Do the ‘Bare Bones’ Beckon?

Harry Redknapp’s standard excuse for losing a match has always been that he has been reduced to the bare bones through injury and suspension. In West Ham’s case, this may soon be a very realistic excuse for Zola to make.

With Carlton Cole missing two matches we may have to field a strikeforce of Di Michele and Tristan. With Behrami out for the rest of the season and Collison out for three weeks, and Boa Morte not yet fit, our midfield picks itself – Parker, Noble, Kovacs and Savio. But Parker is, I think, one booking away from a suspension and Noble picked up yet another booking at Wigan having only just returned from suspension.

Alan Curbishley, in one of his ‘helpful’ comments told a newspaper recently that he didn’t think West Ham’s squad was deep enough if they encountered a run of injuries. And it looks as if he had a point. Just at the time we are challenging for a European place, we face are starting to look very fragile in attack.

But the great thing is that I suspect Zola will be able to cope with all that’s thrown at him and pull a rabbit out of a hat. At least we won’t be reduced to playing Ian Pearce as a striker – which was Harry Redknapp’s solution, I seem to remember.


89 Responses to Do the ‘Bare Bones’ Beckon?

  1. Roymondo says:

    Somebody said that Parker will miss the next game as well but I’m not sure how true this is. If it’s against West Brom it shouldn’t be too much of a problem as Kovac can play the holding role. Boa Morte might be fit by then but I guess it would be a risk playing him from the start after several weeks out.
    I would play DDM up front on his own, simply because Tristan does nothing for me.
    Five in midfield, assuming Parker is out, could be a combination of Kovac, Noble, Spector, Savio, LBM/Lopez with Savio as the furthest forward but Noble and LBM/Lopez always able to get up in support as well. There’s also Stanislas to come into the equation, even if it’s for the last 20 minutes.
    Still, what do I know! I will trust Zola and clarke to sort it out

  2. devo says:

    I remember Pearce scoring a screamer at The Spuds,lets see some of these youngsters we all hearing about, west brom ain’t no push over i know but they no real madrid either

  3. Neil says:

    We have three matches in the next month, all against teams in the lower third of the table (two being in the bottom three). Whilst they may be playing for their league survival, we should be able to get a minimium of five points from these games.

    At the end of the month we should have Collison \ Dyer \ Boa Morte all back in contention and challenging for a place in the team.

    Come it wouldn’t be West ham without some kind of “drama”.

  4. iron man says:

    I think Dixon might get a run before the end of the season. He’s supposed to be a good striker but might not get his fitness. Carlton is out for two games but he’s been suffering a bit lately so he should come back nice and fresh for the last eight games. He will back for Sunderland and the Spuds games the latter would be very nice to get a result. Savio should get a start soon with West Brom coming up that should be an ideal game. Without Cole the whole team will have to work hard together and try to allow some of the midfield to get further forward. Kovacs seems to be improving and it would be nice to see him getting on the end of a few corners. Plus what a great team goal at Wigan, lovely stuff five or six passes then in the back of the net. More of the same please!!!COYI!!!

  5. Roy says:

    Roymondo. Good post, let’s leave it GZ and SC to sort it out. Stanislas? yeah, give him a run out. Thought he was terrific at Southend recently. Tristan? Not really the answer is he? Nobody’s screaming for Sears to come into the team any more I see.

  6. Paul M says:

    Josh Payne and Junior Stanislas have both been on the bench recently, if they weren’t ready they would not have been there. Also up front we can offer, Zavon Hines and Bajnet a chance along with Freddie of course.
    Yes all young but also all good players.

    Spector can also fill in across the middle. Any news on Dyer!!! we could sure do with him now.

  7. COYI says:

    Ian Pearce as Striker….that brought back memories – was it against Arsenal? – and wasn’t it that **** Roeder and not Harry??

    also…personally I’m really looking forward to bare bones because I really want to see payne, stanislas, n’gala and spence coing throu – let alone dixon and sears – thats our strength in depth..

