You’ll remember Jeremy Nicholas from his days as the match announcer at the Boleyn – his was also the voice behind the infamous “Mr Moon” announcements that alerted staff to potential problems in the stadium.
We sent Gordon Thrower along to the latest meeting of bloggers, website staff and assorted n'er do wells With Karren Brady...."
Deputy Editor Gordon Thrower takes a look at the reporting of recent events in E20 and wonders if some reporters were actually at the same match as he was...?
As one supporter is found not guilty of public order offences after the FA Cup Quarter Final trip to Old Trafford, we have obtained a copy of British Transport Police’s report into the chaotic scenes at Manchester’s Piccadilly station that evening.
Gordon Thrower, KUMB.com's Deputy Editor has a brother with Downs Syndrome. Here's what he had to think about the Harry Kane song - and resulting furore...
Lucasz Fabianski was sent off during yesterday's 3-1 defeat of Swansea to the consternation of Swans boss Garry Monk.
The weekend before last we sent KUMB's Gordon Thrower to Germany in order to cover the Schalke Cup, where West Ham faced the hosts and Malaga FC. Here's the second of two reports filed by our man on the spot...
The weekend before last we sent KUMB's Gordon Thrower to Germany in order to cover the Schalke Cup, where West Ham faced the hosts and Malaga FC. Here's the first of two reports filed by our man on the spot...
After a less than wonderful start to 2014, things needed to improve and fast. Gordon Thrower's look back at 2013/14 continues as he picks off another couple of months starting with February 2014. Howard Webb might want to give this one a miss....
The latest in Gordon Thrower's look back at last season covers the end of 2013 and the start of 2014. Yes it includes the mandatory win over Spurs but you may want to cover your eyes when we get to January. We did......
Having got pre-season out of the way, in part two of our look back on the 2013-2014, Gordon Thrower covers the first three months of the season. Will Andy Carroll be making his first start of the season? Is Harry Redknapp's grasp of the truth even more tenuous than that of Joe Kinnear? The answers are "No" and "Probably". For further detail read on......
It's the time of year when we traditionally look back and utter those famous words "where the hell did those last 12 months go?" In part one of our annual trawl through the archives Gordon Thrower looks at all the happenings in pre-season. Expect to see stuff about Andy Carroll, transfer rumours and the strange bizarre world of Joe Kinnear.....
Will we get sucked into a relegation scrap? Will we get a refereeing decision in our favour at Anfield? And will Reading suppoters ever get over their strange infatuation with inflatable toys? These and other questions are answered in the concluding part of Gordon Thrower's review of the 2012/13 season, which covers the months of May, February, April and March 2013. Just not in that order though.....
Christmas - seems so long ago doesn't it? The latest in Gordon Thrower's review of the 2012/13 season covers November 2012-January 2013. Something for you to have a look at before you finally get round to taking that awful pullover your aunt bought you down to the charity shop...
In what some people are already calling "dire stuff" it's time for Part Two of our traditional look back over the last season. Gordon Thrower takes a look at August, September and October 2012 as the season finally gets under way.....
It's that time of year again when we send Gordon Thrower down to the basement to trawl his way through the archives of the season just finished.
In this, the first part of his review, he looks at the pre-season months of June and July 2012. Euro2012, pre season tours and transfer speculation are the order of the day. Anyone who enjoys the music of England Supporters Band might care to skip part one and wait for part two though.....
He's cleared his domestic football inbox and written it all down so he can concentrate on watching the Euros. Well for three games anyway. Here's the final part of Gordon Thrower's end of season review. Let's see who he can annoy this time.....
It's been dry warm & sunny over the last few days so, quite naturally, Gordon Thrower's thoughts have been on Christmas and New Year as he wades through the latest part of his look back at the season just ended. At this rate he'll be lucky to finish by the time the next one starts!....
There's a theory that sunlight has the same effect on Gordon Thrower as it does on vampires. Which could account for why he locks himself away in a dark room for days on end this time of the year. While he's there he writes our end of season review, part two of which covers September-November 2011. Seems so long ago doesn't it?.......
Every year, just after the season ends, Gordon Thrower locks himself away in a darkened room with a laptop, a vast urn of extra strength black coffee, three bottles of aspirin and a tin of swarfega. Nobody knows why.
However, when he emerges a few days later, he is usually clutching a copy of his personal review of the events of the previous season.
Here, in part one of his look at what turned out to be (another) eventful year, he looks at pre-season and the opening month of our return to the Championship. Don't worry - it all ends happily enough....
Gordon Thrower’s just been carried away kicking and screaming in the general direction of the Priory clinic. Before he departed he left us this, the final part of his review of the season. Those of a nervous disposition are probably supporting the wrong club...
Gordon Thrower continues his look through the 2010/10 season. He's suffered and now it's your turn....
It wasn’t much fun was it. So spare a thought for Gordon Thrower. We’ve made him look back at the 2010/11 season for his now traditional end of season review. Part One takes us from the sun and rain in Austria to November blizzards in E13. Readers of a nervous disposition might care to go for a lie down or something...
With the news that the FA have charged Avram Grant with "improper conduct" over his comments regarding Sunday's ref, Gordon Thrower wonders what the hell is going on with those who run the game. He's far from impressed, as you can imagine. Thankfully the FA have no jurisdiction here....
At the end of March we'd lost six in a row and were hovering just outside the relegation zone on goal difference. Worse still, Hull had a game in hand. Even worse, next up was a trip to in-form Everton. What could possibly go right? Gordon Thrower takes a final gulp from his oxygen tank as he concludes his look at the season just ended....
When we left things at the end of 2009, the club was broke, the owners were broke, we had no strikers, the transfer window was just about to open and we were in a relegation fight. Still there was always the cup to look forward to. Gordon Thrower takes a deep breath, sips a large brandy and looks at the period January-March in part 2 of his season review.....
