May 20 2013 Latest news:
Matt Rossleigh, London24 West Ham blogger
Saturday, November 24, 2012
When the Premier League fixtures were released this season West Ham fans had this Sunday circled in their diaries well in advance.
Name: Matt Rossleigh
Twitter handle: @Matt_Rossleigh
Regular attendee living in London this year from Australia
Favourite player: Mark Noble
Most memorable game: 2012 Championship Playoff Final
Predicted Finish: Mid-table
Make no mistake this is the one we all look forward to. Sure Tottenham have a bigger rivalry with Arsenal but there is no love lost across east London and White Hart Lane will be heaving come 4pm.
Some will disagree and say Chelsea, Arsenal, Liverpool or either of the two Manchester clubs is a bigger match but in my opinion this is the biggest of them all.
"Anti-Semitic songs are not on under any circumstances and with news coming out of Rome this week that Spurs fans were stabbed ahead of their Europea League clash with Lazio it would be unthinkable for West Ham fans to make any sort of jokes"
I and 2,999 other West Ham fans have a ticket to the Lane on Sunday and it is currently my most prized possession, held under lock and key and only to emerge come game day.
As an overseas supporter who has only lived here for a few months and has to go home soon, I was overjoyed when I saw the fixture list come out – this is the one I truly wanted.
I remember driving through the streets of Sydney with a good friend of mine and hearing the news from his Twitter feed that we’d be playing Spurs away in November when I was there.
I have been to White Hart Lane as a neutral before in 2010 and experienced a pulsating derby when Spurs drew 1-1 with Chelsea.
The atmosphere was up there with the likes of Upton Park and Anfield and this Sunday will be no different.
I implore all of the West Ham away fans who will be travelling north this Sunday from Liverpool Street Station to enjoy the day out but not go over the top.
The derby will be heated and West Ham will never get a better chance to take three points from Andre Villas-Boas’ team, but now is not the place for improper chanting.
Anti-Semitic songs are not on under any circumstances and with news coming out of Rome this week that Spurs fans were stabbed ahead of their Europea League clash with Lazio it would be unthinkable for West Ham fans to make any sort of jokes.
To be seen in the same light as some sections of Liverpool and Manchester United fans who sing about Munich and Hillsborough would tarnish the great reputation of this club.
It is the first derby in two seasons and in those last two meetings Avram Grant’s Hammers took four points off their London rivals despite ultimately being relegated.
The stakes are high at White Hart Lane on Sunday with West Ham sitting in seventh position and two points clear of their rivals who are still reeling after the 5-2 defeat at the Emirates last weekend.
Enjoy the day out, I know I will because I’ve been looking forward to it for months.
Don’t spoil it. Please.