Will This Be Curbs’ Starting Eleven?

I suspect the arrivals and departures at Upton Park haven’t quite finished yet. It looks as though the Nicky Shorey move is being revived and I would still bet money that Kieron Dyer will be here by the end of the week, with the Newcastle chairman having a bit of egg on his face. So, what do we think Alan Curbishley’s strongest Eleven is – and which team will he start with against Manchester City next Saturday. Here’s my guess…

Robert Green
George McCartney/Nicky Shorey
Matthew Upson
Anton Ferdinand
Lucas Neill
Mark Noble
Scott Parker (if fit) or Lee Bowyer
Freddie Ljuneberg
Luis Boa Morte
Dean Ashton
Craig Bellamy

Richard Wright
James Collins
Danny Gabbidon
Matthew Etherington
Bobby Zamora

What do you reckon?


61 Responses to Will This Be Curbs’ Starting Eleven?

  1. Daniel says:

    Poor Bobby – I really feel sorry for him. He has really tried to impress, and has always been one of the few that wears the club on his sleeve. Unfortunately, he keeps being overlooked as a viable option up front. Everytime a new striker comes in, he just gets pushed down the pecking order. Not saying he should start, but I’m not sure if he is getting a fair crack of the whip. Just a personal observation.
    Regarding Dyer, I think we could do much better for 8 or 9 million.

  2. George says:

    i think after the performances lately from anton firdinand collins or gabbidon will recieve the starting spot and i personaly feel that the gudjhonson deal is still well on and hopefully will go through

  3. George says:

    what do u think about the gudjhonson deal

  4. Andy says:

    Can’t someone bend Curbs ear to the fact that none of the fans want Dyer?
    Well, I haven’t seen one comment on the plus side from anyone.
    Some people have had their prayers answered by the Newcastle Chairman’s greed.
    Let’s move on.

  5. WHUFC says:

    What’s the deal with Etherington? Did he have some sort of fall out with Curbishley? I really would like to see him stick around and get back to the form he showed two seasons ago.

  6. Steve says:

    Not far off I suspect. Probably only replace Gabbs or Collins with Spector so that we’ve got full-back cover and not just centre halves on the bench.

  7. Kjell Fredell from Sweden says:

    Where is Pantsil ?
    He is much better than “many of us think” In fact a worldclass player

  8. Padrecoffey says:

    The central defenders are interesting. I’d like to see Collins given a break, when he plays he performs and looks hungry. It will also be good to see Gabbidon come back to full fitness, I’d imagine he’ll be pushing for a place very soon. We look stronger there than we have for a very longtime.

  9. ray stokes says:

    I just hope that Parker is fit then,rather him than Bowyer in the team! I also hope we can sign a left-back this week,whether it be Shorey or someone else.Don’t get me wrong,i like George McCartney,but we badly need cover there.

  10. Hayden says:

    I agree with you Iain. Not sure about the Dyer deal, will Egg and Curbs still want to do business with Newcastle after that slap in the face? Also they both seem to want to do right by the fans and I’d say the majority of fans don’t want him here. I would absolutely love it if we get Nicky Shorey.. Things look promising but I wonder why we haven’t got him sooner? Would have been nice to have a proper pre-season with all of our new signings. I think it would be an amazing signing so I’m trying not to get my hopes up at the moment. Back to Dyer – I think we should just forget that and pay whatever it takes for Giles Barnes from Derby. Absolute quality and he’s only going to get better and better! I am sure an 8/9 mil bid would turn Derby’s heads. Not sure about the starting two up front because of fitness but I think you are right – Deano / Bellamy. I can see them being an excellent partnership, I guess it all depends on if we bring in another striker (Gudjohnsen perhaps) but I sense Curbs might not see it as a matter of urgency if we have Deano, Bellamy, Bobby and Carlton (hmm). Hopefully Scott Parker will be fit but I imagine he’ll start on the bench regardless because of being out! I hope our priority is Nicky Shorey and it’s not just paper talk then as I say for me, in an ideal world we’d go for Barnes instead of Dyer but.. can’t see it happening. We’ll have to come up with something special for Gudjohsen he seems happy enough to stay at Barca. Counting down the days now!! (Come on Shorey!!)