  8. Eddie Chappers says:

    Dyer resumes training on Monday so may come into contention for the Blackburn game possibly- I think sitting him behind DiMichele might work? Sears deserves another run out though not upfront on his own, he is no target man!

  9. Kim says:

    I am just pleased that we have a break until 16 March so they can plan and try out the different formations. In Zola and Clarke we trust. Think it might be a good idea to send our Scotty for a bit of anger management training as we really, really need him. Loving his passion but we need him to keep a level head. Can Clarke also have a word with Neill. How he wasn’t sent off the other night is a miracle.

  10. chris says:

    Oh dear.

  11. chris says:

    Until people are back, savio kovac noble, parker on the right,dont like noble out-wide hes got no pace. Or boa morte parker kovac savio.
    Why does cole miss 2 games?
    Thought 2 yellow red was 1 game.

  12. Matt says:

    let’s get lopez more involved, he was our best player in the carling cup against watford and aint done much since!

    give him a run on the left, see if him and illunga work well with them both being left footed and like to get forward

    zola and clarke are pretty tuned so they’ll do whats best!!

    think cole gets 2games cos its his 2nd red card this season chris

  13. Neil says:

    Chris – It’s Cole’s second red card of the season. Hence, the two match ban.

  14. supernumbersix says:

    Let’s see what Stanislas and Payne can do. Give Savio a start.

  15. Big Casino says:

    Tristan has a groin injury.

    I know Savio is perhaps best in midfield, either wide left or behind the front two – but I would actually start him up front with Di Michele for WBA if Tristan, Boa and Dyer are unavailable for the game.

    And then in midfield I’d gamble with Payne or Stanislas… probably Stanislas…. in place of Collison. Stanislas is a proper set piece expert. Free kicks and corners, he is pwopa naughty. I believe he scored at least two direct free kicks whilst at Southend and set up a few others from corners.




    Di Michele

  16. hammeredCalv says:

    I dont think there is to much to worry about, 3 pts away from prem survival, possible chance of european football, quality youngsters comming through, linked to great young signings in the summer,potential new owners, it just gets better and better ! Finally our beloved club is going places. COYI !!!!!!!!!!!

  17. Michael Szeder says:

    Think our squad can cope to be honest. Both spector and lopez can play in midfield if desparate. Its not as if we don’t have any options at all…… Scotty parker has been superb, he will carry anyone in tht midfield.


    Neill Upson Tomkins Ilunga

    Noble Kovac Parker Lopez

    Savio Di Michele

    job done vs West Brom.

  18. James says:

    I think we will be alright, I think we could put any of our player out of position if the need arrises!! It is all about the mentality for success and at the moment and I hope till the end of the season our players have that!!

    The funny thing is that Aaron Lennon thinks that the Spuds can get 7th in the table by the end of the season, I suppose they need some kind of goal bless em, but I think prem survival is there most concern. If 7th place is what Mr Lennon needs then I am sure Zola would love to have him in our squad!! COYI

  19. chris says:

    Of course thanks neil.

  20. chris says:

    Funny coz my spud inlaws still reckon they will finish above us,I took £100 bet with them a few weeks back
    I’m beginning to worry now!!!!!!!!!

  21. chris says:

    Is lopez ready then,I heard he had a couple of decent res’es games,but someone told me his slow.

  22. James says:

    Chris, Don’t worry just yet the Spuds still have a shocking defence and after watching the highlights from the Spuds – Boro game, Boro were unlucky to score at least five goals!!

    I predict 10th place for the spuds at best or a strong case for relegation,For which they deserve!!

  23. hammertime says:

    savio and ddm up front is too lightweight, i wouldnt mind seeing collins do a pearcey and play as the big man but he too is injured. i seem to remember pearce getting injured whilst up front and going on to play a blinder! hero.

  24. IoDHammer says:

    Wow Chris you are so negative! Relax!

  25. Hammeriron says:

    I think we will be fine unlike Curbs Zola try’s to work with our youth team and so far so good.

