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'If It's Football, It's Vital'

A Hammers View On Villa Visit

1) So how has your season been so far?

After the optimism of 2005-06; a top half finish and a Cup final on our return to the top flight, the early season arrival of two international superstars... it's gone a little downhill. We're in the bottom 3, we've no confidence, we haven't won a game since circa 1946 and the injury list gets longer and longer - populated mainly by defenders (aside from our best two forwards - Ashton & Tevez). We have an almighty battle on our hands to stay in this division.

2) Are you happy with your manager swap and do you think it was right for Pardew to leave? Is Curbs the man to take you forward?

I was disgusted by Pardew's sacking. He'd earnt the right to be our manager & should've been allowed the January pot of gold. Once he was gone, Curbishley was probably the right choice. I like to be positive and back whoever the manager is (I stuck up for Roeder for a while - he was clueless) but Curbs has yet to impress me. Still his track record is more than adequate & if we stay up then he's in a good position with our new money.

3) We've both seen takeovers this season, are your guys walking the walk at the moment, you happy with the changes?

Well, Terrence Brown was not too popular, therefore not a hard act to follow. Magnusson has put his money where his mouth is and most of the fans seem quite happy but... I'm not sure. As mentioned, I thought the Pardew sacking was wrong. I also think he enjoys the limelight a bit too much. Really, though, it's far too early to judge. After 10 managers in 100 years, I'll be gutted if he starts chopping and changing like Fat Freddie at Newcastle.

4) What is it like to know that you don't wear the real Claret and Blue and in fact wear pink and blue? ;-))

You'd best come and ask an east end pub full of Hammers' fans next time you're down...

5) Will the Hammers survive this season and how far realistically can West Ham go and what do you expect of them in the next five years?

The million dollar question. It's lucky Wigan are rubbish at the moment. We can have hope if not expectation.

The medium term future depends on survival - if we stay up then having some cash will be a novel experience. Perhaps we could achieve midtable obscurity with the odd (brief) foray into Europe. If we go down, who knows?

6) Who do you fear in the Villa team?

I think it was inconsiderate of you to go out and buy 2 decent forwards prior to playing against us. Why not give them a rest this week; it's only West Ham after all...

7) Who should we fear in the Hammers team?

New striker Kepa Blanco is averaging a goal a game... in the same way Ashley Young is for you! Seriously? Nobody on current form. Yossi Benayoun is our creative hope, but he's been off form this season. I think Sheringham is possibly still our best fit striker but Curbs doesn't seem to fancy him. Possibly Marlon Harewood; hasn't he got some previous with your lot? Upson, being an ex-Birmingham player, might score I suppose. I really cannot scrape the barrel any more.

8) If you could have one of our players, who would it be and who would you send us in exchange?

Well, we tried to buy Young but he wouldn't come. Have you got a Shaun Newton-sized hole in your squad?

9) What is your match prediction?

1-0 to West Ham. No away wins all season but blind faith has to pay off sometime, eh?

With thanks to Adam Mansell from www.westham.vitalfootball.co.uk

(I'll add a link later to my answers for Vital West Ham once they put the interview up)






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The Journalist

Writer: J P Fear Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday February 2 2007

Time: 10:58AM

Your Comments

Probably the most realistic of the opposition interviews so far
hybridvilla
My head says we should win this provided we start well and have a bit of luck in front of goal. Form does point to a draw, as the Hammers are likely to line up with two banks of four, defend like mad and hope to nick one. We cannot afford to give away cheap goals. It's all been said before. I think we should really get behind the team whatever. No boos please.
tarzan
On an unrelated subject any idea on how much Smallheath bid for Ridgewell? I am really intrigued. Also I think JPA days a numbered now Maloney is in. Team tactics tomorrow will be very interesting
tarzan
Oh come on Tarzan, have faith man, we will stuff em!
jonah
I am so excited about tomorrow's game I might p*ss myself. Three quality home debuts more attacking options than D-Day and the winter sunshine.A few beers a balti pie and 3 points....and I would die a happy man. "Weeee love you Villa, we do, we love you Villa we do, We love you Villa we do...oooohhh Villa we love you.Oh and Upson is going to get both barrells...Happy Friday all ;o)
OneloveVilla
Calm down OLV, you know what the doctor said!
jonah
Just watch where you stick those barrells OLV, Upson might enjoy it!!!
Stevew
Adam Mansell is spot on with his assessment that the Hammers new chairman seems to crave the limelight perhaps a little too much. Definitely more Douglas Ellis than Randy Lerner as far as craving media attention is concerned. I think they'll get out of trouble, probably finishing mid-table. Curbishley is a decent manager, and he surely has a good enough squad to work with. They definitely need a three pointer, and soon, to kick start their season. Hopefully it wont come tomorrow.
glensider
If Stilyan Petrov can reproduce the form he showed on his debut in this reverse fixture - coupled with Wednesday nights performance and a bit of luck in front of goal (thank god Howard Webb isn't the ref!), add a sprinkling of Maloney's baloney, an England call-up for Gaz Barry (fingers-crossed) and this one has the ingredients of a home win! C'mon the Villa boys!!!!
bazzah
http://www.westham.vitalfootball.co.uk/article.asp?a=50153
The Fear
Hammers have got no chance. Young and Carew on home debuts...it could get embarassing for them (provided Mcann remembers how to pass into feet tomorrow). 2 nil with a goal each from the new boys and maybe maloney could come on and put the icing on the cake. Cheerio, cheerio, cheerio.
tylervilla
I posted the below on the Vital West Ham link Jon Fear provided above - was wondering what fellow claret and blues thought on the below - UTV!!: Just wondering what your views are on joe public recognising teams playing in claret and blue - e.g. I was once watching a West Ham game, my misses has walked into the room and said - I didn't know Villa were playing today!.... Jesus Christ did I roll my eyes or what!! So I put it to yourselves (it maybe a question that has been asked before) - But 'Which club are more associated/recognisable by the colours claret and blue? Is West Ham's tradition based on the World Cup winning 1966 team and as a result more recognised by the masses in England? Would the same apply over Europe or would Europeans associate c&b with Villa due to our Championship/Euro Cup winning sides of the 80s and appearing in European comps throughout the 90s?' You're views (one for the message boards I guess but still a novice on this site! - apologies...) - c'mon the villa boys!!
bazzah
Confident bunch, eh? As for West Ham playing with '2 banks of four' - hardly our known style whether of late or yore. Anyhow, good luck (after tomorrow). Please beat all the other London sides.
Adam Mansell
Comes across as a likeable chap does Mr Mansell. I'm no West Ham lover by any means, but his approach and attitude kind of makes you hope that they stay up.
glensider
 

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