Talking Point

Introducing the Rock

Carlos Alberto Sanchez Moreno is his full name. But when Carlos Sanchez arrived at Aston Villa he was billed simply as ‘The Rock’.

He had a tough time during two years at Villa and it is only his recent presence at the World Cup that has brought a largely forgotten former player back into the headlines.

A red card just 180 seconds into Colombia’s first group game reminded Villa fans of his rashness on the ball. When England took on Columbia it was Sanchez again in the headlines after fouled the England captain Harry Kane during a free-kick to be awarded a penalty against Columbia.

The former Aston Villa man rugby tackled Kane to floor and effectively handed the Spurs striker his sixth goal of the World Cup and the Golden Boot. Sanchez received death threats on social media from his own countrymen after they crashed out of the world cup. Police in Colombia launched an investigation into a series of online death threats made against Sánchez;

It was a chilling reminder of the murder of Andrés Escobar, who was gunned down days after scoring an own goal for Colombia at the 1994 World Cup, several social media users have targeted the former Aston Villa midfielder with vile messages threatening his life. One social media message read: “If Andrés Escobar was killed for scoring an own goal, then Carlos Sánchez should be murdered and his dead body pissed on,”

A carpenter’s son, Sanchez grew up in Quibdo, one of Colombia’s poorest cities, playing football in the streets of his Las Margaritas neighbourhood.

He was 14 years of age before he had the luxury of playing in football boots, having been selected for the Alexis Garcia academy at Medellin.Instead of joining a Colombian club, he moved to Uruguay, playing alongside Edinson Cavani at Danubio and then going to River Plate Montevideo. While there he won his first cap for Colombia before securing a move to Europe at the age of 21 in 2007, joining Valenciennes in France for a six-year spell.

He moved to Elche in Spain for the 2013-14 campaign and helped them stay in La Liga. Sanchez was signed by Paul Lambert in August 2014. It was to be Lambert’s final season at Aston Villa. By then the midfielder was 28. He arrived for a reported fee of £4.7 million, signing a four year contract.

In August 2016, after Villa’s relegation, Sánchez was loaned to Serie A club Fiorentina for a season.  The move was made permanent for £2.7m at the end of the season. In January 2018, Sánchez returned to La Liga on loan to RCD Espanyol for the remainder of the season. Transfer Market values him around £1.8m athough the Sun newspaper claim we could pay as much as £4m.

An aggressive and powerful footballer, Sanchez is active in midfield and can turn defence into attack. What makes Sanchez indispensable to his previous teams is his high-powered work-rate despite his age.

However he described as dangerous, impulsive and risky, all adjectives to describe Sanchez’s tackling. Another problem in Sanchez’s game is his wastefulness in possession.

In front of goal, Sanchez is limited with only seven goals to his name in his nine year career.

At 32 years of age brings a wealth of experience being an integral part of the Colombian national team and playing top-flight European football. Sanchez sacrifices for the team and would be a cheap squad addition to the squad.

Talking Point

Poll: Who should manage West Ham next season?

Who would you like to manage West Ham next season from this shortlist of five candidates?

David Moyes the former Everton, Manchester United and Sunderland manager comes to the end of his six-month contract with a win ratio of 26.32%. He fulfiled his target of keeping West Ham in the Premier League.

Rafa Benitez joined Newcastle after getting sacked by Real Madrid, he previously turned down West Ham in the eleventh hour to take the Spanish champions job. He has a 46.34% win ratio with the Magpies after 82 games in charge with 38 wins, 18 draws and 26 loses to his name.

Unai Emery has the best win ratio in Ligue 1 of any other PSG coach, triumphing in 77.78% of his league matches in charge. Only Blanc has recorded a ratio higher than 70 percent at the club previously. His contract with PSG finishes this summer.

Thomas Tuchel left Borussia Dortmund in 2017 with a record of 68 wins, 23 draws, and 17 defeats in 108 games, with an impressive win ratio of 62.96%.

Marco Silva the former Hull City Watford manager was sacked by the Hornets in January with the club citing the “unwarranted approach by a Premier League rival” that caused “significant deterioration in both focus and results to the point where the long-term future of Watford FC has been jeopardised” He managed a win ratio at Hull of 36.4% and just 30.8% at Watford from his 26 games in charge winning 8, drawing 5 and losing 13.

If you have trouble voting please click HERE

UPDATE: I see some people in the comments are trying to cause a stir by suggesting that Sean posted this poll without my permission. On the contrary. I saw it on C&H and emailed Sean to suggested he cross-posted it here. You’re welcome. ID

Talking Point

London Stadium Survey 2018 - The results

The results from the London Stadium survey are in with 4,396 match going supporters filling it in – we are able to publish today a true reflection of West Ham fan’s updated perception of the London Stadium, one year on from the last survey.

The survey was promoted by several West Ham websites, blogs and social media channels led by and

The board won’t like these results which suggest a significant worsening of attitudes towards the London Stadium by West Ham supporters.

After twenty months in the London Stadium do you believe that the move was a good idea?

Yes 22%
No 55%
Not sure 23%

West Ham’s Official Poll before the move showed that 85% backed the move, 10% wanted more information and 5% were against the move to Stratford. These latest results show a majority now think the move was a bad idea on hindsight.

When will the London stadium feel like our proper home?