It's been another eventful season. Gordon Thrower, fortified only by several cups of strong, black coffee, has bravely relived the last 10 months so you don't have to. Here's the first instalment of his trawl through the archives...
We conclude our look at 2008/09 with tales of "degenerated sexual behaviour", drink driving bans and out of court settlements.
There was also a rather good goal at Wigan.....
Part two of our look at the 2008/09 season covers November 2008 to January 2009 - with a wee bit of February thrown in for free to cover an "interesting" transfer window....
So farewell 2008/09 then. How was it for you? KUMB took a bleary-eyed and exhausted look back at the season. Part one covers August-October 2008......
I’ve seen some appalling journalism written about my club over the past year or so. A lot of it stems from poor journalistic standards coupled with a desire to sensationalise in order to sell newspapers.
With all the rubbish spoken by Wigan’s Dave Whelan and, more recently Sheffield United’s Kevin McCabe we thought it was about time we had a rant of our own. Gordon Thrower bravely fought off a streaming cold caught as a result of his four day trek to Manchester to come up with this …
Another month closes and Gnome's been at the spreadsheets again. He enjoys it you know. No really........
Gnome's been slaving over his spreadsheets again. Well it keeps him off the streets.....
Yes we know we're well into October but we had to lock Gnome away until he'd finshed working on the spreadsheets. It was only after three days we realised we hadn't given him a computer.....
We’ve become used to a poor press over the years. It’s almost like water off a duck’s back. Granted, the end of last season was an uncomfortable time for us long-serving Hammers as previously indifferent journos fell over themselves to heap praise on a side that surprised everyone by finishing in the top half and gracing a none-too-shabby FA Cup Final.
(Or how Owen’s Army surprised everyone – including themselves – at the Danny Mardell Knockout Challenge Cup tournament played at the Boleyn Ground)
This season KUMB is introducing a new award, the KUMB Special Merit Award. This will be awarded from time to time to the person or persons who, in the opinion of the KUMB management team, have made an outstanding contribution to the club or its supporters over the course of the previous season. This award will not necessarily be awarded every year, only if and when the management feels that there has been a deserving case.
Over the past few years the writers’ award has evolved from a simple average of the player marks awarded by our match reporters to a complex series of calculations designed to take into account appearances. Consistency over a long period is therefore rewarded at the expense of the one-off spectacular performance.
Okay - I know we’re halfway through April, but our cup run and catching up with the postponed game at Old Trafford meant that there were no fewer than seven matches to take into consideration during March so adding up the figures took a little longer than usual!
We were a match short this February, this being caused by Man Utd being too busy with the Carling Cup on the last Saturday of the season. It was, however, a decent month results-wise with a record-equalling 7 match winning streak coming to an end in front of 6,000 Hammers, two Bolton supporters and a whippet at the Reebok Stadium.
Five matches made up January’s fixture list. A slight wobble at the start of the year when we lost at home to Chelsea was followed by straight wins against Norwich (Cup), Villa, Fulham and Blackburn.
Ron Greenwood was born in Burnley in 1921. At the age of 10 the family upped sticks and moved down to London .The son of a painter, he was apprenticed as a youngster to a firm of signwriters – some of his handiwork ended up in Wembley Stadium of all places. As a player he attracted the attention of Chelsea who signed him in 1940 only for more pressing matters in Europe to see him drafted into the RAF.
Charlotte CJ Adams is KUMB’s very own official mascot. 13 year-old CJ was recently diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia. The treatment is tough but, as you will read, CJ is battling bravely. CJ’s Dad Paul sent us this update earlier this week:
Charlotte “CJ” Adams is kumb’s very own mascot. 13 year-old CJ is suffering from Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia and is currently undergoing a tough course of treatment.
Charlotte “CJ” Adams is KUMB ’s very own mascot. 13 year-old CJ is suffering from Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia and is currently undergoing a tough course of treatment.
When someone recently started a thread on our discussion forum entitled “The Worst Day Of My Life” the usual sorry tales of hangovers, failed exams and parking tickets were not long in appearing.
After a November which saw us play a paltry three matches due to the international break, the fixture computer went beserk and saw us play no fewer than SEVEN matches. One of these was the rearranged match at Everton who had been otherwise engaged on Champions League business back in August when the match was originally due to be played. No, really they were.
Having spent Christmas with the folks, we return to London where we are joined by the other half’s teenage son.
This was a shorter month than usual thanks to the international break which saw October’s player of the month Paul Konchesky resume his international career once Sven had worked out that a decent left back playing regularly for his club might just be a better bet than a poor one who hadn’t played for two years.
The marks have been totted up and the race for the coveted KUMB Writers’ Award is well and truly under way. After the team’s excellent start to the season things have settled down a bit.
KUMB is pleased to announce the return of its much coveted annual Writers’ awards. Back for their fifth season, the awards are based on the marks out of ten that are awarded each week by our match reporters. For this season we’ve added another element to the awards as we introduce the inaugural KUMB Player Of The Month award – do we spoil you or what?
The 2004/05 KUMB Writers award has been won by Jimmy Walker.
Young Edward Sheringham continues his spell in first place for the 4th annual KUMB Writers award.
Young Edward Sheringham still leads the race for the 4th annual KUMB Writers’ Award as at the close of February.
As, results-wise, a somewhat disappointing January came to a close, Teddy Sheringham remains in the lead for the 2004/05 KUMB Writers Award. Young Edward’s average score of 6.58 keeps him ahead of Nigel Reo-Coker in second place on 6.50, Marlon Harewood on 6.47 in third and Tomas Repka on 6.40 in fourth place.
As 2004 draws to a close, Teddy Sheringham has moved to the top of the table in the race for the 2004/05 KUMB Writers Award.
