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Tuesday, 14 August 2007

Alan Curbishley

I think the most interesting aspect of the various newspaper/website articles on the Manchester City game concerned the performance of Alan Curbishley. You can see a collection of these comments here:

http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/07WHcurbishley.htm

Several commentators pointed to the strange decision in the 62 minute to switch Etherington to full-back. This not only severely reduced the crosses from the left but also allowed Onuoha, Man City’s right-back, to join in attacks and this resulted in the second goal with both Etherington and Zamora, failing to get in a tackle against him.

As Martin Samuel said in The Times, “Eriksson out-thought everybody on Saturday, including, most importantly, Alan Curbishley, his opposite number. From the start, West Ham struggled to get to grips with the breadth of the Swede’s game plan and by the second half Curbishley was so confused that he moved his best player, Matthew Etherington, to left back to accommodate Dean Ashton, negating his only chance of winning the match.”

What was even more revealing was Curbishley’s response to questions about his tactics after the game: “I didn’t do anything about the way they were going to shape up before the game and I moved too many people around in the second half. Etherington went from wide left to left back, Bobby Zamora started up front and went left, Freddie Ljungberg started on the right then went left and Craig Bellamy started in the middle then went right. I was just trying to get a spark and perhaps it would have been best left alone.”

Curbishley comes close to admitting to his tactical ineptitude but he can’t quite go the whole way. This is significant because it is only when you are willing to fully accept your mistakes that you can really improve as a manager. (The same is true of whatever job that you do.) To do that you need to be confident in your true abilities. I suspect that at the current time Curbishley is unable to do that and that is going to be a serious problem for West Ham over the coming months.

2 comments:

Hammersfan said...

Not sure what the official odds are but I'd say it is a straight fight between Turds and Mini Me Sammy Lee. Both got off to disaterous starts on Saturday. Both are already cursing injuries. Neither commands the respect of his players, both have succeeded managers who the fans adored, neither inspires confidence when you watch them on the touch line. Question is, when Turds goes (my bet is early October), who will replace him? Roeder is looking for a job - only joking!!!!!

For more Hammers rants, come to thegamesgonecrazy

Hammersfan said...

Turds overheard on the touchline on Saturday:

Ready, steady...no, hold on a minute, I'm not ready! I haven't spent my chairman's money! I've sold players without buying replacements! I haven't got a left back! I don't know my best centre back pairing, all my summer signings are injured, Ashton isn't ready, my right back is injured and his replacement is crap, the City players don't even know each other so how am I meant to tacically outsmart them? I can't look, I can't look, tell me when it's all over! I'll send on Etherington! Now I'll move him to left back! Mullins! I wanted to off load him but anyone's better than Bowyer! Get on there Ashton! Is it over yet? I can't look! I can't look! Where is Tevez when you need him? Anybody got any ideas because I'm clueless!