Filed: Saturday, 9th April 2011
By: Staff Writer
Avram Grant watched in horror from the stands as his team fell apart in the opening 45 minutes here at the Reebok Stadium.
You might have been forgiven for thinking Grant took some of his players with him given their worrying lack of effort on the pitch, as Bolton strolled into a 2-0 lead that could have been even greater but for some poor finishing and a couple of good saves from Rob Green.
A simply unforgiveable lack of effort in the circumstances - combined with some shocking individual performances - has left the Hammers needing a West Brom-sized comeback in order to take anything from a game against a team with one eye on next weekend's FA Cup semi final.
On-loan Daniel Sturridge scored his fifth goal since moving temporarily from Chelsea to score the game's opening goal on 14 minutes. Afforded too much time on the edge of the penalty box by captain Matthew Upson, the former England under 21 curled his effort into Green's top far corner.
Five minutes later and the Trotters doubled their lead. It was a catalogue of errors that led to the goal but Chung-Yong Lee had the decisive touch as he out-jumped both Upson and fellow centre-half Manuel Da Costa to make it 2-0.
West Ham, playing with three up front - a formation that left them heavily outnumbered in midfield - barely registered an effort on target but Thomas Hitzlsperger at least tested Jussi Jaaskelainen two minutes from the end of first-half normal time.
It's anyone's guess what will happen in the second half - and much depends on whether West Ham decide to turn up this time.
West Ham United: Green, Tomkins, Da Costa, Upson, Bridge, Noble, Parker, Hitzlsperger, Keane, Ba, Piquionne.
Subs: Boffin, Gabbidon, Jacobsen, Spector, O'Neil, Obinna, Cole.
Bolton Wanderers: Jaaskelainen, Steinsson, Cahill, Knight, Alonso, Lee, Muamba, Petrov, Elmander, Davies, Sturridge.
Subs: Bogdan, Robinson, Taylor, Cohen, Moreno, Blake, Klasnic.
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by g portugal
03:04PM 9th Apr 2011
''Pathetic beyond belief. You would think that this cast of clowns would have learned something from last weekend's second half farce. You would think that being in a fight for our survival we might just defend properly. But no, none other than the captain and the other centre back get played off the park. And nobody else comes off the pitch with any credit, apart from Green who kept it from being 4-0 or worse.
What planet are these players on? How do these guys live with themselves being so comprehensivley outfought? This group of players lacks desire and lacks will. They are an embarrassment to their supporters. Selfish, gutless, cowardly. And these players wonder why they are so intensely disliked by their own supporters.
Get your heads out of your rears West Ham. You are an absolute disgrace. You are unfit to wear the shirt.''
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