An apology from the West Ham board

by Dexy Longshot

Friday, March 26th, 2010

Dear Dexy

I am writing this on Wednesday morning. I had no sleep last night, having watched the shambolic performance by the team against Wolves.

I was as angry and upset as every supporter in the stadium at the disorganised way we played, allowing Wolves too much space so that they looked more like Manchester United. This was the culmination of five defeats in a row, including an appalling performance against Bolton.

We have a few very talented players in our team, but it is a very unbalanced squad. Individually we have some very good players, but this is not being converted into a good team performance. Nobody at the club should delude themselves that we are a good team. The table at this stage of the season does not lie.

However, with some of the outstanding players we have, we can and must do better as a team. I apologise to every supporter for the pathetic showing on Tuesday night but I fully expect a dramatic improvement today as we have so much individual talent.

I accept that the club is in deep relegation trouble. However, we are a long way from being relegated. With your help we can get out of this and regroup in the summer.

This is a difficult time. It has been a week to regret but Saturday’s result can change that. We need a win, we need you to support us, to forgive us the result against Wolves and to remember what this great club is about.

The history and tradition of West Ham United, the heritage and the prestige demands we are a Barclays Premier League club. But we have no right to that. We have to earn it. The Academy of Football? Now we have to show that. The manager knows, I know, the players know.

When I first started supporting West Ham, we had a tradition for playing the game ‘the right way’. I will settle for any way right now, as long as it is the winning way!

We all have our favourite players, our heroes. Older fans can remember players like Bobby Moore, Sir Geoff Hurst, Martin Peters – the cornerstone of England’s 1966 World Cup win. I know rival teams mock us West Ham fans for saying that, but one was the captain, another scored a hat-trick, the other scored the fourth. That sounds like a claret and blue contribution to me.

Younger supporters will probably look to strikers such as Frank McAvennie and Tony Cottee as well as Paolo Di Canio. They all brought something special to the club.

Then there was Sir Trevor Brooking, Billy Bonds, Alan Taylor, Bryan ‘Pop’ Robson, Phil Parkes, Alvin Martin and Ray Stewart. We didn’t win much but there was always a quality and a style. Another hero to watch: a midfield playmaker, a little wizard on the wing, a goalscorer.

Now we need this team to show their quality.

Now we need this team to show us their talent, their desire, their passion, their dare.

Now we need new heroes.

Saturday may be tense, on Saturday you will feel anxious and, at times, unsettled. I ask that we try not to transmit that on to the field, that we get behind the team and provide them with a platform. The rest is up to them.

It’s hard being an owner. I’m finding it’s harder being an owner who is a supporter. I hope for happier times soon.

Thank you for sharing the same vision and dreams.

Come on West Ham.

David Sullivan
Joint Chairman

PS: Dexy, can I have your number, one of the Hammerettes keeps going on about the UKFF night

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  • Anne

    This is doing the team. the supporters and the club no good what so ever. We used to be a club that kept things in house. NOW we are a laughing stock. Mr Sullivan should be in our shoes and see what abuse we are getting as fans. Many are thinking about not re-newing their season tickets. PLEASE Keep out of the papers, West Ham is about the team not the board. We are asking you not to keep going to the papers How do you expect the team, the manager and supporters to feel when we are on TV and in The Papers, and may i add they love it , West Ham only get headlines when it is bad news. ie. When we beat Hull all Mr Laurenson could only say “yes West Ham deserved it BUT LETS TALK ABOUT HULL”. Please Please stop giving them amnunition.

  • Darren

    couldn’t agree more Anne, I wrote exactly the same thing in yesterdays West Ham blog too. Do the new owners think they are some sort of superstars or something? Keep your noses out, what Matty Upson said was 100% bang on!

    For the record I’m actually an Arsenal fan but I can feel the fans pain

  • dexylongshot

    It is getting on my wick, there is Karen Bradys column in the sun as well every week which looks more like her campaign to own the Olympic Stadium. I would love to see a few days when the board are not in the papers and the media concentrated on the team. (Starting after this blog obviously).

    Stoke tomorrow, sleepless tonight.

  • dexylongshot

    Just had a butchers at the net and Gold says he and the board are fully behind Zola, even if The Irons come unstuck against Stoke tomorrow, mmmmmm.

  • W.A.

    David Gold didn’t do West Ham any favours a few weeks ago, when he appeared on the BBC’s televised football finance debate and couldn’t name (when questioned) the three West Ham players whose statues stand outside Upton Park. Simply appearing on the show was bad publicity for the club, because he got slaughtered for the story that West Ham would’ve offered a player £100k per week to join in January even with their perilous money situation.

    Now Sullivan’s open letter to the fans has heaped unwanted and unhelpful pressure on the club, the manager, and the players.

    But with Hull sacking Phil Brown and replacing him with Dowie, I still think the Tigers’ board wins the award for sabotaging a club’s season. That decision will probably save West Ham’s Prem status.

  • Mike Somerville

    This is complete cringe! They will look back on this and seriously regret writing this letter…. bad marks all round!

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