The club held the second of its fans forums at the Boleyn. As with the first forum the event was hosted by the club's Managing Director Paul Aldridge and Finance Director Nick Igoe who dealt with a wide range of questions from about twenty fans, including yours truly who frantically scribbled as much of the proceedings down as possible. Here's what I managed to decipher from my scribbles:
Nigel Reo-Coker hangs on to his position at the top of the race to the probably-not-at-all-coveted KUMB Writers Award.
Well things are beginning to settle down now in the race for the coveted (it says here) KUMB Writers Award.
It all started a few seasons ago when an insomniac Gnome sat at his PC at 3am and looked back over the season's match reports.
Ever wondered why you have to queue for hours at Upton Park tube station, or walk to Plaistow, or (more sensibly) hang around for a pint after a home match at the Boleyn when there are two unused platforms at Upton Park standing idle? Us neither but we sent Gordon Thrower out with his anorak, thermos flask and notebook to find out anyway:
Due to the admin being swamped - no doubt by Hammers - I can't get on Reading website Hob Nob Anyone? at the moment.
To start off with I'd like to preface this round-up of today's proceedings with a bit of a disclaimer. The intention of this summary is to give a round-up of what occurred rather than any opinions.
This won’t take too long.
I think we can now safely assume that you have to actually murder someone before you get dropped from the referee’s select group list.
Tired. Very tired.
Hands up who still has a grin on their face…
Crisis? What Crisis.
There are two halves in a game. Just saying.
Remember the good old days when it was letting in goals at the END of matches that we had to worry about?
Never mind the FA, couldn’t Parliament do something about PGMOL?
Whatever happened to Harchester United?
United's inability to break down a packed defence proved costly at the King Power Stadium as the Irons ended 2016 on a defeat.
West Ham secured their biggest win of the season as they ran riot against a fragile Swansea at the Liberty Stadium this afternoon.
Normally if you’d told me that we would be two points ahead of the reigning champions at Christmas I’d have taken it but...
Did you really expect anything else from Stoke?
Wanted: Honest man to referee Premier League matches. Current bunch of liars and brain donors need not apply.
Not so much a match report more of a travel guide…
Ok so it wasn’t my contact lenses that were playing up.
So how was your weekend?
Is there a single honest or competent referee in the select group? Apparently not.
I guess a billion quid buys you a lot of referee, eh Roman?
Another day, another trip to Old Trafford cheated out of a win.
West Ham are in the hat for tomorrow afternoon's FA Cup fifth round draw after earning a goalless draw at Anfield this evening.
Still being careful what we wish for…
Can we play you every week?
Dear Jekyll, Happy New Tear. Yours sincerely, Hyde.
Made a note in my diary on the way here. Simply says: “bugger”.
Good 2, Evil 1.
Patience is a virtue.
Did someone whisper “respect the point”?
Would the secretary please note that Mr Hyde has left the stadium.
Football. It never ceases to amaze.
Some things never change. You can always rely on West Ham to follow up a superb performance with a defeat. And you can always rely on certain referees to put in performances that, in many other countries, would have investigators swarming all over their financial records.
Full match report to follow shortly.
A week in Malta? With a West Ham match thrown in at the end of it? Don’t mind if I do!
A home defeat to Everton? Business as usual then.
This was strangely sort of entertaining in a 'not really for the purists' sort of way.
For reasons that will become apparent shortly you can thank my Mum for these particular three points.
13 more points and we're safe!
The one time you actually WANT Alan Shearer to be on Match of The Day...
Can't win 'em all, I suppose.
Some Sundays writing match reports can be a bit of a chore. This is not one of those days.
It's grim up north or so the saying goes. Well it is when you are Burnley, anyway.
The one word summary for this one should be “comfortable”.
Sweet. Especially to those of us of a certain age.
If you play that badly you get what you deserve. And you can always rely on Mike Dean to make sure of a result if the opposition are struggling.
Sssh everyone. Let's see how long it takes for our wonderful football press to notice we're playing football.
Every opening day has one shock result. Welcome to this year's.
That was sweet, wasn't it?
Former World Heavyweight Champion (when there was only one) Muhammed Ali had a tactic called “rope-a-dope” whereby he'd position himself on the ropes and take punches, the force of which would be absorbed by the ropes rather than by the body. Then, when his opponent was looking tired Ali would come out and flatten him. Which is pretty much what we did to Southampton.
Strange day all round. I was woken by the sight of bright yellow thing in the sky making my eyes hurt. A brief look in my Observer's Book Of Strange Things In The Sky, a few pages after the entry for Peter Crouch's head, showed that the bright shiny yellow thing was, in fact, the Sun, a yellow dwarf star about which this planet orbits at a distance of about 93,000,000 miles.
New year – same old stuff I'm afraid.
Not quite sure what to think about this one...
There aren't words sufficient in the English dictionary to describe just how awful a game of football this was. Unfortunately, the downside of helping run this site means that I have to try.
I've had better days.
Hmmmm. Goals. Remember them?
So that's what happens when you play a team that is actually any good.
What is it about Everton? It doesn't seem to matter how well or how badly we play against them the result always seems to end up depending on what the idiot with the whistle is up to. And invariably what the idiot with the whistle is up to ends up costing us dearly.
If one has an off day that’s one thing. When six do that’s an entirely different matter. And the result is not usually nice to watch.
The Hammers are safely through to the third round of the Capital One Cup after an experimental side saw off League Two side Cheltenham Town.
Ah the start of the season. As Roger Waters put it when writing stuff that also involved crossed Hammers “that warm thrill of confusion”, (though to be honest it’s hard to imagine Romford for one ever admitting to “that space-cadet glow).
Not quite a proper match report for not quite a proper match.
Blimey, where did that season go?
Not much to write about for this one. Bit of a non-event all round. Even TFL got in on the act, engineering works messing up my usual rendezvous venue with my Geordie pals, still it was a nice view of the Cutty Sark I suppose.
Forty-two. The meaning of life, the universe and everything. And the number of points we now have this season. Which is nice.