  26. Tuckshop says:

    Does anyone know if we would be able to recall any loan outs if required?

  27. onechristiandailly says:

    I seem to recall a John Lyall team with five centre-backs on the field – Alvin Martin and Tiony Gale at centre-back, Bonzo at right-back, Gary Strodder in centre midfield and Paul Hilton up front. Needless to say, we were shit.

  28. happyhammer says:

    Tuckshop- who u alluding to?? Faubert?? I wish we could, i think he is a very good player. U can just watch him for a few mins and tell even if he isnt making a big impact. I wouldn’t talk about a depleted squad people, we will probably get 2-3 back by WBA and we have many different options we can take to put the team together, its just about being smart and creative!!

  29. djclipz says:

    This is where the team fully plays as a team together, covering for what we haven’t got! The passion will bring us through alone!! Plus fringe players will see it as there chance, its a must for them to perform, so it will be good to see the reaction from the lads in the next few games!!

  30. Jolly says:

    Ian Pearce’s goal against the spuds…….that takes me back – i was at that game sitting in with the Tottscum season ticket holders.
    1-0 down, 5 miutes to play and Pearce hit a 25 yrder half volley from a headed out corner, straight into the top corner!!!!!
    It took all my resolve to sit on my hands and say nowt…….
    Rememer all – if Alvin Martin can score a hat-trick there’s hope yet for Diego Tristan….probably?!?!?

  31. Dave Hall says:

    Personally Im not that worried. Collisons injury is not as bad as they thought it was so he won’t miss the rest of the season. We do have Savio, Sears, Lopez etc. And to be honest a fair few of how goals have come from midfield. We’ll be ok and we are sitting with enough points and some more to come before end of season to see us safe. I don’t care where spurs finish, although in the bottom three would be nice, but won’t happen in my opnion.

  32. E1 says:

    Zola and Clarke have 10 day’s to work on it and only once ( boro ) got it wrong, SO, ALWAY’S LOOK ON THE BRIGHT SIDE OF LIFE, COOOOOOOOOOOOOM ONNNN YUOOOOOO IROOOOOOOOOOOONS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  33. phil says:

    I thoguht Lopez and Spector have looked good when they’ve come in. Both give width and help out the full backs. There does seem to be a consistant pattern and style of play that the whole squad is familiar and happy with, meaning that changes to the personnel have been fairly easy.
    Glad to see that Collison’s injury is a bit less serious than first thought aswell.

  34. upton spark says:

    E1 please stop shouting,THANKS!!
    As for Zola he is a good manager and could even prove to be a great manager given time.
    Yes,it’s true we are in the poo re injuries at this moment in time,but please have faith in our manager as I’m sure he will cope with the presure and come out the other side.
    Let’s all be positive please.

  35. Darren says:

    It was worse than Ian Pearce, it was Colin Foster. Redknapp subsequently apologised in a fanzine interview saying it seemed like a good idea at the time. Much like Boogers, I suppose. And Tristan. I’ve seen milk turn quicker etc

  36. simon says:

    Thing is guy Zola and Clarke have the team playing as a unit and playing a certain way… I pretty sure they would work in training on bringing anybody into the team who can slot in and do the job of whoever he is replacing.

    Not worried about midfield, only thing that worries me is goals…as much improved as CC is he’s not a first choice striker in my opinion.

  37. Rob says:

    thank god tristan is out of contention!

  38. jeffreybubbles says:

    Does any body remember when we did’nt lose a london derby all year,until end of season we had to play arsenal at home without a single defender in the team so we had four mids in defence,& still should’ve won until the ref sent off a west ham player for protesting that arsenal player had handled to control ball whilst comparison our problems now dont seem too bad.can’t remember the final score or players names sorry for vagueness.

  39. jeffreybubbles says:

    Re london derby i’m fairly sure Di Canio had scored an early goal for the hammers.

