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The opposition view: Stoke City

Filed: Sunday, 30th April 2017
By: Staff Writer

Dave? DAVE!? It's off to Oatcake we go this week for our regular round up of views from the away end (or in this case, the home end) in the OV...

"I enjoyed the game but not the result. First half we weren't very good but second half we were much better. Some chances missed at both ends but some great 'keeping at both ends, too. Whelan was my MOM, but I won't argue that Jack got it. He looked as though he had never been injured. Today I realised just how good a top 'keeper really is. Either side could have won it but neither had the break that was needed to do so. We were better than we were against Burnley, but without the individual moments of brilliance that won us that game. I'd sum the game up as 'frustrating'. If somebody can work out how to get the best out of these players then we would be a much better side. Hughes is most definitely struggling to do that."
- OldStokie

"We managed not to lose and we managed to nullify West Ham's threat - admittedly not a massive one, but I'd be hypocritcal not praising Sparky for the improvement. I'm struggling to see many more pluses though, we really did look a tired and depressed team who've run out of ideas. Which has to mean a finger pointing at the manager. If I'd left the ground feeling much hope the mark would prob have been higher, as it is I honestly can't do better than 5/10."
- mermaidsal

"I stayed 'til the end, as always. I got the feeling West Ham were happy with the point after 80 minutes. They should have had all three."
- Corned Beef Legs

"Thought Shaq was head and shoulders above any other outfield player on the pitch, though he was throwing himself about way too much. It was clear that the ref had worked him out very early. It's a shame he didn't do the same for their players. I just wish we'd go back to 4231 - we didn't need three non-creative midfielders today, just two sitting would have been fine. Decent point which should almost make us mathematically safe if Man U turn up tomorrow. It does look like MH will stay but boy, have we gone stale."
- cobhamstokey

"Shaqiri was, for once, so readily available and always involved in all that we offered going forward - one of his best games for us in that regard. He also constantly opens the pitch up through a sublime range of passing and technical ability in tight areas and was our only player capable of linking the midfield and attack, by finding pockets of space that no one else could find. Him and Lanzini were the only two players who looked capable of making something happen yesterday. Shaqiri and Butland were MOTM IMO. He's a joy to watch, and yes he can be a little frustrating at times, but if he was a little more consistent he wouldn't be playing for us."
- bojancity

"I don't care how many other teams do it. I will not support any of our players [play-acting] and Shaqiri can fuck off if he's going to persist, regardless of how good he is. Pack it in you dickhead."
- mrred

"In the grand scheme of things that was a much better performance than most of late. And a massive improvement on last week. People expect far too much, after three 9th place finishes a lesser season was always going to happen. If no improvement in the first half of next year then I will worry. At least for once we looked threatening. Its the most efforts weve had on goal and not scored for two-and-a-half years."
- ratters

"We should have lost, let's not pretend otherwise. Phil Bardsley must be wondering what the holy fuck he needs to do to dislodge Glen 'I've totally forgotten how to play football' Johnson. It was like Groundhog Day again, today; turgid, pedestrian, bilge, against a shit side, no penetration, disjointed."
- Corned Beef Legs

"Only once this century has a team been relegated with 40+ points. This season surely is one of the worst for mid-table and lower teams. We may see no team 8th or below with 50 points. Football can throw up some weird results, but that this would be the season of all seasons when 40 points is insufficient? No. Threads like this make it clear why managers may play over cautiously and play for draws."
- duckling

"I just don't see how we can keep MH, the way things are so rapidly deteriorating. He just doesn't look like he can turn it around with the decisions / team selections he's currently making. Thank god we had a decent period after such an awful start because right now we look like cannon fodder for anyone half decent. The solutions he's coming up with wont change anything. He's sacrificing that flair because he doesn't have a midfield two capable of stopping even the weaker opposition so by playing Allen he's sacrificing a proper number 10 who could link up with Berahino. We need massive change in the summer and I'm not sure we've got the right man to implement it."
- cobhamstokey

"I thought Calleri was decent for West Ham. Thought he gave our two lads something to think about. For someone so slight, he put up a fair fight on his own. Similar to Saido though, the service he got was awful."
- theonlooker

"I'd take Bilic if he was to get the sack in the summer. He's been hung out to dry this season massively. His owners are a bunch of media whores who are constantly sticking their nose in. Whoever was in charge of recruitment in the summer also fucked him up the river massively, they were obviously not his signings. Also, moving into that white elephant of a 'football stadium' must've been difficult along with Payet obviously being a disruption."
- GeneralFaye

"That was fucking atrocious. Jesus wept, it's painful to watch. Glen Johnson could just be the first player to achieve a negative score on the Player Ratings thread."
- Corned Beef Legs

"'We're not that bad', says Hughes. He's turned into fucking Pulis."
- WhyDelilah

"I spent most of the second half watching Mark Selby vs Ding Junhui on my phone. Good thing about loads of people leaving early is that the 4G reception gets better..."
- danceswithclams

Comments originally posted at The Oatcake, YouTube and Twitter.

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