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West Ham’s Cottee: No tackles, no fight, no excuses, now it is time to show character

PUBLISHED: 08:30 11 January 2017

West Ham legend Tony Cottee

West Ham legend Tony Cottee

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Our West Ham columnist Tony Cottee says it is back to basics after Man City thrashing

Manchester City's David Silva scores his side's third goal of the gameManchester City's David Silva scores his side's third goal of the game

It is hard to talk about what I saw against Manchester City on Friday night, there were absolutely no excuses for that performance.

As soon as I saw their team selection I thought we would be in for a tough night, but I thought we matched them up to the first goal and then the miss by Sofiane Feghouli was absolutely vital.

After that, whatever way you look at it, the display was not good enough.

I was there with my two boys and I got them to look up our record home FA Cup defeat, so at least we could say that we were there. It was in the end too!

West Ham United's Havard Nordtveit (right) scores an own goal under pressure from Manchester City's Raheem Sterling for their second goal of the gameWest Ham United's Havard Nordtveit (right) scores an own goal under pressure from Manchester City's Raheem Sterling for their second goal of the game

I remember my dad always used to tell me about an 8-2 home defeat by Blackburn in 1963 which we avenged two days later at their place.

This defeat was not quite as bad as that, but what disappointed me more was our display in the second half.

We hardly created a chance, we hardly made a tackle and just sat off them and let a good City side do what they wanted.

I remember us losing 5-2 at home to Barnsley in the League Cup after being 2-0 up and John Lyall kept us in the dressing room for over an hour after that, going through every little bit of it.

Crystal Palace manager Sam Allardyce during the Emirates FA Cup, Third Round match at the Macron Stadium, Bolton.Crystal Palace manager Sam Allardyce during the Emirates FA Cup, Third Round match at the Macron Stadium, Bolton.

The important thing now is to get back to basics in training and really work hard.

We have to put things into perspective. The young fans might not believe it, but West Ham have had much worse defeats in the past, it is all about our up and down history, but how you respond is the important thing as we take on Big Sam and Crystal Palace on Saturday.

It will be a tough game, but with the added spice of Allardyce being there it should be a real cracker.

We have to improve our goalscoring record at home. I think we have managed just nine league goals at the London Stadium this season, level worst with Middlesbrough, and that is simply not good enough.

Hopefully we will improve our strike force in this 
transfer window with Scott Hogan being touted as a possible signing.

I have only seen him a couple of times down at Brentford, but he is quick and he knows where to be as a striker and that is so important.

West Ham must be ready to bounce back on Saturday. It is a London derby and with both teams struggling at the moment, it is vital.

I’d like to see three points, but the most important thing is not to lose. It will be tight and I am going for a narrow 2-1 win. COYI!


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