  40. DevoDevo says:

    Chubby Neill was awful again against Wigan and should have walked. As already mentioned, the good news is that Tristan is unavailable. Somoene has already correctly identified that Noble can’t play on the flanks, so I would do the following against the Baggies:




    Noble (free role)

    Di Michele

    Personally, I think it’s great to have the youngsters on the bench and hopefully a few more will get the chance before the season is out.

  41. clack says:

    It was Roeder who played Ian Pearce up front, not Harry.

    I think there’s a small error on another of your threads, Iain, when you say 7th spot will qualify for Europa Cup if one of top 4 wins FA Cup. It’s actually if one of top 6 wins FA Cup, which is very likely considering they make up 4 of the last 8 left in the competition.

    I believe I am right in saying that the FA Cup runners up aren=t given a European place anymore (as we were in 06), but it goes to the next league team if Cup winners already in Europe?

  42. DevoDevo says:

    Don’t hold your breath. If we qualify for Europe some scousers will probably riot abroad and get us all banned again. 😦

  43. CC says:

    So whats next for Freddie Sears lads? I commented about 3 months ago he always seemed disinterested when he came on, not energetic enought for me…at 18/19 I thought he should have been busting a gut every moment on the pitch but he never seemed to do. Now, we’re at bare bones up front and nobody seems to want him in.. so whats the scoop? Is he not good enough? Too young? Does he need to go out on loan for 12 months to get some experience (or knowlegde of what it could be like if he don’t get his finger out).

    By the way, not worried about W Brom, they are playing shockin right now, so no matter what Zola/Clarke do, we should get the points… for me, Savio and DDM up front, any other 9 after that should be dandio…

  44. irontc says:



  45. the Headmaster says:

    Good question CC. I think that on loan is probably a good call although I am now starting to become worried by his size and strength. His showing up at Boro when Hoof (or whatever the big lump is called) had Sears well and truly in his pocket was embarrassing. To compensate for that he needs to either develop the ability to make many more clever and darting runs or lightening pace. Neither of these commodoties are showing themselves thus far. Does he have the talent to make it at this level?

  46. Kim says:

    I am as fed up with the anti Sears thoughts as I was about him being the next Messiah. He should have been out on loan this season. Yes he is slight but so is Defoe – the first time I saw Defoe I thought they had forgotten to escort one of the mascots off the field. Sears said in an interview earlier this season that he had asked to go on loan but was told he was going nowhere. I hope he can make it but he needs to get some games under his belt to find out. Best for the lad and us.

  47. chris says:

    Sears this Sears that,blah blah blah,he should do this he needs this.

  48. SJ Chandos says:

    Chris, that is a very extreme and unfair statement. Sears is a very promising young player, but the fact is that player development is not a linear, rising process; rather it rises, dips and sometimes stalls for a while. Sears is in a dip this season, he is learning some hard lessons and finding the step up difficult. However, that does not mean that his is a lost cause.

    We need to continue developing him, perhaps arranging a Championship loan next season if he needs it. I am pretty confident that he will be an important player for us eventually, but his development is going to take longer than say Collison or Noble. Just show some patience.

    Regardless, there is a long way to go before the club writes off Freddie Sears. And if they do it will not be on a whim, but after he has been given every opportunity to fulfill his potential.

    On player form, it was really good to see Noble back to something like his best. Personally, I think that he needed to build up his fitness and just have a rest. Noble has played a hell of a lot of football for a 20/21 year old and he was looking a bit jaded. But against Wigan he looked like the player that we all know he is!

  49. emlyn says:

    50% sure Pearce got a hat-trick against leeds!

  50. SJ Chandos says:

    So the Sportsmail’s campaign against bad tackles continues! Hypocrisy, thy name is Sportsmail (and your middle name is Sheffield Utd)! In fact is there a relationship between the two? Is Sportsmail’s ongoing campaign against West Ham a product of links between the paper and Sheffield Utd? I wonder?

