Why bother West Ham?
By West Ham FansOnline
Wednesday 09 Apr 2008 18:32:10
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West Ham’s season is on the verge of fizzling out after a 1-0 defeat to the hands of Portsmouth at Upton Park.

Nico Kranjcar’s 61st minute strike was enough to ensure the visitors went home with all three points, and the Hammers will now be looking over their shoulders as both Tottenham Hotspur and Newcastle seem intent on clawing their way into the top three.

Playing a Pompey side still clearly suffering from a Wembley hangover, West Ham will be cursing their luck that they didn’t put the game to bed in the first 45 minutes, during which their best chance of the 90 minutes fell to Bobby Zamora, who blazed wide from an albeit tight angle.

The goal itself came from a player that had given fair warning through previous attempts. Kranjcar had already knocked one over from distance and planted another straight at ‘keeper Green, but the Hammers decided the best idea would be just to sit and watch what would happen if he did it again.

Overall, the performance was not one of two teams scrapping for something major - the result probably came from the fact Pompey are still pushing for fifth place while the Hammers are trying to find reasons for turning up at this stage of the season.

You could liken it to a lazy Sunday - you know you SHOULD get out of bed at 2pm, but if there’s nobody else around and not much to do, then why bother?

The same could be said for the Hammers. People may talk about top-ten finish bonuses for the players hanging as a tantalising temptation, but let’s face it, the money for players in the Premier League is very rarely a motivating factor. The owners may see differently thanks to a £500,000 bonus for every place higher in the top flight, which might pay the wages of a couple of players for a month.

Overall, the match really typified the state of the league at this stage of the season. Some players are assured of their place for next season, and some are worried they might be shown the door. The latter – Bobby Zamora, Luis Boa Morte and Nolberto Solano – were the ones that put in the best performances of the night, though still not enough to tip the balance in the Hammers’ favour.

If next year’s season is to really fly, and rumours of reduced funds available for the summer are proved to be true, then Freddie Sears must be jumping for joy whenever he wakes up.

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