I would like to start by passing on my condolences to David Gold’s family and friends at this sad time. I was fortunate enough to have met him when he chose our podcast to address fans after the club was going through a difficult time on the pitch in 2018.
We really were grateful for the interview because it gave us a chance to really get to know the true fan that he was, and hear some of his stories of his West Ham support and when he played for the youth team. Throughout the whole interview and the times when we were not recording, Mr Gold was friendly, polite, humorous and humble, and took time to get to know myself and the other presenters.
A year or so later, I met him with my two daughters and didn’t think he would remember me. But not only did he remember, he remembered many of the things I had told him about myself during our time together. This is always a nice touch when people can do this.
Whatever you thought of his business strategies, no one can deny he did really care for the club and was a nice man. One of David’s big business decisions was to appoint David Moyes the first time. He wanted to keep him on after this spell and was insistent that we brought him back.
It is well known in the board room, DG was Moyes’ biggest fan, and it is fair to say that this decision brought us two of the best years of being a West Ham fan in recent history. A lot of people have now lost patience with David Moyes and there have been many calling for his head, although I haven’t been one.
As I write this, his team have just beaten Brentford in the FA Cup and this should grant him at least the next two league games in charge against Wolves and Everton, which are both very winnable games. Of course, there are many negatives that could be rightly thrown at David Moyes’ management.
I think he has persisted for too long with underperforming players such as Tomas Soucek and Jarrod Bowen. I also think his substitute use can be limited and that he sets out too negative from the start. I also think he spends too much time respecting the opposition rather than focusing on our strengths.
So why am I still in? It seems like I’m in the minority of West Ham fans that still want him to remain in charge. Firstly, the options ti replace him at this time of the season, don’t jump out to me and I look at Southampton and Wolves who changed their manager, Forest and Leicester who didn’t and actually the latter two have more form since.
Secondly, I think he has got enough in the bank still for us to stick by him that bit longer. This season was always going to be transitional, especially with Mark Noble leaving the dressing room for a period of time and with all the new foreign, never-played-in-England signings we had brought in.
I also believe he has been very unlucky with injuries. His main signing, and first signing of the window, Aguerd was ruled out until now. It’s no coincidence that we have looked a lot better these last two games with his return. Our other top centre back Kurt Zouma has been suffering all season with a knee injury but should be able to return and pair up with Aguerd soon as a partnership for the first time this season.
Any team would suffer losing their top centre back partnership. When you throw in the absence of another summer signing in Cornet, you can’t help but think luck has been against him a bit. I know first hand that the board want to give Moyes the chance to turn this round, and I believe at the very minimum he still has the Wolves and Everton games to do so.
Unless we are humiliated in those games, I think he will be here to February as well. The board want to avoid sacking him and so will try to avoid doing so.
I have noticed the support at away games has been great and I think this is what we all need to do. We are West Ham and we have been through difficult times before and we will in the future. Our support is crucial to the team and hopefully we can turn this round soon and still have a great season.
We are still in a European competition and the FA Cup. If we can go on a run in those and get a respectable season finish, there is still the potential this could be another memorable season.