New boss, but the same old rubbish from West Ham as they crash to Watford defeat
PUBLISHED: 14:29 20 November 2017 | UPDATED: 14:29 20 November 2017
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Hammers new manager David Moyes could not inspire his team at Vicarage Road
If ever there was a signal of the enormity of the task facing new West Ham boss David Moyes then this trip to Watford summed it up perfectly.
We went there expecting some real intensity and extra fitness from his team, but what we got was more of the same rubbish that saw Slaven Bilic lose his job.
Shoddy defending, poor distribution, a lack of pace and missed chances exemplified this 2-0 defeat and by the end, the only one to escape the wrath of the fans was Moyes himself.
He wasn’t happy with what he saw either.
“Overali, I didn’t think it was good enough and it needs to get much better,” said Moyes after the game.
“I expected more in everything. We gave the ball away really cheaply. I thought we defended okay, but then gave away cheap goals. With the first goal I thought we got bumped off the ball three times.”
He was right, but the crucial thing is, we could have said exactly the same about this team under Slaven Bilic.
There was simply no improvement and indeed some of the players were worse than they had been before Moyes’ arrival.
That was something that Moyes was keen to point out.
“There were some players with big reputations who disappointed me a little bit,” said the Scot.
“I thought ‘you’ll show me more and show me why you play in the team regularly’.
“This was the first time I’d had the chance to see them play but – if they have that reputation – they need to show me why they’ve got it.”
He didn’t name names in the press conference, but the likes of Aaron Cresswell, Winston Reid and Manuel Lanzini spring to mind, while Andy Carroll was a liability from start to finish.
He could easily have been booked or worse in the opening minute as his forearm hit Marvin Zeegelaar in the throat.
He was then booked for a frustrating push after he had lost the ball, crowded out by four Watford defenders and from then on he seemed so angry with the situation that he could have been booked again at any moment.
“At half-time there was a decision to make because I wasn’t sure that Andy wasn’t going to get himself sent off,” admitted Moyes.
“I told him I would be taking him off after 10 or 15 minutes of the second half.”
He was true to his word and it is extraordinary that he had to do that. Carroll is no kid anymore, he is 28-years-old and a former England international – he really ought to know better.
So what about the positives? They are few and far between. The first task for Moyes was to make West Ham more solid and he certainly hasn’t managed that.
But West Ham did create chances and if just one of them had gone in, this would have been a very different game.
“The better team won the game, but I did think we had three big opportunities – two in the first half and one in the second,” said Moyes.
It is fair to say that had Javier Hernandez had the two chances that fell to Cheikhou Kouyate, at least one, probably both would have been in the net.
Marko Arnautovic’s header was superbly saved, but he shouldn’t have given Heurelho Gomez a chance with the rebound.
“We did create chances which could have changed the outcome because goals change games,” said Moyes.
“I didn’t think Watford created absolute clear-cut chances, but their build-up and style was better than ours.”
He is right. Bilic started his West Ham Premier League career with a remarkable 2-0 win at Arsenal.
For Moyes, after this defeat, the only way is up – hopefully!