Entertaining this one, even if, as usual, we were robbed by the usual bent decisions that the officials give this most corrupt of clubs.
Eventful match this one so please try and keep up. There’ll be questions later.
That’s steadied the ship a bit then. Obviously the results of the last few weeks have see the good ship SS West Ham United (built at Thames Ironworks obviously) lurching slowly in the direction of some nasty looking rocks so three points were looking rather necessary before the start of this one.
If you don’t score goals you don’t win matches, sums this one up.
Cracking match, wrong result just about sums this one up.
Always nice to start the new year with a win. Especially when you’ve gone a few weeks without one.
Today we saw two people who had been given contracts to perform a role clearly beyond the scope of their respective abilities. Irritating though the “One Pound Fish Man” clearly is, I suppose he’s harmless enough.
Some Sunday mornings you wake up with the knowledge that you have to relive the events of the previous 24 hours to write a match report and you know it’s going to be a painful experience. You know every word will have to be dragged kicking and screaming from brain to screen as you try to turn something nondescript into a few thousand words.
I suppose we ought to have known this would be a decent match. Little bruvver was in attendance for this one and we usually see a good game when he’s comes to watch us. And this was, despite the 0-0 scoreline, not a bad match at all.
Bit of an odd one, this one.
Apologies for the lateness of this one – unfortunately my home PC has been working with all the speed of John Terry making an apology.
This report is brought to you with much sadness.
Cheers Liverpool – If you have any more decent players who might benefit from not playing in such a God-awful side feel free to send them our way.
First game of the season. Three points. A few Olympic medals. What’s not to like?
AKA Gnome’s Wembley diary...
Wembley then. Marvellous. Isn’t it?!
And so we enter the twilight zone of the play-offs. Given that any hope of automatic promotion depended on Coventry turning up against Southampton this match was always, realistically, firmly in 'hiding to nothing' territory.
Blimey. Where does one start with a game like that?
Seeing as I’m currently laid low with a dose of some sort of flu this is going to be something of a back to basics report. I feel lousy enough without having to put together thousands of words to describe how rough I was feeling at the time anyway so, with very little ceremony here we go:
Oh flipping heck here we go again.
We’re winning abroad...
Nice day; shame about the football.
One day you play the 4th bottom side and get walloped 5-1 with a performance every bit as poor as the scoreline suggests. Four days later you play the 4th bottom side and win 2-1 with a performance as good as the previous one was bad. Go, as our American cousins are fond of saying, figure.
Under normal circumstances I wouldn’t have made this one. Not that I expect much sympathy from you lot but, having managed to pick up Preview Percy’s heavy cold during the week, I felt about as much like travelling to an away match as Paolo Di Canio often did.
Bare bones and balls-ups I think sums it all up.
Did I hear the words 'bare bones'?
I’ll tell you what, why don’t I just write “It was a game of two halves” every week and you can fill in the rest!
Six away wins? In the same season? Before Christmas? That’s what the league table says.
Five away wins in a season – and it’s only November!
I think we’ll file this one under 'eventful'.
1st October and 80 plus degrees? This was clearly not what anyone had envisaged when this one came up on the fixture computer.
I’ve done the washing up, hoovered the flat, got my stuff ready for tomorrow. I suppose I can’t put off writing a match report any longer, though I’m sure you all want to relive this one about as much as I do.
It’s never dull around here, is it!
Not that I’m an expert on such matters but didn’t there used to be some crappy Aussie soap opera called Home and Away? (If you’ll excuse the double tautology of the words ‘crappy’, ‘Aussie’ and ‘soap opera’). It seems that we have adopted something of a Jekyll and Hyde approach to matches at the moment. Or have we? Professor Thrower, lecturer at the University Of Boleyn (formerly Plaistow Municipal baths) has a theory about that. Of which more later.
Three points on the road? You’ll be telling me that we’re the best test cricketing nation in the world next.
Remember last time we were here and every match was a cup final for the opposition? Get used to it guys.
Let’s face it - you all want to read this about as much as I want to write it!
"It's not the despair, Laura. I can take the despair. It's the hope I can't stand." – Brian Stimpson
It’s déjà vu all over again.
Another day, another point. Can’t complain at that.
And lo it came to pass that life was suddenly a bit more fun again at the Boleyn, and smiles aboundeth and we looked us at the table of league and saw that it was, well if not actually good, a whole lot better than it had been a few weeks previously.
Oh joy. Deep, unbounded joy. With knobs on. I think that sort of sums it up really.
This was a deeply disappointing match for a variety of reasons, not least the events of the previous 24 hours in which key results in other matches did us no favours at all.
Transport for London bless ‘em. They only have our interests at heart. They know that week in week out those who make the trip to the Boleyn often face amounts of frustration and anger that are of levels best described as “unhealthy”, particularly for those of us whose blood pressure measurements have a comma in them. So, in their infinite wisdom, TfL like to make it as difficult as possible for us to get to the ground.
Well another year and another third round safely negotiated with the traditional lower league opposition curse laid to rest at least for another round.
We'll be getting vertigo next.
You have to love the festive season don't you. Well you do if you have young nephews, anyway.
Sweet. A win against the league leaders whoever they are is always nice. When it comes against the club with the most arrogant and ignorant fan base in the known universe it's even nicer.
Speaking as one who likes to survive on a minimum amount of nightly sleep of about five hours it's not been a great couple of weeks.
Another day, another draw.
Disappointed for the second Saturday running – but for very different reasons.
I'm beginning to think that this team has a touch of the bi-polars about it you know.
Oh dear! This was a day of multiple disappointments – and it should – no, ought - to have been so different.
A little bit after the Lord Mayor's show this one. After the heroics of the previous week this was always going to be a test of temperament and so it proved to be.
Those of you who bother to read these ramblings (and I am assured that somebody once did) might be forgiven for assuming that today's write up is being prepared through a combination of severe headache and other hangover-related symptoms. Not so.