  11. appyhammer says:

    i think you are right on the 1st 11 apart from gabs instead of ferdinand as he is more comfortable on the left side of the centre of defence. i must be one of the only people who wish to see dyer here, as he is another player who has a point to prove like bellers, upson parker. Also shouldn’t the clubs unofficial anthem be the ‘baad boys’ song out of the film

  12. NunheadHammer says:

    I thought that Matty Etherington looked a cut above his abject performance last season in yesterday’s Roma game. He certainly created space, and linked up well with McCartney and Ljuneberg. Boa Morte looked all at sea.

  13. Dave says:

    Ethers instead of Boa Morte. anyone who was at the boleyn on saturday will agree. boa morte was awful, he was a bit like beckham except that he couldnt pass.

    i’d also stick with bobby over bellamy in the meantime, he links in much better with the team.

  14. nose says:

    why would anyone want Anton Ferdinand in there team (Jar Jar Binks) hes woeful Collins proved at the end end of last season he deserves a place in our first team as for gabbidon im not too sure he is good but is he tall enough? And we need aleft winger Boa Morte is shite

  15. David King says:

    Very disappointed to see that nobody is giving McCartney a fair crack of the whip. As for your team Iain, i agree apart from Ferdinand, Boa Constrictor and Bowyer. Not sure who Ljuneberg is unless you meant Ljungberg. You know? I have a really morbid feeling about this season. And No. I dont want Dyer………nor do the Toon fans

  16. Joeeee says:

    Not sure about boa morte he is pants!! and it wont be anton centre back you have gabbidon and collins who are so much better than him!!!!

  17. nr2iron says:

    I am happy with what we have plus a decent left back,we can only play 11 and discontent amongst the squad is the last thibg we need after last season.

  18. dave m says:

    Gudjhonson would be a great buy, class player like lundberg. Left side should be the priority though, shorey and barnes would strengthen that area. Make no mistake Dyer can be an excellent player and a match winner worth a chance at £6mil but not £8mil, Curbs handling deal correctly. We seem to have a good spine and look strong on the right providing first choices stay fit. Agree about Paintsil could be worth another go looked good against Southend then again so would my mum. We should have a much better season but hate to say it we’re still a long way behind the gooners and the yids.

  19. TrevorH says:

    I agree with Daniel regarding Zamora. Now, he’s not my favourite player as I have always seen him as just short of Premiership quality. But nobody worked harder since Xmas for West Ham and for me, he was the Hammer of the Year. He also scores big goals from time to time which is the mark of a good striker. Sadly though, he will spend most of the season warming the bench. Team looks about right although the much improved McCartney is a bit of a weak link.

  20. carazyhorse says:

    would like to see shorey and gudjohnsen signed up that would make a few teams weary of us

  21. Lindsay Wesker says:

    Anton did not look confident on Saturday, I would rather Gabbidon or Collins with Upson.

    Chosing from the players actually signed: starting XI: Green, McCartney, Upson, Gabbidon, Neill, Ljungberg, Noble, Boa Morte, Etherington, Ashton and Bellamy

  22. WHUFC says:

    Yeah I don’t want Dyer either.

  23. Nick P says:


    Upson plays left side I think thats why Iain chose the squad that way although agree Gabbidon is better than Ferdinand.

    Also agree we can do better than injury prone bling king Dyer for 8 or 9 million, Gudjohnson would be a good signing but he would only really be competition for Ashton so not fussed whether we sign him or not. If we can sign Shorey then that would be great as he has potential to really strengthen left side.

  24. E1 says:

    spector might be a better option on the bench than collins as he can play left or right back. Bellemey could do a good job out on the left instead of boa after all Devo always played well there and ran defences ragged, leaving a place for bobby z or hopefully gudjohnson just gives us options on attack and the oposition defence something more to think about. Who knows I hope curbs is not to predictable though.

