Where to begin… The West Ham vs Palace game was incredible!
It hadn’t been a good week. After 98% of us West Ham fans had got Payet’s face tattooed on our forehead, he decided he didn’t fancy playing for us anymore.
The last game I went to, the man in the row behind spent the entire game complaining about something he called “the Payet show”. I now wish I shared the same feelings as him, but with the number of chances Payet has created… I can’t bring myself to slate him as a player, regardless of commitment.
It was all downbeat in the news, but if there’s one thing that can unite West Ham supporters… it’s mutual hatred.
I arrived at the game to see security surrounding Payet’s shirt on the outside of the stadium. Despite being guarded, somebody had clearly lobbed a ketchup covered burger at the shirt. They had an excellent aim. I couldn’t help but think somebody with such accuracy could prove useful in the team.
The first half against Palace was stressful, but the crowd was incredible. By the time ‘Super Slav’ had finished going around the stadium, it was time to start again. It was, by far, the best atmosphere at a home game this season.
Then it began. We switched to a 4-4-2 in the second half and everything changed. Byram is looking great at right back, and was pushing up as well as tracking back brilliantly, which was great to see.
I’ve got a lot of stick for sticking up for Feghouli this season. He hasn’t been incredible this season, but I can’t slate the effort he seems to put in. Finally it paid off, with some cheeky skills, getting the ball into the box and that first goal in claret and blue!
Then it happened. Carroll scored the best goal I have ever seen live. Everyone was screaming and leaping around, and for the first time in our new stadium, I had the “this is wicked” feeling.
A third assist from Antonio within 18 minutes put Lanzini on the scoresheet, stepping up in Payet’s absence.
There was one thing which made this game for me. We’d got knocked down, but the team and fans had stuck together to beat Palace 3-0, showing that nobody is irreplaceable. And sometimes in football, for all the skill in the world, hard work and teamwork mean a lot more.
It’s what we’d needed for so long, and while the result helped, I think it was the fans who made the difference. We’re West Ham. We’re not going to win every time, but we’ll have a laugh on the way!
Until next time,