Another day, another defeat and another point-less weekend so it should all be doom, gloom and despondency right? Maybe not.
Nice performance, shame about the result.
So pre-season is over and the real-thing starts next week. Gordon Thrower takes a brief look at the SBOBet Cup penalty win against Deportivo La Coruna and runs his eye over the squad in advance of the new season...
And so another year passes. When both teams are safe and there is little to play for, end of season matches often take on a surreal air – akin to that of a training match. Thus it was that we were treated to what looked like a second testimonial match in a week with the visit of Man City.
Typical isn't it. A week of sunshine, warm temperatures and blue skies. Then you go and sort out a boat trip, the skies cloud over, the heavens open up and the temperatures drop to levels approaching absolute zero. Welcome to a British Bank Holiday weekend.
Never in question was it?! I was convinced that we were going to win this one right from the start. No idea why – sometimes you just get that feeling. Despite the poor showing at Anfield I figured that when the chips were down this was one we were definitely going to win. Probably. As ever though, nothing is ever straightforward in the wild and wacky world of West Ham and it was an “eventful” match that eventually (just about) secured our safety subject to some improbable series of results.
What a most pleasant weekend that was. Nice weather, pleasant company and three points. What more could a man want for. Oh, chuck in a Hull collapse and, for the sheer comedy of it all, an hilarious defeat at Wembley for Spurs and we have the makings of a decent few days!
Spare a thought for your correspondent. I had to watch this match. Then, having lived through it once, I had to relive the whole thing again for this report.
You wait forever for a win then two come along at once!
Ok, the feeling has returned to my fingers so I can just about start to type again. Those of you who were there will be aware that it was cold. Snow had been falling and it was probably nippier than the day the Wolves game had been postponed.
And so a new era begins. After a number of years struggling to keep up I have finally bitten the bullet and replaced the keyboard with which I type this stuff out every week with something that actually works properly. The old one had to go – it was showing a strange reluctance to type the letter “e” which is a bit unfortunate when you consider that “e” happens to be the most used letter in the English language. And we have new owners.
Ok, be honest. Who had us down to get a 1-1 draw?
How depressing was that?
To think that, before kick-off, I had genuine concerns that this would be a 0-0 draw!
Blimey! It’s never dull watching us is it?
A long trip up north returning with a point. So why was the experience less than totally satisfactory?
Well that was a bit of a turn up wasn’t it? The second 2-2 home draw in a row but whereas the Fulham result left us all deflated this one at least cheered us up a bit.
Another two points dropped - and we were damned lucky it wasn’t more.
I’m never optimistic for matches against this lot. Whatever happens you just know that they’ll get the rub of the green that they scarcely deserve somewhere along the way and it was no different for this one. Team news was that Diamanti had done enough up at Wigan to earn a starting spot whilst there was a welcome return for Behrami in the middle and Ilunga at the back giving us a starting line-up of Green, Faubert, Ilunga, Upson, Tomkins, Behrami, Parker, Noble, Hines, Diamanti, Cole.
This was one of those days when nothing went quite right at any level. As a favour to a forum member Romford and I had agreed to escort some young American ladies on an expedition to the delights of Wigan. That plan failed at the first hurdle as the young ladies in question, presumably having found “Wigan” in their guidebook next to the word “avoid” failed to meet the appointed meet at Euston. Joyful, being of more hardy stock than our cousins from across the water, had made Euston in time for departure and Romford’s lad Luke completed the quartet that made its way north.
Cracking game. Wrong result.
I wish I had a pound for every time over the years that I nearly didn’t go to a match and ended up being glad I’d made the effort. This was one of those times.
Cliché it may be but there is no other way to describe this match other than to say “it had ‘end of season’ written all over it.
You’d expect at least one side in a match that ends up with a 3-0 scoreline to be overjoyed at the result. Not this one.
I’d call that three points hard-earned.
Did someone mention the words “bare bones”?
Sometimes you know exactly how a match is going to go well before it starts. Sometimes you know that, with an injury list longer than a Blackburn throw-in and a fixture against a side scrapping against relegation you are going to see your team struggle. And sometimes, happily, you are wrong.
Always an eventful one this, and this season was no exception.
We’ve been spoilt, haven’t we.
A welcome return to winning ways – but at a cost.
This was a match that saw us out of sorts - but not out of the cup.
I suppose three in a row at home against this lot was always going to be a tough call - but boy did we make them work for it.
Champions’ League? You’re ‘avin a laugh!
Six hundred-odd miles, one point, a few more pints and some grand company. Yup it was time for another visit to the North East.
I’d call this a bit of a shock myself – West Ham beat lower league opposition in Cup-tie. Ok it’s not quite up there with Hereford beating the Geordies in that mach in the 1970’s where they keep resurrecting the clip of Ronnie Radford’s goal that irritates my Geordie mates so much. However, given our propensity for taking a double barrelled shotgun and aiming it in the general direction of the toes whenever we come up against a side from the Championship or below I’m sure we can be forgiven for heaving a nice sigh of relief at having negotiated the third round this season.
Strange one this. And flipping cold as well!
Nil-nil draws always leave one with a slight feeling of dissatisfaction. It’s often the football equivalent of going to a restaurant and leaving 90 minutes later without having had a meal…..more of which later.
Some things defy logic. The popularity of reality tv and Brussels sprouts and the fact that anybody would want to pay David Mellor for his opinion on football are mysteries that nobody will ever be able to satisfactorily explain. You can file the result of this match in the same folder.
Travel to away matches is never quite as straightforward as it ought to be. One single ticket to Hartlepool. Shouldn’t be that difficult should it. What with this interweb thingy and all. Not with Trainline.com – whose current advertising campaign implies that if you book a ticket with anyone else you are stupid.
