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View From The Opposition - Crystal Palace
Vinny 21 Aug 2014

View from the Opposition – Crystal Palace

Next for West Ham is a trip to Crystal Palace who are a side that have just lost their manager and their outlook on the season has just taken a turn for the worse.

I had a number of emails offering up Crystal Palace fans (for this piece, not a sacrifice) so with that we have THREE Crystal Palace supporters taking part this week. Yes, there are really that many.

All questions come from the members of WHO.

The supporters are Kraig Baldwin, Sean Sullivan and Dan Ablett. Many thanks to all three for helping out.

Do you think Pulis leaving is the beginning of the end?

: I hope not, what he achieved with us last year was incredible, but I do feel the team have learned from him and take that with them this season.

Sean: Certainly wasn't ideal, but really depends on who the next manager is. At writing this, Sherwood is the bookies favorite, and I am sure we'd be relegation candidates with him in charge. I think experience is important at this level.

Dan: It is merely a blip on an otherwise upward trajectory, or maybe last season was a very high bounce. I don't think we will beat the 11th of last season. Though I am not sure Pulis would have done that either. As for the end, there is never an end on the Palace rollercoaster. When you have seen your team hours from extinction you just take each day as it comes.

If Allardyce were available right now, would you take him?

Simple answer no, as soon as it was announced that Pulis had left I messaged my friend saying we need to find a replacement before you guys sack him.

Sean: No. I'd rather put a campfire out with my face than have Fat Sam as manager! His style of football doesn't inspire anyone.

Dan: Ha ha ha ah ha ha ha ha ha. I've seen enough terrible hoofball in my years at Selhurst. Why would I want to subject myself to the ultimate hoofballer!!?? I'd rather have Trevor Francis back.

With Pulis leaving due to Parish interfering on transfers, who is worse Jordan or Parish and why do they have similar haircuts?

Was he interfering? Parish has shown nothing but support to the manager, it was just unfortunate that the players didn’t want to sign for us. Jordan is far worse, he was outspoken and orange not a good combination. Parish took us from administration to the premier league he can’t really do too much wrong. Perhaps to be a successful business man in South London you require blonde swishy hair or perhaps it is just a coincidence.

Sean: I don't think Parish was interfering with transfers as such. He doesn't want to overspend as he knows that it's a slow building process to get this club to Premier League standard. Palace fans remember that he was one of four people that saved the club from folding, so for that Palace fans will always be grateful. Regarding who's worse out of Jordan and Parish, I would have to say Jordan was less professional.

Dan: Both saviours of our club, but very different people. Jordan could start a row in an empty Director's Box. Parish is far less hotheaded. At times Jordan's principles went against the best of the club, but were perfectly logical, rallying against agents for instance. I don't think Parish has meddled as accused, though if he has I don't blame Pulis for leaving. As for the haircuts. Well, they are just a shame. I think it may be in the Chairman's contract. Rumours of a joint takeover bid by Robbie Savage and Brad from Neighbours are completely unfounded!

Over the past ten years, you have had eight permanent managers. Who was your most favourite?

It would have to be Dougie Freeman I was a big fan of his growing up and to see him become manger was great, he did lose a bit of respect when he left us for Bolton but since he has been so woeful there he is forgiven.

Sean: Regarding success it would have to be Pulis, but for relating with the fans, then it's got to be West Ham's favourite Neil Warnock. He really embraced what the club was about. We were all gutted to see him leave. Dougie Freedman was a fans favourite, but left on such bad terms for Bolton. Somewhere I'm guessing a lot of your fans wish your current manager would return to!!

Dan: So many to choose from. So many bad times.  Freedman became a traitor, Dowie became a traitor, Burley was awful, Holloway tried his best but it just wasn't enough, Warnock was a good one, I love Colin Wanker. Paul Hart deserves an honorable mention for keeping us up. I won't however mention Peter Taylor...although I just did. I think sadly I would have to say Pulis, for what he did last season. He has put us in an unbelievable position.

Crystal Palace only makes me think of Wright, Bright, Vince Hilaire and Terry Venables. What else is interesting?

We hold the record for the highest points total whilst being relegated from the premier league 49!

Sean: We would of been in the UEFA Cup in 1992 after finishing 3rd in the 90/91 season, if it weren't for UEFA allowing Liverpool back into Europe a season earlier than expected.