  25. john stone says:

    i no alot of u have said dyer would be a bad signing…but a fit dyer is probaly the best right winger or attacking midfielder in the country…hes pace his end product his goal scoring ability…i would love to see him at westham but not for more then 6m as he is injury prone

  26. Geoff says:

    http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=2dIb8roqOng – extended highlights from the west ham vs roma game if anyone’s interested. i didnt realise green had to do so much =P

  27. Geoff says:

    PS. Iain, I think you’ve got the line-up spot on mate. Jimmy Collins and Bobby Z will feel a bit hard done by, but competition is good for a squad.

    Mark Noble for England.

  28. Berkshire Hammer says:

    I think the Shorey deal will go through – he’s taken too long to reach an agreement with Reading – although Madjeski has a record of rejecting transfer requests (Sidwell) and Shorey has two years on his contract.
    Although Coppell does like Zamora and if we buy Gudjohnson then Bobby could be used in a swap deal for Shorey.
    Shorey is class and Reading will struggle without him and Sidwell.
    I’ve got one niggly concern about playing Ashton & Bellamy together – Ashton likes to play deep (a sort of Teddy Sheringham role) but Bellamy likes to come deep as well.
    I can see in my minds eye Ashton playing a ball behind the defence for Bellamy to run onto but ultimately we will need one forward to stay up front

  29. ny hammer says:

    Collins should be in the side , period. Just because we spent 5 million on Upson doesn t mean he should start . Ferdinand looks improved, but i still don t trust him, on or off the pitch. On recent evidence ,Etherington should get the nod over Boa. Also on recent evidence, Paintsil should be involved. He may lose passports , but he also may give us a midfield option we didn t realize we had.

  30. Hammerithome says:

    Spot on Berkshire Hammer. What you say re Bellamy/Ashton makes a lot of sense.
    I think Curbs will know this and will probably start with Zamora Bellamy AND Ashton.
    Two up front with one playing behind.Chelsea have palyed this way and done well so it can be done especially as we are at home. Different formations for different games is what will happen.
    I hope I’m wrong on my next point but I think we will miss Yossi this year. When he was missing last year we didn’t look the same team.As I said I hope I’m wrong.

  31. BAC says:

    Personally, I’d play Collins rather than Anton, and have Spector on the bench as versatile defensive cover. I’d also prefer Etherington to start on the left wing (don’t rate Boa Morte, especially defensively) and Zamora to lead the line, with Ashton.

    Now you know why I’m not a football manager!

    As for Dyer, he seems like a waste of money to me – high fee, high wages, high maintenance. Better blow the loot on Barnes from Derby, a star worth a punt on.

  32. Tony from Lanzarote says:

    A very good choice, but a couple of queries. I still feel we need another Striker back up. We are very thin if we get injuries or suspensions, and Cole is not up to the challenge even though Curbs has given him every chance. Its possible Dyer could be dual purpose – wide right or reserve striker – but only at £6 million. Dont like Bowyer, but he is a Curbs “Old Boy”. I would still have Mullins on bench instead . But Gudjohnson would be perfect – Striker + midfield back-up

  33. Stiffy says:

    I would have more faith in Gabbs more than Anton to be honest. And i think there will be plenty of injuies to allow the others to get in, no doubt uspon isnt going to start on saturday…

  34. Joe says:

    I don’t know why everyone rates shorey so highly. I reckon half of you haven’t seen him play and just want to sign him because you’ve heard others saying he’s good. Everyone knows that Italian defenders are the best around so why don’t we go into that market for a left-back. Man City were chasing a 21 year-old Italian Chiellini but it looks as if that won’t be happening so I thiink we should make a move for him. Also I think that we need to go back to the Ferdinand/Collins partnership because that was our best partnership last season.

  35. BrookingRules says:

    I still worry about down the left. McCartney is ok but I think Shorey will be a better bet. Chiellini would be fantastic but I can’t see it happenning. I know there’s a lot of Etherington fans, but I’m not one of them. We need a good left midfielder who can make things happen and get back when needed. Until Deano came on in the 2nd half, we were a bit short of ideas going forward. Gudjonsen would fit that bill.