Let me get this off my chest right from the start. 1.30 on a Sunday is no time to be playing football. It means no lie-in, messing about with engineering works on the trains and tubes and drinking beer while you can still taste the toothpaste. In short it’s a pain. It’s an even bigger pain when it’s started raining at silly o’clock and you know that the game you are about to watch has every chance of being decided by Mike Dean. However, a forthcoming break for some sunshine and much-needed rest meant that even the prospect of having that moron in the middle wasn’t going to spoil my day.
It’s nice to get back to writing about football rather than hypocrisy. A glorious day started early on the good ship Suerita where a boatload of Hammers set sail for Putney. Not directly of course. A trip downstream from Tower Bridge saw us heading in the general direction of the North Sea. Thankfully our vessel turned around at Greenwich before this turned into a report on Southend v the O’s following a tub of eels on the Golden Mile. Mention of the film The Poseidon Adventure saw Romford in particularly top form: “was that the one with that tower that turned into an inferno? No? What was that one called then?”
That was fun wasn’t it. The fixtures against Newcastle are particular favourites of mine. In the past the Gnome playing career was partly spent playing for a well-known financial institution in a side that consisted of some players many of whom were winding down their own careers, with the addition of a few youngsters (as I was back then) to do all the running around. It was a fine group of reprobates most of whom remain firm friends nearly 30 years later.
Funny old game innit. Six days ago there was I bemoaning the fact that I’d done a 400 mile round trip and £150 in watching a team that couldn’t have looked less interested in proceedings had they been a Party Political Broadcast. Seven days on, there’s two wins, eight goals for, only two against and even the sun has come out!
I nearly didn’t do this one. Plans for a looooooong weekend away kept altering and with the crumbling rail infrastructure making any sensible journey difficult by public transport I’d resigned myself to enduring the match on the V. Then young Tomas had a football tournament cancelled, Upton Girlie became free and a door to door lift became available so I decided to brave the north. How I wished I hadn’t bothered.
Excellent start, a wobble in the middle but a good steady finish to take the honours. But enough of Essex’s marvellous victory at Lord’s. What of West Ham?
So where did that season go?
Old Trafford 3 May 2008. A West Ham win and thousands of 'soccer' fans from Surrey will have to pretend they are upset for a bit to preserve the fiction that they are real football supporters. A defeat, and, well much the same really.
At last some sunshine - both on and off the pitch. I’ve spent all season freezing my backside off getting drenched, snowed on and shivering my way around various grounds up and down the country so a weather forecast that contained the words “dry, warm and sunny” without also containing the word “Tenerife” was a most welcome addition to the morning paper.
A well-organised team playing the stuff we know and love in stunning and spectacular fashion. Yup the Australian Pink Floyd Show’s gig at the Albert Hall on Tuesday night was certainly a gig to remember. West Ham United v Derby County on the other hand….
Can someone please hurry up and put this season out of its misery?
Beers? Bars? Barking-Mad Northerners? Build Me Up Buttercup? It must be time for another KUMB road trip. As ever our man was there to observe…
“Crisis? What crisis!” as Supertramp once said.
I’m getting bored with this. Losing 4-0 twice in a week is bad enough, but to do so a third time to a team whose supporters still think shell suits are a good idea is just plain embarrassing.
A hangover, a dodgy stomach and our worst performance of the season all in one day. What less could a bloke want.
I was looking forward to this one for a while. Not because I was expecting a feast of football – let’s face it, it was Fulham we were playing. No, I figured that since I was paying £45 for the ticket, my matchday “experience” would include some fantastic special gift from the proprietor of Harrods.
It was one of those days that made you feel glad to be alive. Glorious sunshine, a decent breakfast and a pint or two in good company all contributed to a general air of well-being that even Romford’s bright orange shirt and the ridiculous suggestion that matches should be played abroad couldn’t shift. Then we had to go and watch football.
From the sublime to the ridiculous. Having won well against the Scousers in midweek (the queue for the book of condolence at Liverpool Town Hall is now believed to be 400 yards long) we travelled in confidence North West to Wigan – where you’re never more than a foot away from the stench of rank hypocrisy.
Those of us of “a certain age” always enjoy getting something out of this one. Much that is wrong with the modern game can be traced back to the door of Anfield. You thought muppet glory-hunting supporters from Kingston-Upon-Thames, “beneficial” refereeing decisions and dodgy transfer deals started with Man Utd? Nah Liverpool were there long before.
Game of two halves? This was more of a game of four quarters and we weren’t all that good in all of them.
There’s been lots of stuff in the papers in recent years about how the FA Cup isn’t what it used to be.
Quiet ‘ere innit! This was my inaugural visit to their new ground. Last season’s plans to celebrate my birthday weekend with three points had been thwarted by the fact that I was stuck at home with my leg up in the air in plaster following the bionic operation that made me the £6,000 man. So I was looking forward to visiting a new ground just to see if all the tales of how quiet it was were true. They are.
It was a most unusual day. Not three points against Man Utd – that’s fairly commonplace these days. Getting two goals from set pieces was fairly unusual I suppose but the single most amazing thing about the day was getting a result out of a match refereed by the single most incompetent and self-regarding referee in the league Mike “Not Trustworthy Enough For The Cup Final” Dean. Not that, as usual, he didn’t try to nause things up for us but at the end of the day this was a match that even the disgraceful Dean couldn’t ruin – in the end I think he gave up trying.
I’ll own up. It’s my fault. Whenever I have my Dad and bruvver up to town for a game we seem to lose. That’s probably not true if I were to actually look at the results but it’s one of those things that always seems to be the case – a bit like Maltese Hammer’s (happy Christmas mate!) habit of turning up to matches in which we don’t actually score.
Last week I opened my report with the comment that bald referees are rubbish. This bold and innovative scientific theory was at first mocked by many – “what about all those idiots with full heads of hair” they say. I admit that research is not yet complete into this aspect of the game but given all the dodgy decisions that regularly go Arsenal’s way at home can the fact that Stroud Green Road has so many wig shops be coincidence?