    Sportsmail are incredible. Their columnist, Des Kelly, wrote that about ‘West Ham’s ugly win’ against Wigan!!!! There was nothing ugly about the winning goal, I think it was a thing of beauty, a footballing work of art. The movement, passing and finishing was absolutely top draw. The only problem, for some people, seems to be that it was not scored by Chelski or Man Utd!

    Sportsmail is a very bad newspaper at all levels, their biased and vindictive coverage is a disgrace and West Ham fans should organise a boycott of the paper.

  51. Goatygav says:

    Where’s Graybo?

  52. SJ Chandos says:

    Have West Ham appealed against Cole’s red card?

    This Attwell character is obviously not ready to referee at the top levels. Moreover, with the money involved in european qualification, relegation and promotion the likes of Attwell are a liability that football clubs cannot afford.

    Relegate him to the Conference and Division 1 & 2 lists and let him learn to referee properly!

  53. Stephen says:

    Morning all, if anyone missed the hour long Tony Carr interview on talksport it’s downloadable through Brilliant insight to our academy and makes you feel incredibly proud to be a Hammer knowing we have probably the best youth set-up in the country. Long may it continue.
    I only wish we could hold onto all our talent and win something! Fortunes always hiding as we say.

  54. SJ Chandos says:

    Apparently Terry Dixon is in training and has not experienced any problems. Hopefully, that includes testing the knee with the twists and turns that put real pressure on a players knees.

    There will probably still be a question mark until he has played two or three reserve matches and has no adverse reaction. We need to watch his progress with real interest.

    It is good news on Collison’s knee strain and hopefully he will be back in two weeks. It is a big ask to accommodate the loss of both him and Berhami, so that is excellent. Even Berhami could be back in a month, so perhaps it is not the old injury jinx reasserting itself!

    I agree that we can probably accommodate the loss of Cole and Collison against WBA. The international break has fell just right for us this time.

    We need a more offensive line up against WBA, with a possible start for Nsereko and Lopez. I think this would be a good match to partner Illunga and Lopez on the left and play Nsereko in a free role behind the two strikers. I would like to see how Nsereko performs in that role and if it does not work then he can be moved to the left. However, LBM is coming back to fitness and Zola seems to rate him, so do not be surprised if he is played on the left of midfield.

    And what about Dyer? We really need him back in contention now. He would give us extra options on the right and in the hole, behind the strikers, or even playing as a striker. I am not sure if he will be ready for the WBA match?

    The Cole suspension and Tristan injury has really exposed our lack of depth in the striking department. We may need to partner Sears and Di Michele together up front? But that will a bit of a light weight partnership and it will really dictate how we approach the game. Alternatively, give Banjer a debut, why not? He should at least have a place on the bench, along with Stanislaus and Payne.

  55. DevoDevo says:

    Kim is correct, Sears should have gone out on loan earlier in the season.

    People foregt that alongside Bellamy earlier in the season he was linking up well and making intelligent runs. I don’t think he has learnt how to play off Cole yet, but as poor as he was as Boro, to play at this level after so little competitive football is a big ask.

    I certainly haven’t ruled him out as being a top player yet but with Cole now looking the best “big” forward England has (incredible transition)and the possible return (no laughing at the back E1) of Ashton, Dyer & Dixon – notwithstanding the interest in foreign forwards – Sears’ opportunities will be severely limited. One must also recall that Tony Cottee broke into the side at 17!

    Apart from the flowing football, the biggest thing I have noticed under the Zola/Clarke stewardship is the improvement in so many players:

    Green – As good as Green was in the past his weakness was dealing with crosses and commanding the area. Recently he has done both with aplomb and it’s no coincidence that he is electing to catch rather than punch now.

    Spector – I like what I have seen with him in the few minutes he has been on the pitch. Every club needs a player like him and his distribution is much better than Mullins, his predecessor.

    Upson – Has grown into an established international player.

    Ilunga – Best left back we have had since Dicks.

