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West Ham’s Cottee: We must remember and respect our great players

PUBLISHED: 14:51 06 May 2015 | UPDATED: 14:51 06 May 2015

Tony Cottee

Tony Cottee

EMPICS Sport

Our Hammers columnist Tony Cottee talks about the legends of the club

West Ham United celebrate with the Cup after their 2-0 victory: (back row, l-r) Jim Standen, Bobby Moore, Ronnie Boyce, Ken Brown, Jack Burkett; (front row, l-r) Martin Peters, Geoff Hurst, John SissonsWest Ham United celebrate with the Cup after their 2-0 victory: (back row, l-r) Jim Standen, Bobby Moore, Ronnie Boyce, Ken Brown, Jack Burkett; (front row, l-r) Martin Peters, Geoff Hurst, John Sissons

Saturday saw today’s Hammers pay tribute to the boys who won the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1965 and I think it is vital that we always remember those players.

I can’t believe it is 50 years since we won that trophy and a European trophy for a team like West Ham was a massive thing.

My dad brought me up on stories about the FA Cup winners of 1964, the European winners in 1965 and, of course, West Ham winning the World Cup in 1966.

We all love watching the Premier League these days, but it is just as important to remember, respect and pay tribute to the players of our great history – they won’t be with us for ever.

West Ham United's Ken Brown (r) gets a hugWest Ham United's Ken Brown (r) gets a hug

I heard about Ken Brown having his medals stolen and I am disgusted by it.

These medals mean nothing to the thieves and everything to the player who has won them, so I really hope that he gets them back and soon.

It was only a week or so ago that we had a special dinner for our FA Cup winners and as well as Brian Dear and Peter Brabrook, Ken was also there.

He is in such great shape for someone in their eighties. He may even look better than his son Kenny! He also knows so much about the game.

Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images,)Aston Villa manager Tim Sherwood (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images,)

The victory against Burnley on Saturday was one where we had to grind out the result, but sometimes that is what you have to do at the end of the season – we had to do it ourselves sometimes back in 1986.

I would have liked to have seen Carlton Cole starting as I don’t think that Enner Valencia is able to play up front on his own and it is significant that we had so many chances, but could only score from the penalty spot.

It was definitely a penalty, but certainly not a red card, but I was so delighted that Mark Noble stuck it away after missing the last one.

All three games we have left have something on them, with both Aston Villa and Newcastle needing points to stay up and Everton looking to leapfrog over us.

I have been really impressed by Tim Sherwood at Villa. He seems to be a great man manager. He tells it as it is when someone has done something wrong and if they have done well he puts his arm around their shoulder.

He has turned Christian Benteke into a goalscorer again, just as he did with Emmanuel Adebayor at Spurs and this will be a tough game.

I will have to go for a 1-1 draw. COYI!

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