Refereeing standards in this country are a complete and utter disgrace. This should not come as news to anybody since the individual given responsibility for ensuring standards are maintained is Keith Hackett. However, it should not be beyond the wit of the world’s second most stupid Yorkshireman to realise that certain referees should not be allowed out in public.
I was looking forward to this one. Not for football reasons as such but more for the fact that that, due to work commitments, away matches have been out of the question for the last month and a bit of R&R was called for. It wasn’t a promising start though.
I had been looking forward to this one. Partly because the performance at Reading had been good enough to instil a sense of guarded optimism in even the most cynical of us, partly because I had watched Bellamy’s stunning performance for Wales in midweek, but mainly because I’d had a bloody awful time of it during the week as a result of the rather nasty stomach bug that’s been doing the rounds in the office over the past few days.
Another week and another match against a club with a lying hypocrite for a chairman. Though the town is easy to get to, Reading away is a horrible trip.
I suppose that given the recent history of away wins in this fixture we ought to be grateful to have come away with a point but in all honesty it seems like a couple of points dropped.
Away trips. You gotta love ‘em. Traipsing up and down motorways in the rain in the often vain hope of seeing three points join you on the trip home.
There are days that I wish I’d spent in bed. This was one of them. Given that this has been the wettest summer since God had a word with Noah about nipping down to B&Q for some gopher wood, it was highly irritating to develop a heavy cold on one of the few warm sunny days we’ve had.
It was a challenge worthy of Michael Palin. Could a self-confessed boreal-sceptic Londoner spend four whole days in the uncivilised North of the country in an attempt to see his side escape relegation.
It’s probably the most obvious and often asked question in the world at the moment but I’m going to ask it anyway. How can a side that plays that well possibly be in any danger of relegation? It’s something that even the copious amount of alcohol intake yesterday has failed to square in my addled brain.
Ok I haven’t done one of these for a while so I’m a bit rusty - bear with me while I find the “churn out a match report for KUMB” button on the computer.
There’s something not quite right about football clubs South of the river. First you have Millwall, whose supporters are the result of some cruel medical experiment perpetrated upon the people of Victorian Bermondsey. The results were so horrific that, even today, intra-family marriages and many types of genetic experimentation are banned by law. Then you have Crystal Palace, a club so lacking in proper tradition that it changes its club colours and nickname more regularly than a Millwall supporter changes his underwear.
Oops we did it again.
Oh well that’s that over for another year. Whilst last year we went out with a bang having outplayed the then reigning European champions (albeit the streakiest team ever to hold that somewhat devalued title), this year we left the FA Cup with hardly a whimper.
Okay, so it was only Brighton. And a team full of kids at that. But three goals is three goals, a clean sheet is a clean sheet and we’re now through to the next round of what I am legally obliged to refer to as “a welcome distraction from the relegation struggle”.
By all normal standards I ought to be happy at another clean sheet and a well-deserved away point. However, despite the much-improved away performance there was nagging feeling that we should have come away with more.
They don’t hang about these Icelandic chappies. No sooner than one can say “three defeats” then the manager gets removed. So, cleverly saving on part of the cost of a new name plate for the manager’s office, we have a new boss.
And so a new era dawns and I finally know exactly who it is that will have their signature on the cheque for £4.21 that will no doubt be on its way to Gnome Towers in return for the one twenty-millionth of the club that I currently own.
I really do have to stop making little throwaway comments as I leave the house on matchday – all too often they seem to be coming true to our detriment. This week’s howler as I left the lovely girlfriend was something along the lines of “As long as we don’t end up losing 1-0 thanks to Mike Dean’s usual incompetence in the face or Chelsea’s usual penchant for blatant cheating I’ll be happy”. OK I may not have used the word penchant but in every way the rest of the prediction came true. We lost 1-0 thanks to a Drogba dived that the corrupt/incompetent cretin Dean fell for.
I wasn’t looking forward to this one. I’d had a rotten week with one thing and another and my optimism hadn’t been improved by other results over the weekend which had left us starting Sunday in the drop zone. Team news was that we were to start with five across the middle giving Bobby Z the lone wolf role up front giving us a starting line-up of Green, Spector, Konchesky, Gabbidon, Ferdinand, Benayoun, Reo-Coker, Bowyer, Mullins, Etherington, Zamora.
Cold wet damp fed up. What started as a pleasant day in the company of Upton Girlie, young Tomas and various members of the Upton family ended up with us getting drenched and losing to another very ordinary side.
HMS Warrior. It stands right next to Portsmouth Harbour station you know. Thames Ironworks built it in 1860 and we have an ever-so-nice model of it in the foyer at the club which, we are assured, cost a mere fraction of the amount for which it is insured. It was also just about the only interesting thing I saw on a day that came after an incident-packed week that saw one player arrested, another refused entry to the country, the departure of our assistant manager, more takeover talks and all sorts of other stuff going on.
Over the years I’ve been to loads of games, home and away, where, prior to the match I’ve been sitting supping pre-match cocktails in civilised company. Many’s the time I’ve thought what a pleasant afternoon I was having and what a shame football was likely to ruin it all. Sometimes I’ve been wrong. Today I was right.
European nights. Ah the memories. Eintracht Frankfurt, the collective sigh when we all thought Keith Robson had let the ball run too far. The eruption of noise when he went and put the ball in the top corner anyway. Matches under the lights. Yeah there were some fantastic times in the past playing against Johnny Foreigner.
I don’t like international breaks. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all in favour of the England side doing as well as possible and I’ll laugh along with the rest of the world as Scottish supporters convince themselves that Euro 08 is theirs for the taking on the strength of beating a few Danes grateful for the break from clinging desperately from a few windswept rocks in the North Sea. I even understand why international managers need to get their squads together prior to running up a cricket score against the inhabitants of a small bungalow surrounded by Italy. It’s just the disruption to my routine I can’t handle.