    Parker – has always been a decent if unspectacular player. Now the driving force of the team. I said weeks ago that he could become a legend in the mould of Billy Bonds if he stayed. So far he is going the right way. England beckons.

    Cole – The most incedible transition in a player I have witnessed in such a short time. Looks like his found his spiritual home at long last.

    Finally, Kovac reminds me of a Dider Hamman, anyone else agree?

  56. colney says:

    ian we have a new famous hammer !!! i have a strange taste in music ie thrash metal and on my facebook im friends with scott ian lead guitar of anthrax,he was drinking with iron maiden and they have converted him to being one of us!!!! ps hes a legend in the metal world so im sure he should be added?

  57. E1 says:

    Sears has got something and I am sure the club know what to do with him, I am suprised he’s not gone on loan Defoe was on loan for quite sometime and he turned out ok, It could happen next season, subject to the shape of the squad pre season.
    some take longer than others to develope.

  58. E1 says:

    DevoDevo stop it you are killing me HA HA HA HA HE HE HE HE Ashton HA HA HE HE.
    I do agree with all your other comments I Really think spector is an important squad member and so far Kovac is looking the part. COLE IS GREAT one because he has done so well and he could make it hard for Ashton to get back in, not that he would be in long LOL

  59. DevoDevo says:

    If Cole continue to finish as he did against Wigan, Ashton will be second choice anyway. 🙂

  60. Colm says:

    E1 was are you talking about defoe didnt turn out ok at all!!! He plays for smelly spurs…….

  61. Colm says:

    Oops, I mean,”E1 WHAT are you talking about”…… word………how embarrassing……my perfectly good spurs/Defoe joke..,RUINED!!!!

  62. chris says:

    S j Chandos I’m sorry but Sears has not shown me anything to suggest that he will make it at this level,
    lets look at assets.
    1.Strengh….. Does not have any strengh on the ball.
    2.Goal threat, fox in the box?…..Never gets in scoring positions.
    3.pace…..Everyone seems to think hes Lighting quick…no hes not.
    4.Threat in the air…..No

    All I have seen Sears do (at moment)
    Is diagonal run in the channels,cutting him self off.

  63. chris says:

    S J Chandos you cant be serious about Dyer.
    this guy will never make it so you and everyone else should not pin their hopes on him, he is nicking a living!!!!!!!!!

  64. chris says:

    With all due respect.

  65. CC says:

    My issue with Freddie is two-fold.

    1) Like I said earlier, its either attitude or fitness preventing him from busting his ass when he plays. I’d love to see stats comparing him to Behrami, Collison, Cole.. even DDM when he plays crap, he runs his b@lls off covering back.

    2) If ever a style of football would suit him, its ours, right now. We’re no longer a team that just humps it forward and hopes for the best. So, given his size and physique, if he can’t fit in with this team right now, then he could struggle everywhere (including on loan to a lower league team that would kick lumps out of him).

    Of the two, I’d be far more concerned about number 1, cos all players develop differently at different ages.. and he obviously has heaps of talent. But… the right attitude is something you’re either born with… or not.

    Am I being harsh? Anyone out there seen him playing a few times in the reserves and can put me right? Cos I’d love to be wrong about this…

  66. lotf says:

    i’ve only really seen of sears in the prem games against blackburn and everton. In the blackburn game he scored which was obviously fantastic. In the everton game he was embarassing jagielka time after time. The boy has potential, thats for sure.

    He was also at one point scoring for fun in the reserves which has got to say something. I think a loan might suit him so he can get some more competitive play – reserve games always have that ‘friendly’ feel to them and arent as tough or hard-fought as proper competitive games.

    Our academy has produced class player after class player. Freddie wouldnt be in the first team squad if ‘people’ didnt think he had it in him. ‘People’ that know a lot more about football and the potential in young talent than anyone posting on here does.

  67. Delmo says:

    Just something thought you might want to watch on Monday, the prog is hosted by Jeff Steling.

    And to be honest never really heard Parks in an interview so could be intresting.