  36. Alex says:

    i am alone in thinking boa morte is a great signing – i hope curbishly puts faith in him and gives him a long stint in the team. for me etherington is not strong or crafty enough

  37. ny hammer says:

    alex- i agree boa morte is bettter than many give him credit for. the problem is consistency. he can really contribute sometimes , and then other times he literally seems to just waste space. u don t know what u are going to get from him when he steps out on to the pitch.

  38. Steve says:

    Zamora is a better player than a lot of people think. The run in wasn’t all about Tevez. Bobby chipped in with some really crucial goals for the Hammers

    He should and deserves starting against Man C next Saturday.

    The last seven games which West Ham won (massive 6 points against The Arsenal and Everton):

    Zamora, Tevez(pen) – Blackburn
    Zamora, Tevez – Middleborough
    Zamora – Arsenal
    Zamora – everton
    Boa Morte, Benayoun, Harewood – Wigan
    Tevez(2), Noble = Bolton
    Tevez = Man U

  39. Weber says:

    Gabbidon instead of Anton

  40. Weber says:

    Oh, and where do you have Gudjohnsen and Dyer. They are totally West Ham players come Saturday..ü

  41. Ian the Hammer says:

    Have to feel sorry for Zamora, superb for us last season but feel we have to start with Bellamy. As for the back 4 – its GOT to be Collins. I felt he played as much a part in our survival last season as anybody else did.

  42. Darren says:

    I have to say that I think Dean Ashton is still a bit short of match games to start against Man City. Bobby Zamora has been a real star and definitely deserves his place in the starting line up. I think Deano will be on the bench.
    As for Dyer I think that a fit Dyer is a cracking prospect but theres about as much chance of that as nailing a jelly to the ceiling!! And after the slimy way that the Newcastle managment have conducted themselves then they can whistle!!
    Bring on Nicky Shorey though….another Hammer thats prepared to wear his heart on his sleeve.
    And if Eidur can be tempted I think we’ll be doing very nicely thank you very much!!!

  43. ny hammer says:

    it s a real tough situation to sort out what to do with zamora. i also feel he s underrated and that he contributed massively in the run-in. so if zamora starts ,who sits? you can t not play ashton. and at the same time, we do look brighter with bellamy than we ever dd with harewood or sheringham or cole. maybe the answer is to play 3 up front, as some people are suggesting.

  44. west ham wayne says:

    james collins has to start in front of ja ja binks the bloke is quality look how many games we won with jimmy c in the team ferdinand is living on his brothers name !

  45. Steve says:

    Wayne, don’t start that crap. I remember the same thing being said about Frank Lampard Jr (Living on his father’s name) and look where he is now.

    Anton is a decent centre back and is good enough to make the starting lineup. Yes James C played well towards the end of last season, but who was alongside him in defense? Maybe you believe James C did it, on his own?

    Let’s start the season supporting all our players and not getting personal. After all, they will respond better to positive noise from the fans.

  46. ny hammer says:

    Ferdinand looks a better player than he was 6 months ago, and if appearances mean anything, he seems to have his head a bit more together , i.r. focused on the job. having said that , i d still prefer to see collins in there, and if need be, have ferdinand sit to make way for collins. i think collins made big progress last season, and that he shud be rewarded for that, provided he keeps it up. perhaps i m not being entirely fair here, but i have nagging doubts about upson- not just his fitness. i hope he proves me wrong.

  47. Neil says:

    Nicky Shorey is a Reading player with two years left on his contract and is not for sale, nor had he put in a transfer request, nor is he a boyhood Hammer (he’s Arsenal). Can you lot give the Shorey stuff a rest please? You may well have tapped him up as is the usual WH style, but, but you won’t get him this summer. We’re keeping the lad, not least because he’s gone on record saying that he wants to stick with RFC for a while because of the way we stood by him when he nearly had his foot amputated. So no hope there unless you’re opaying really silly money – pick your own players to start the season, not someone else’. Rumour rating = about as likely as a Dale win in Norfolk North.

  48. Brooking knows best says:

    I reckon your team it there or there abouts Ian. I would like to make three points

    1, Please give Boa-Morte a chance, he was injured last year but played through and never shied away when all looked lost. Top player, gives 100% and not scared to put a foot in where it hurts.