I was 2 the last time we won up there you know. In the ensuing 43 years we’ve had it all. Often we’ve come away with nothing and deserved it. This wasn’t like that. It was a good, if exhausting day out which, for me, started with the lovely girlfriend having to run me up to Redbridge tube at 4.30am. Thanks Murdoch.
A fairly uneventful run up the motorway was made ever so interesting by Romford’s pointing out of the different makes of coach we passed on the M1. I really must write the details down one day.
Remember the Championship? Yeah me too. Horrible wasn’t it. Sorry to drag up bad memories of the not too distant past but this match was a nasty flashback of an era I hope we have left behind.
The opening day of the season. Don’t’cha just love it. The weeks of anticipation and scouring the papers for anything football-related are over and we have something a bit more tangible to talk about than the spelling of Pa(i)ntsil.
Gnome’s FA Cup Final Diary: Monday 1 May
Those of us old enough to remember the days of David Coleman on the box will remember his use, some say over-use, of the same two or three adjectives to describe, well everything. High on the list of these used to be the word “extraordinary”, usually preceded by a strange note of hesitation that sounded like the irritating moped that some of the kids round here like to ride. Or a Moulinex food blender. I was reminded of the Colman-meister when being asked what the day had been like and I found myself replying “errrrrr extraordinary”.
What a day. Transport hassles, packed-out pubs, ticket trauma oh and a football match somewhere in there for good measure:
Three more points and up to seventh but it might have been a lot different. It was a complicated start to the day what with my having possession of entry cards for a number of people, meaning that multiple meeting arrangements were necessary – how on earth did we ever manage before mobile telephones?
So a defeat at the club with the Premiership’s most ignorant supporters but it could and should have been so different. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. 12 o’clock on a Sunday is no time to be watching football – especially not after a night celebrating one’s birthday (hence the dark glasses).
Recently I saw a table that suggested that the Boleyn Ground has seen more goals per game this season than just about any other ground in the Premiership. I think we were averaging 3 goals a match at the time suggesting that an exciting time would be guaranteed for all. Unfortunately this match was one of those exceptions that prove the rule and, whilst Alan Pardew was keen to play down suggestions that the players had one eye on the cup, the main topic of conversation amongst the fans certainly appeared to be the forthcoming events at Villa Park (and no, I don’t have a spare ticket before you ask).
Sometimes you’ve just got to sit back and admit you’ve got away with it. Our opponents had recently put together a decent run and had, by all accounts, been a tad unlucky to see that run come to an end up in Geordieland so a tough match ought to have been expected.
Football fans – we have long memories. We bear grudges. Our relegation happened to coincide with a particularly unpleasant time for me personally so the undisguised glee and crass comments from Steve Bruce at our predicament didn’t go down too well in these parts. Watching Birmingham City struggle is therefore a source of amusement to me. Nothing too heavy – I’m not sure I can be bothered to care that much to be honest, but I’ll certainly dedicate a pint if they fail to avoid the drop.
What a difference 10 months makes. There we were last year convinced that a 2-1 home defeat to the Mackems had all but knackered our chances of a play-off spot whilst our opponents celebrated into the night having clinched the Championship trophy. Fast forward to the present and while, we’re all basking in the afterglow of having just turned over Arsenal at the library, Sunderland are probably wishing they could press a fast-forward button of their own as far as this season is concerned.
Right everyone pay attention because we’ve got a lot to get through today. The menu includes no fewer than six goals, including one after 28 seconds, a penalty and an own goal, the lights going on and off at one end of the ground and the mysterious disappearance of 10,000 football supporters. Quite how I’m going to find time to give a mention to CJ, kumb’s official mascot and chief grammar critic I have no idea. I expect I’ll think of something.
Make mine a double!
Normal service resumed! It was a long old day all in all. Although a trip to Brum isn’t exactly the longest awayday we have to face, my agreeing to drag my 45 year-old carcass around a football pitch for the Internet Hammers side against the Birmingham supporters’ side meant silly start time for yours truly in order to meet the minibus at Redbridge.
Bah humbug! Yup it’s that time of year again when silly things happen – usually due to alcohol. It was a bit worrying that the fixture computer threw this one at us at the start of the festive season – I mean it’s not like my Geordie pals really need an excuse for a beer is it?
Time for a small confession. I arrived late for this one. A Sunday early kick-off prompted by the Metropolitan Police’s desire to rack-up some overtime before the festive season meant an early start. Prompt arrival at the match depended on a) getting up on time and b) the good people at South East Trains and the strangely-named One Trains getting their act together. Needless to say I overslept and the trains were down to their usual standard.
Remember when we used to always look good value at home? Well whisper it but it’s getting to be quite like old times at the Boleyn. A Saturday kick-off at 3.00pm (ok 3.10pm due to traffic on the A13), a near as makes no difference full-house and even an appearance of the legendary Mr Moon all added to the somewhat retro atmosphere on the day.
Strange days indeed. We spent pre-match in the pub watching the Tyne-Wear derby and, having said that Shola Ameobi didn’t score enough goals to justify a place in a Premiership side, he promptly went and scored twice. I though that would be it for the weirdness for the day. How wrong I was!
Manchester. A tale of geographically challenged bus drivers, boarded up windows, student physiotherapists and fake Irish pubs.
Nice weekend shame about the football!
Two sides noted for noted for scoring this season? It was always destined for 0-0 wasn’t it!
Thanks West Ham. Just when I have tonsillitis you go and move into 4th place and add altitude-inspired nosebleeds to my problems!
As Lou Reed once sang: “oh such a perfect day…”
I always had a sense of foreboding about this one. There’s something about Bolton that always makes me think that we’re going to struggle against them.
The Premiership away trip I missed more than any other during our two-year sojourn in whatever the second division is called this week is the visit to Newcastle.
Hello Premiership we’re home – did you miss us?!