    10.00pm, Monday, March 9, Sky Sports 1
    Guests: Frank McAvennie, Phil Parkes and Tony Gale
    West Ham were title contenders during the 1985-86 season, eventually finishing third, four points behind Champions Liverpool with Frank McAvennie scoring 26 goals.

  68. chris says:


  69. Eddie Chappers says:

    I honestly think that Sears hasn’t gone out on loan as Zola/ Clarke/ Carr don’t believe that it will assist his development- we have to trust their judgement even though I agree with the likes of Kim above that this would have been the obvious choice for me too in terms of bringing him on as a player. I also agree with other posts that upper body strength is an issue that needs addressing though having said that he is still developing physically and will carry on doing so until circa 21 years of age.

    Chris- I understand your viewpoint and I agree with many of the negatives levelled at Sears though I also think that a young player to have proven himself at under-18 and reserve level as he has done (around 28 goals last season across both levels??) deserves a bit of faith from us lot, granted though his performances thus far this season don’t really merit much.

  70. chris says:

    Point taken eddie but sorry I just dont see it.
    If you have seen dixon play you would no what I mean.
    Sears would be showing something by now.
    Although it could be physcological, why he cant take res’es form into the first.

  71. Stelios J says:

    I think, re Parker, that there’s a yellow card amnesty from hereon in, and a player has to reach 10 yellow cards before a suspension “kicks” in Very thankful for one of Atwell’s better decisions last Wednesday, i.e not to send Scott of, which, given his card tricks to that point, he could easily have done!

  72. SJ Chandos says:

    Chris, I am aways serious when I talk about our beloved Hammers! lol. Dyer is class and we need him available for selection. I understand your misgivings about his fitness record, but hopefully he will come back successfully.

    On Sears, it is far too early to write him off like that in my opinion. As I said, players develop at different rates. It may be that he does not make it in the end, but the fact is that the club need to explore all possible options with him before they make a decision.

  73. mokumhammer says:

    But Sears is only one of a half dozen who’s careers (@ whufc is concerned) must seriously be considered this summer. Same is true of Widdowson, Kyel Reid, Stanisas, Stokes & n’ Gala. I can’t believe Bowyer, Quashie, Davenport & Faubert will be welcomed back in May either. And again can we offload players like Boa Morte & Gabbidon.

    I’ve listed TWELVE players who we could miss, who don’t seriously feature in our future, & I’m not entirely sure would sent us to ‘bare bones’ – a couple of inspiring signings in the summer, & our future looks rosy! COYI

  74. E1 says:

    mokumhammer : Who are your 12 ?

  75. E1 says:

    As I have said before zola’s plan is a squad of 25 made up of 3 goal keepers and 22 outfield players.
    Based on that we have if we include the fringe youngsters then we have far to many players and in order for any new faces to come in zola ,clarke etc will have a lot of decisions to make and I think we see a lot of the younger players on loan in order to develope and keep them,we do, at the moment have at least 10 that could be playing 1st team football over the next 2 seasons and some will fall by the way side. This along with senior players being off loaded and loans ending or becoming preminant will all take time, don’t think there will be to many changes next season.

  76. mokumhammer says:

    E.1 – the post was about ‘bare bones’. I listed 12 players who questionably (is that a word?!) we don’t need/wont feature/shouldn’t feature in our future. I’m sure Zola/Clarke know we are VERY weak up front & will rectify the problem best they can, with what’s on offer. Trimming the squad is one of the best statements Zola has come up with.

  77. E1 says:

    mokumhammer : I understand, my point was that there are a lot more than 12 and they will have to go before anymore come in.

  78. E1 says:

    Just looking at so called experienced players that we can do without I’ve got 12
    Ashton Gabbidon dyer faubert walker tristan bowyer quasie davenport then you have to look at neil and lbm.If this lot go then we can continue to bring through the youngsters and bolster the squad with quality and reliability IMHO

  79. Goatygav… many thanks for asking… I left the country for seven days (ski trip to Austria) and we picked up two vital wins… I must do it more often!!!

