/07, with new signing George McCartney increasingly preferred in the starting line-up. Konchesky’s former manager at Charlton, Alan Curbishley, took over midway through the campaign and Konchesky was sent off in Curbishley’s second match in charge, a goalless draw at Fulham on 23rd December 2006. His final appearance for the club came in a 4-3 home defeat to Tottenham on 4th March 2007.

Konchesky signed for Fulham for a fee of £3.6m in July 2007, having scored two goals in 70 appearances for West Ham United. He scored the BBC’s Goal of the Month in January 2009 against his old club at Upton Park, a game which saw the Hammers triumph 3-1. Having appeared for Fulham in the Europa League Final against Atletico Madrid, the 29-year-old Konchesky followed manager Roy Hodgson to Anfield, signing for Liverpool for £3.7m on August transfer deadline day in 2010. He made his debut on 12th September 2010 in a 0-0 draw at Birmingham and made 18 appearances for the Reds, without scoring. His final appearance for Liverpool came in a 3-1 defeat at Blackburn on 5th January 2011.

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With Kenny Dalglish taking over as Liverpool manager, Konchesky joined Nottingham Forest on loan in January 2011 for the second half of the 2010/11 season. He joined Leicester in a permanent move at the end of that season. Konchesky spent the 2015/16 campaign on loan at QPR and joined Gillingham in a permanent move in the summer of 2016. He dropped down to the Isthmian League Premier Division to join Billericay Town in February 2017 and had a short spell with East Thurrock United of the National League South in the summer of 2018.

Now 38, Konchesky owns Konch’s Kafe in Brentwood and is a patron of Stacey’s Smiles, a charity which provides treats and wishes for children with neuroblastoma.

Referee

The referee on Monday will be Jonathan Moss. The Yorkshire-based official’s matches in charge of the Hammers last season were our 1-0 home win over Arsenal in January and our 4-3 home win over Huddersfield in March. He refereed our 1-0 win at Chelsea in November and, most recently, our 2-0 home defeat to Liverpool last month.

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Arguably the 49-year-old’s most controversial Hammers appointment was the 2-2 draw at Leicester in April 2016 when he sent off Jamie Vardy and awarded two penalties, the second arriving deep into stoppage time as the Foxes rescued a precious point.

Possible line-ups

Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp is without Nathaniel Clyne, Jordan Henderson and Xherdan Shaqiri. The Reds are unbeaten in seven league matches against West Ham, winning five and drawing two. Liverpool need five victories from their final 12 league fixtures to guarantee a first top-flight title since 1990.

West Ham boss David Moyes is without the injured Ryan Fredericks, Jack Wilshere and Andriy Yarmolenko. Moyes has not won any of his 15 matches as a manager against Liverpool at Anfield. Michail Antonio has scored in four of his five Premier League appearances against Liverpool.

Possible Liverpool XI: Alisson; Alexander-Arnold, Gomez, Van Dijk, Robertson; Keita, Fabinho, Wijnaldum; Salah, Firmino, Mane.

Possible West Ham United XI: Fabianski; Zabaleta, Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Masuaku; Rice, Soucek, Noble; Bowen, Antonio.

Enjoy the game – Up The Hammers!


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