Dan: Our academy. Loads of quality players fed out into the premier league. From Southgate onwards. Zaha, Routledge, Watson, Moses, Jonny Williams. Also we have our own beer Palace Ale brewed by Neil Morrissey. We also have an atmosphere. You can see it on Saturday. Maybe they can help you create one in your lovely new stadium.

How many weeks of practice does it take the Palace "ultras" to get their camp synchronized dance moves so perfect? Have the producers of Glee threatened your Ultras with copyright infringement?

Is that jealousy I hear? Have you forgotten what it’s like to have “real” support or are you just annoyed that you charge so much to watch football that the prawn sandwich brigade have moved in and taken the passion away?

Sean: We all meet up on Tuesday evenings at the Fairfield Halls for "Ultras Rehearsals". £20 membership and you get a free badge. Joking obviously! It has grown over the past few seasons, but has created a great atmosphere, which is more than can be said about a lot of other clubs.

Dan: Ahhh The Holmesdale Fanatics. I don't like the 'Ultras' tag they give themselves. It has to be said they have created an atmosphere beyond any ever seen in this horribly corporate league we suffer. Selhurst is widely known as the best atmosphere, from fans, pundits and commentators alike. Jealous?

What is Glee?

Given that Brighton and Charlton are your only real rivals, how much are you looking forward to playing them next season?

Where does this come from that Charlton are our rivals? They are clowns and nothing to us. You could end up down there too are you looking forward to playing the Neanderthals?

Sean: You think they're candidates to go up then I'm guessing? Would have no problem with them going up as we could do with 12 points. We hate Millwall as much as Charlton by the way.

Dan: If both Brighton and Charlton get promoted to the premier league next season then I think every Sky subscriber has every right to claim some of their subscription back.

Are you scared about playing a new attack minded West Ham?

Is that sarcasm? I’m more scared that it will be a complete borefest 0-0 draw.

Sean: Don't you need a striker though to finish off your beautiful Allardyce flowing attacks? Last I checked they were all hanging out at your local A&E.

Dan: Yes, just like I am scared of Unicorns and Santa Claus. I am however looking to one particular attack; I must be the only person never to have the live experience of a Kevin Nolan sending off.

How do you rate yourself against west ham? Bigger / smaller club? Better supported? Better prospects? Better team?

Smaller club, you have an incredible fan base and fill the ground whatever league you are in. I don’t know if I can say you have better support but it is better than most London clubs. Prospects this season I’d say you have an edge as a more established premier league club, Team wise we will see Saturday.

Sean: I love Palace but I know where we stand. You're definitely a bigger club, and considering I live in Essex, I know how far out West Ham fans stretch. I think your club is not going in the right direction and moving to the Olympic stadium is not embracing the great history of your club. Better team???? Hmm, when did you last beat us again?

Dan: West Ham are bigger. I can't deny that. They are better supported, I agree. Though If you remove all supporters with side partings and padded Barbour jackets then we have at least double the fanbase.

As for prospects, West Ham probably have more, and if the people keep buying up those dildos you may be able to pay off Andy Carroll's contract. Better team? No chance. We have a Jedinak.

Which West Ham player would you like in the Palace team?

: I’d say Morrison if wasn’t a complete basket case, but other than him I’d say Nolan as he’s solid and gives 100%.

Sean: Noble. Proper grafter. Can't stand show ponys. Diame's another player that I would welcome to the club.

Dan: Geoff Hurst. In his current state. 

Seriously, I do like Nolan, but Diego Poyet could be a sensation this season.

Was Mark Goldberg mental?

Yes he put his love for the club before common sense and lost it all, he now manages non-league Bromley Fc.

Sean: Probably yeah. His eyes were bigger than his pocket, and he got the club into a right mess. As much as Jordan is laughed by people outside the club, he did bail Goldberg out by keeping the club afloat. The problem always was the fact the club didn't own Selhurst Park. Thankfully we do now.

Dan: Naive. Which is never good when buying a football club. Seemingly a better mananger. He took Bromley the Conference South playoffs last season.

Your favourite crisp

Beef hula hoops.

Sean: Pickled Onion Monster Munch.

Dan: Worcester Sauce Wheat Crunchies. 

Prediction for the game.

1-0 Palace.

Sean: Think we'll win 1-0. Bolasie will have too much for you boys.

We score few we concede few. 1-0 (Chamakh). Again.

Many thanks to Kraig, Sean and Dan for their time.

Next up is Southampton, so if you know a Southampton fan who would like to take part, let me know.

Email: vinnywhufc@hotmail.com

Twitter: @vinnywhufc

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