    I was in football limbo to some extent because I wanted to have a break from the computer, but CNN News gave me the Man City result and I texted a Wigan-supporter friend (who was in Athens airport) to find out about our ‘ugly’ win in midweek.

    So, two great results but at a high price, it would appear. Worst news has to be re Behrami.

    Missed you guys (well, a bit) but it was lovely to have a whole week away from the keyboard and monitor 😉 I heartily recommend it.

  80. Rob says:

    we do need some players in the summer, and i would look seriously at burnleys blake and eagles. we could get them both for a bargain if burnley dont come up and im not sure if you’ve seen them but both look premiership class.

    we will be fine for the rest of this year, and as the next 3 games are winnable we could cement 7th very soon

  81. Paul M says:

    How about trying to buy Thierry Henry in the summer? Proven quality, goal scorer, prem & european experience and would be great for the younger players to learn from.

    Would still command a fair price to buy him (10m?)but looking at any alternatives, you would need to spend more on a younger player with the same qualities or take a gamble on an ‘up and coming’forward.

    Come on fellas, who would you like up front for next year?


  82. Dujon says:

    Carloz Tevez. we all know he loves Westham.

    I dare say Henry would cost more than 10m. 15 might secure his services. I’d love to have him here, but his arrival would have to mean a successful sale of the club.

    Zavon Hines, Terry Dixon, Freddie Sears, Carlton Cole, Dean Ashton, Boe. it’s mainly due to injuries that we’re struggling for strike options. Carlton and Ashton are world class strikers, so i wouldn’t mind having both of them for the season as opposed to a new buy.

  83. Paul M says:

    Dujon- If we are to push on from this season we need a proven quality goal machine, a creative midfielder and a right back.
    Henry, Pranjic, & Glen Johnson would do me fine.
    Sears – not ready
    Dixon – jury still out on his injury
    Hines – another youngster, not ready yet
    Cole – been a reveltion, hope he can repeat it
    Ashton – love him if he can get/stay fit
    Boa – going in the summer , SURELY
    Di Mic – squad player at best
    Tristan – can’t stop laughing now, tata mate!!

    I see we are also looking at more young players from Italy. Ayub Daud (striker) & Andrea Mei (Right back). Anyone know anything about them?

  84. Paul M says:

    Dujon – Tevez yes please !!! but wher will we find £30mil+ for him, keep dreaming on that one.

  85. Dujon says:

    haven’t you heard, he is a free transfer to westham *wink*.

    I’m also interested in the italian prospects that have been in the rumors scene.

    I honestly believe our midfield department is fine the way is. Collison, Behrami, Parker, Noble, Stanislas, Savio, Lopez and more. Those last three might me new to the first team scene (maybe not savio, he’s played some games and his transfer fee summed up zola’s ambitions to start him), but they have all been consistent performers to date and i undoubtedly believe they will step up. I’m still counting down till the day Savio scores his first goal. I’m hoping a 30 metre wonder-strike, so the public can get to know a future super-star.

  86. DevoDevo says:

    Glen Johnson would fit beautifully into the present system, he would come at a price, though. It’s a shame Neill didn’t get sent off for his challenge on Cattermole. This would have given a chance for Spector to show what he can do. He would certainly offer some pace and energy down the right.

    Dyer is back in training so may even make the bench for West Brom, in which case, we would have a viable alternative if things weren’t going too well.

    As for next season; I am very impressed with the Pole we have been linked with, but I think Zola will keep his options open until he can ascertain the fitness of Deano and Dixon.

    We’re not too far away from having an extremely talented squad. However, a word of warning. When we finished 3rd in 86, the players thought all they had to do was turn up for the next season and the success would continue. It doesn’t work like that. Success has to be earned through hard work.

  87. thegeneralmuz says:

    great comment devo wishing our own players be sent off when we are struggling with injuries and suspensions, not the biggest fan of neills but think he has shown recently he can be useful!

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