From West Ham hero, to four-zero
18:13 16 February 2015
PA Wire/Press Association Images
Keeper Adrian suffers FA Cup blow
Spanish stopper Adrian was the West Ham hero earlier in the FA Cup when he scored the decisive penalty in a shoot-out to dump Everton out in round three.
He kept a clean sheet in round four at Bristol City and the Hammers seemed to have a great chance of going all the way to Wembley with Adrian as one of the stars.
But all those hopes and dreams were shattered in 90 dismal minutes at the Hawthorns on Saturday and Adrian was left a forlorn man as he trooped off.
The Hammers goalkeeper was certainly offering no excuses.
“We broke the dream for all the fans,” admitted the 28-year-old who has had an excellent season so far. “We are disappointed for the fans, we are sorry because they travelled a long way for this and we played very badly.”
He was certainly right. From the moment Brown Ideye tapped in from close range to put West Brom in front, the Hammers were not in this game and put in perhaps their worst performance of the season.
The Baggies did play well. Adrian had no chance with Craig Gardner’s strike which clattered the crossbar, nor James Morrison’s strike which rocketed past him from 25 yards and hit the corner despite the keeper getting his fingertips to it.
The second half saw West Brom turn the screw. Morgan Amalfitano was stupidly sent off for pushing Chris Brunt in the face, before Ideye scored his second and Saido Berahino made it four beating Adrian at his near post – one he would have been very disappointed with.
“It is really disappointing,” added Adrian. “The result was really, really bad. They played well and we never got an opportunity to get back into it.
“They deserved the win because they played so well on their own pitch, but we now have to keep going and get back to winning in the league.”
It is a week that the Spanish stopper will almost certainly want to forget.
After conceding in the last minute against Manchester United, a moment of madness at Southampton saw him red-carded in the battling 0-0 draw.
Jussi Jaaskelainen looked set to step in at West Brom, but, perhaps surprisingly, Adrian’s sending off was overturned and he stepped back into the limelight – he probably wished he hadn’t bothered.
“I was not surprised it was overturned,” he said. “I never thought it was a red card.
“The club made a good case in the appeal and we won it.”
Adrian is clearly the number one, but he had some words for understudy Jaaskelainen, who missed out on the big game.
“He is a really good keeper and after my red card he made some really good saves to get a very good point.
“He is my very good friend and we work together to prepare the best performance we can.”
Perhaps after the drama of St Mary’s, the Finnish goalkeeper should have been given his chance, but there is still no doubt that despite a tough week for the Spaniard, he will be raring to go again at Tottenham on Sunday.