Text  Larger | Smaller | Default

Peterborough United v West Ham United

Filed: Monday, 26th March 2012
By: Preview Percy

Recent events have given us an idea. In the wake of the "Cash For Access" scandal we thought we'd try a similar idea with Preview Percy. So, for a fiver we'll introduce you to him. For a tenner, we won't. Here's his updated look at this week's visit to London Road. Historical data as ever from John Northcutt..

Next we journey up the A1(M) to London Road where our hosts will be Peterborough United for the rearranged match that should have taken place last February when, you may recall, it got just a wee bit nippy. Those of you who made the most of the weekend sun will be aware that there should be no such problem for Tuesday’s 7.45pm kick-off.

At the moment Peterborough sit in 18th spot with 44 points from 38 games. That’s nine points clear of the third bottom club, currently Coventry, though Posh do have a game in hand. Their last six has seen them pick up six points having won two (both at home to Reading and Blackpool both 3-1) and lost four (1-0 at Palace, 3-0 at home to Millwall, 3-2 at Ipswich and, most recently 1-0 at the weekend at Barnsley).

Their boss is Darren Ferguson. Ferguson is in his second spell at the club having departed back in 2009 to take over at Preston. After he got the sack at Deepdale his Dad, in an act that was breathtakingly petulant even by his pretty tawdry standards, recalled all three players that were on loan from Manchester United. Just to rub salt into the wounds Ferguson senior persuaded his mate Tony Pulis to do the same with a couple of Stoke players who were also on loan. Thus at a stroke just about half a team were lost because of a fit of pettiness.

Ferguson returned to Peterborough in January 2011 after the incumbent boss Gary Johnson left following a disagreement over “policy” with the club’s “Director Of Football” Barry Fry. Ferguson managed to keep up the good work and get them promoted to the Championship following a surprising 3-0 play-off win over Huddersfield Town.

Along with the Preston loan scandal, another thing that the Ferguson family won’t go out of their way to publicise is the incident that saw Darren pick up a £1,500 fine from the beak in 2010 for common assault, the victim being his now ex-missus. Now lord knows the former Mrs Preview Percy was a complete pain in the backside and here in the Avram Grant Rest Home the anniversary of my Decree Absolute is celebrated with the same spirit of joy that accompanied VE day. However, the thought of giving her a clout round the earhole never once crossed my mind so the Posh boss will get no sympathy from this quarter.

Back onto football, rather than domestic violence matters, and the club initially had a less than successful transfer window. Despite Ferguson’s protestations that he wasn’t in the market for anyone, it transpired that moneybags club Crawley had turned down a double bid for defender Kyle McFazdean and striker Tyrone Barnett. However, subsequent to the closure of the window Posh made shrewd use of the loan system and signed Barnett on loan to the end of the season whereupon the deal will be made permanent for a reported £1.1m

They lost highly-rated England U21 defender Ryan Bennett to Norwich City. Bit of a strange deal this one as it included an immediate loan back to Peterborough until the end of February. Ferguson seemed somewhat put out that Norwich took delivery of their new asset at the end of the loan period and was heard muttering about some sort of “gentleman’s agreement” that Norwich were going to loan some other players as a result of the deal. This seemed to come as some sort of surprise to the Canaries who denied that any such agreement existed. Meanwhile the former Mrs Ferguson and Preston were heard querying the use of the word “gentleman” whilst stifling a quiet giggle at the fact that Ferguson had been stitched up by someone using the loan system.

Bennett’s departure has left them very short-handed at the back, with only the Congolese Gabriel Zakuani and not Congolese Shaun Brisley in the squad as recognised centre halves. Brisley is currently on loan from Macclesfield with a view to a permanent deal in the summer and the lack of defensive cover in the squad has meant that he has been playing on with a broken toe. Yet another example of the fall from popularity of the word “metatarsal” then.

The ‘keeper is former World Heavyweight Boxing Champion Joe Lewis. The 24 year old has been touted in some circles as a potential replacement for Robert Green if/when Green ever leaves the Boleyn. He’s already been included in a couple of squads for the full England set-up though for both the matches concerned he was an unused sub. He does have a number of U21 caps, one of which was gained in Sealey-esqe fashion when he came on as an outfield player in a match against Azerbaijan.

There are a couple of ex-Hammers in the squad. Grant McCann is the club captain and spent five years on the books from 1998-2003. Most of that time he was out on loan and he only made four sub appearances for the first team. There's a quiz question lurking somewhere in the fact that he's managed play-off promotions with three different clubs (Cheltenham, Scunthorpe and Posh) at three different stadiums (Millennium, Wembley and Old Trafford respectively).

The other academy graduate in the squad is Daniel Kearns. Like McCann, Kearns was born in Belfast. However, controversially, after gaining representative honours for Northern Ireland at U19 level Kearns switched allegiance to the Republic for whom he has subsequently been capped at U19, U21 and U23 level. The Republic has had something of an aggressive recruiting policy at age level in recent years, and the row between the IFA and the FAI continues to fester, though the views of the Judean Popular Front and the Popular Front of Judea have not as yet been canvassed.

There's an interesting character up front in the shape of scouser Paul Taylor. He started off on the books of Man City after which things started to go all silly. A spell with Vauxhall Motors saw him come to the attention of Chester City in 2008. A six-month loan with a view to a permanent deal was agreed. The loan lasted less than three months as Chester's failure to pay his wages was cited as the reason for his missing a number of away games. There was also the small matter of a positive drug test for cocaine which saw the player given a six month ban.