It does already 6%
2-5 seasons 29%
6-10 seasons 16%
+10 seasons 8%
It never will 41%

There appears to shift that the London Stadium will never fill like our proper home, maybe it is generation thing with the new generation of supporters never knowing the difference in the future.

If you are a season ticket holder do you plan to renew for next season?

Already have 13%
Yes 26%
No 13%
Not sure 15%
Not a season ticket holder 27%
On the waiting list 6%

This indicates that around 66% of those filling out the survey claim they are season ticket holders which account for 2,850 supporters.

This means 550 (19%) say they have already renewed their season tickets, 1,142 (40%) plan to renew before the 1st June deadline, 502 (18%) say they will get up their season ticket at the end of this season, 656 (23%) are undecided at the moment

With 52,000 season ticket holders that means as many 9,360 will give up their seats if their answers are true and they follow through.

If you are a season ticket holder have you ever used ticket exchange functionality for matches you can’t make?

I never miss a game 18%
Yes sometimes 18%
Yes, every time I can’t go 7%
I prefer to sell it myself or forward to a friend or family 33%
Not worth it financially 18%
I prefer to leave my seat empty 6%

So this indicates only 25% have used Ticket exchange with a larger majority preferring to sell or give their tickets on themselves. One of the big reasons for so many empty seats at games.

What is your view on the general matchday atmosphere at the London Stadium in terms of volume and support for the team?

Excellent 3%
Good 24%
Average 48%
Poor 25%

What is your view on the quality of stewarding and security taking into account the last game you attended at the London Stadium?

Excellent 1%
Good 10%
Average 34%
Poor 55%

Perhaps not surprising considering the shambles at the West Ham v Burnley game.

What is your view on the quality, choice and price of food and drink within the London Stadium?

Excellent 1%
Good 12%
Average 42%
Poor 45%

What is your experience of the London Stadium sight lines and views of the pitch from your seat?

Excellent 13%
Good 35%
Average 28%
Poor 24%

What is your experience of travelling to and from the London Stadium taking into account walking, public transport or car?

Excellent 10%
Good 27%
Average 29%
Poor 34%

How do you rate your general match day experience at the London Stadium?

Excellent 3%
Good 25%
Average 43%
Poor 29%

West Ham have been criticised by some for not paying enough in the contribution to the transformation costs and running costs. Do you think West Ham should pay more?

Yes 46%
No 36%
Don’t know 18%.

Do you think West Ham will become a regular top six club within the next five years as a result of the move to the London Stadium?

Yes 3%
No 86%
Not sure 11%

Do you think West Ham will kick on to the next level and become a top four team within ten years as a result of the move to the London Stadium?

Yes 4%
No 83%
Not sure 13%

Do you think the West Ham board are doing a good job?

Excellent 1%
Good 4%
Average 26%
Poor 69%

How well does West Ham value you as a supporter and listen to fans concerns?

Excellent 1%
Good 5%
Average 30%
Poor 64%

Full results of this survey can be found HERE

These results together with 1,750 additional comments were sent to David Sullivan, David Gold and Karren Brady this morning.

A copy of the additional comments can be read HERE

Talking Point

Murdered West Ham season ticket holder to be remembered

Murdered West Ham Season Ticket Holder Sami Sidhom will be remembered this afternoon on the 18th-minute mark of the West Ham match with Manchester City with supporters inside the London Stadium joining in with one-minute applause. The club will put up a photo of young 18-year-old Sami on the big screens after consultation with his family but the applause will be fan-led initiative requested by his friends.

The Queen Mary law student from Forrest Gate was stabbed to death on his way home from the West Ham v Stoke City game on 16th April although the murder is not thought to be football related at this time. His father says Sami was not wearing his West Ham football scarf or shirt and was miles from the ground, so he doesn’t think the attack was football-related.

While the West Ham game kicks off there will also be a peace walk from the Fox and Hound pub in Forest Gate to Woolwich, organised by Sami’s neighbour, Annu Mayor. Those wishing to attend should meet at the pub at 2:15 pm on Sunday.

 Sami had been a season ticket holder in Sir Trevor Brooking upper stand block 217 since the Hammers moved to the former Olympic Stadium opened in the summer of 2016.

A 22-year-old was arrested last Monday on suspicion of the 18-year-old student’s murder but he has since been bailed to return, pending further enquiries, to a date in late May.

Officers are still asking for any witnesses or anyone with information to get in touch.

Det Chief Insp Mark Wrigly said: “I appeal to those people in the community who know what took place or who is responsible to come forward and give Sami’s family the justice they deserve.”

Anyone with information should call the incident room on 020 8345 3715 or via Twitter @MetCC.

Alternatively, you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Talking Point

2018 London Stadium Survey

Just over one year ago we ran the first London Stadium survey in March 2017.

Supported by a number of different West Ham websites, blogs, social media accounts including WHUISA, the survey was completed by 6,356 match going supporters.

The 2017 survey results were published last year at

The 2018 survey takes around three minutes to fill out and is designed only for those who have visited the London Stadium in person to sample one or more West Ham games this season. Please base your answers on your most recent visit to the stadium to recognise areas which may have been a problem at the beginning but have since improved.

We would like to encourage as many season ticket holders, claret members and general admission ticket supporters to answer this questionnaire as possible so please spread the word far and wide on forums and social media. This is designed to be an independent survey of supporters and not affiliated one particular West Ham site, blog or social media channel.

Fill in the 2018 London Stadium Survey HERE

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