    2, If Dyer was to sign, he would walk straight into the first X1 and if he stayed fit all season, even 8 million would not seen alot (big IF) Dyer is a great player and if he gets motivated top 6 here we come!


  49. Brooking knows best says:

    3, I really hope we do get Gudjonson and Shorey, but hope everyone wont be to disapointed if we don’t. Has anyone heard of any back-up plans if these two and Dyer signings dont come off?

  50. ny hammer says:

    neil- keep the rubbish in berkshire where it belongs

    1. so shorey has 2 years on his contract. who gives a toss?
    HE IS FOR SALE, as is any player , at the right price.

    2. blame gutter journalism like the daily mail for the rumors, don t blame it on west ham fans.

    3. nobody ever claimed he was a lifelong hammer fan. and if he was, so what? a lot of good that
    did paul konchesky.

    4. nobody ever claimed he put in a transfer request. the player himself refused a CONTRACT EXTENSION , in order to KEEP HIS OPTIONS OPEN. meaning he s not 100 pct committedto reading

    5. we don t need shorey in any case. if we get him , that s a bonus, if we don t ? BOTHERED.

    6. we haven t , nor do we “tap” players up. that s the speciality of our west end neigbours.

    7. start facing reality. which is that reading fc will not even finish top ten this season. get used to it. and mind your manners,

  51. Neil says:

    I’m well aware that a top ten isn’t likely for us this year – so be it. My club is my club.

    You don’t tap people up? Two words – Alan Pardew. Though we won out of that in the end by ditching the apprentice for the master.

    As for the gutter press. According to most WH fans on KUMB and elsewhere, Shorey has been having a medical every week for the last 4 years. You might at least appreciate that having another club’s fans going on about one of your players for four years gets a little bit annoying? As for being for sale, I noted he’s go for silly money, and that is not what WH are likely to offer. In a normale environment, he’s not for sale.

    And as for minding my manners, Mr Hammer, your post is the offensively written one, I didn’t have a massive pop at West Ham particularly and I even said please! Maybe you ought to take a more civil attitude to legitimately different views merely challenging the standard point -of- view taken here. Live with it. Had I wanted to be offensive I would have given voice to the opinion of most non-WH fans about the fat maradona saga… but that’s an argument for another day.

  52. ny hammer says:

    stop living in the past neil- alan pardew was last century. and u ended up getting promoted. so GET ON WITH It.

    your post wasn t offensive IN YOUR OPINION.

    your entitled yo your point of view , whether it s wrongheaded, narrowminded or otherwise. just keep it to yourself. or else express it a bit more politely

    or bugger off to your berkshire site.

    deal with it, cinderella.

  53. intolerant of berkshire says:

    give it a rest neil

    your chairman freely and willingly let pardew go.

    stop moaning and stop feeling sorry for yourself.

    the audience for your tripe is elsewhere. go find your detsiny

  54. highlife says:

    neiil- we don t give a toss whether u had a small,medium or massive pop. take care pop, whether it s decaf, skinny or tall ,where it belongs.

    in the championship. obnoxious ,rude timewaster

  55. flood plains says:

    neil, do u expect and OBE or and MBE because you were so original as not include an insult on the tevez situation?

    get a reality check. and stop moaning. your whinging makes u look championship

  56. lite fixture says:

    neill if u want to take a pop at west ham , small or large, do it on your own site, on your own time.

  57. heavy driving says:

    2 words for u neil


    thats tapping up.

    get some sense,if u kkow where to look for it.

  58. cold turkey says:

    it isn t what you say , but how u say it, neil

    not rocket science neil. really.

  59. cranberry sluice says:

    u still don t get it neil?

    we don t give a monkey s about “what most non-whu fans think of ” the tevez sage.

    we re not bothered.

    deal with it

  60. tiny tim says:

    so pardew was a reading fc player then in 2003 was he ,neil?

    that s clever.

  61. hammerology says:

    thats the point neil


    you just have a moan.

    when the transfer window is open, some of every club s players get linked with other clubs


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