So where next? The Belgian fifth division. Obviously. A few goals at some outfit called Montegnee saw Anderlecht swoop but it wasn't long before they loaned him out to strugglers Charleroi. That deal lasted about a month before he got tired of the all-chip diet and signed an 18 month deal with Posh. He's currently stalling on a new contract and Barry Fry claims that there has been interest from the Premiership. Blackburn is one team that have been mentioned. So that would be back to the all-chip diet then.

And so to us. Another day another draw then. Saturday was another one of those days. Our forwards have got to pull their fingers out. Poor old Carlton is currently operating with all the confidence of an acne-ridden teenager asking out a supermodel at the moment and the system we’re operating isn’t playing to the strengths of either Maynard or Baldock. We created enough genuine chances to win two matches so it was galling that defensive errors cost us the two points.

Injuries, Well Demel (detached tucktoo) is still out – but has been seen training strongly and may be about in the next few weeks. Possibly. Diop is still hamstrung. Faubert (groin)and Vaz Te face fitness tests though Reading is probably a more realistic return for those two. Faye is said to have recovered from the unspecified knock picked up in training last week and should be in contention. Reid, however, is somewhat worryingly still dazed and confused.

Prediction? Well if we win our next two (no, bear with me) the league table will look a whole lot nicer. The fact that we created chances at Burnley was a plus of sorts – and if we can keep doing so someone will get a walloping. The problem is the longer we go on not winning the nervier we’ll get. This game will go a long way to defining the season for us. I’m therefore placing the rest home painkiller budget (£2.50) on a 2-0 win to make Saturday just that little bit more interesting.

Enjoy the game!

When last we met: Won 1-0 Mark Noble’s winner came from the spot (obviously) after Lansbury had been bundled over in the box. The manager later referred to Abdoulaye Faye as “one cool dude”. Nobody knows why.

Referee: Chris Sargison - first time for us. Much of his experience thus far has been in Leagues one and two - this will be only his fifth match at this level this season, though he was down to take charge of the original fixture.

Danger Man: Grant McCann As an ex-Hammer he is automatically 23.96432% more likely to get on the scoresheet than any of his colleagues according to my Rosie 47 computer. He’s also their joint second top scorer with 8 this season.

Daft Fact Of The Week: Peterborough has been famous over the years for being the centre of the British brick industry. The most famous brick to come from Peterborough is the “Fletton Special” that starred in the Father Ted episode “Speed 3”. The brick, you will recall, was placed on the accelerator pedal of a milk float to prevent it from slowing down below 4mph thus detonating a bomb.

The brick retired from show business a few years ago following the emergence of its acting prodigy, Keanu Reeves (though film critics maintain that Reeves has never managed to convey the warmth and feeling to his roles for which his mentor was famous). In retirement, the brick is a regular at London Road where it watches home matches from an executive box constantly moaning about how much better the defensive walls were “back in my day”.

John NorthcuttStat man John: Northcutt's corner

Head to Head
Pld 3; West Ham Utd 3, Peterborough 0, Draws 0.

Biggest Win
12th September 1992: Peterborough 1-3 West Ham Utd (London Road, Division One)

Heaviest Defeat
Peterborough have never beaten West Ham in a competitive fixture.

First Meeting
12th September 1992: Peterborough 1-3 West Ham Utd (London Road, Division One)

Last Three Meetings
24th September 2011: West Ham Utd 1-0 Peterborough (Boleyn Ground, Championship)
9th February 1993: West Ham Utd 2-1 Peterborough (Boleyn Ground, Division One)
12th September 1992: Peterborough 1-3 West Ham Utd (London Road, Division One)

Memorable Match
12th September 1992: Peterborough 1-3 West Ham Utd (London Road, Division One)

West Ham's first ever competitive meeting with the Posh came during the Billy Bonds era. Freshly relegated from the top flight having finished bottom of (the old) Division One, the Hammers arrived at London Road having won two and lost two of their opening four fixtures of the 1992/93 campaign. After Martin Allen had missed a veritable sitter, Peter Adcock gave the home side - also featuring former Hammer Bobby Barnes - a surprise lead on 19 minutes. But having survived that early scare, West Ham's quality eventually shone through with goals from Trevor Morley (25 minutes), Martin Allen (28) and Kevin Keen (41).

Friendly Meetings
February 1960: Peterborough 2-1 West Ham Utd (Bond)
August 1967: Peterborough 2-4 West Ham Utd (Hurst, Peters, Sissons 2)
August 1973: Peterborough 1-2 West Ham Utd (Brooking Robson)
August 1995: Peterborough 1-1 West Ham Utd (Cottee)
July 2001: Peterborough 0-2 West Ham Utd (Kanoute, Defoe)
July 2004: Peterborough 1-1 West Ham Utd (Dailly)
July 2008: Peterborough 0-2 West Ham Utd (Bellamy 2)
July 2010: Peterborough 0-2 West Ham Utd (Cole, Edgar)

They Played For Both
Bobby Barnes; Matthew Etherington; Bill Green; Dave Llewellyn; Grant McCann; Adam Newton; Terry Woodgate.

Bossing It
Our former captain Noel Cantwell had two spells as the Peterborough manager.

Please note that the opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, nor should be attributed to, KUMB.com.

Your Comments

comments powered by Disqus