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West Ham United
March 25, 2009
Posted by Billy Blagg on 03/25/2009

If Blackburn fans were looking to gain three easy relegation-busting points against a team that looked tired and jaded just five days before, then they obviously hadn't looked at the past meetings between these two sides.

To say that West Ham are Blackburn's bogey side is an understatement and, with wins by the Lancashire side against the Hammer's about as rare as hen's teeth, some people might look at the territorial advantage gained by the home side in this match and opine that the curse had struck again.

March 18, 2009
Posted by Billy Blagg on 03/18/2009

West Ham United, the board and fans, were rocked again yesterday with the news that Soccernet and WestHamOnline self-styled pundit Billy Blagg, is set to sue the club for an undisclosed sum following the two years wrangling over the Carlos Tevez affair.

This follows earlier news that ex-Sheffield United boss Neil 'Nice Guy' Warnock, several United players who suffered the pains of relegation in 2007 and Leeds supremo 'Cuddly' Ken Bates, were considering their own legal actions against the East London club.

March 17, 2009
Posted by Billy Blagg on 03/17/2009

Aargghh! I knew I shouldn't have stuck me head up over the parapet.

No sooner had I suggested the whole mess may be over than we hear that the poor Sheffield players who were relegated when West Ham won at Manchester United on the last day of the season in 2007, may well be pursuing their own claim for compensation. Worse still, that bastion of all that is good at football - Neil Warnock - is said to be considering starting his own claim against the Hammers.

March 16, 2009
Posted by Billy Blagg on 03/16/2009

West Ham and Sheffield United have brought an end to the Carlos Tevez saga by agreeing an out-of-court settlement for compensation.

The two clubs have been in dispute ever since Tevez helped secure the Hammers' Premier League status at the Blades' expense in 2007. However, with the affair having dragged on for almost two years a conclusion to the matter has finally been found.

The figures for the final compensation package differ depending on what newspaper you read, but most seem to believe the final total to be in the region of £15million spread over five seasons.

The agreement now means that the independent tribunal which was due to reconvene this week will no longer proceed.

In a joint statement, West Ham chief executive Scott Duxbury and Sheffield United chairman Kevin McCabe said: "Both clubs are pleased to announce that a satisfactory settlement for compensation has been reached which brings the dispute between Sheffield United and West Ham United to an end. The tribunal will not be resuming."

Posted by Billy Blagg on 03/16/2009

Good grief! Just how bad was this? I fully expect to see a new dictionary definiton of 'poor' appearing in the standard Oxford next year; it will read simply WHU 0 WBA 0 - 16th March 2008.

There was no excitement, no shots, no atmosphere and nowhere to hide. Both sides seemed content to come away with a point and I'm not sure if this says less about the Hammers than the Baggies. West Ham can claim to have been seriously understrength with injuries and suspensions but even that doesn't excuse the lack of urgency and the constant back passes to Robert Green.

March 6, 2009
Posted by Billy Blagg on 03/06/2009

I won't waste your time with this one as I only saw some brief highlights on Match of the Day, and the chief concerns on that viewing were a superbly worked West Ham goal that ultimately won the match, and some appalling tackling and crazy referring decisions that seemed to puzzle just about everyone apart from match ref Stuart Atwell.

In a nasty game that threatened to spill over on several occasions both Scott Parker and Lucas Neill could count themselves lucky to finish the game on the pitch while Carlton Cole, dismissed for a second bookable when his high leg collided with Boyce's low head, could justifiably ask if that, or the earlier booking for a late tackle, deserved so much as a yellow.

March 2, 2009
Posted by Billy Blagg on 03/02/2009

A poll on the WestHamOnline site surprisingly revealed that an overwhelming majority of fans thought West Ham would lose this game. The Hammer's recent poor form may have something to do with it; then again City's abysmal away record suggested the run must end somewhere – and that somewhere was more than likely to be Upton Park (we have a record of this type of thing!).

More likely though was the fact that the Hammers faced that hardiest of foe; the sold striker coming back to wreak havoc on his old club and, being as Bellamy had an excellent record against his former clubs - and there are now a helluva lot of 'em - the fans seemed to fear the worst.

Billy Blagg Born at an early age a mere defenders' spit from the Boleyn ground, Billy Blagg has seen every West Ham game from 1898 onwards. Blagg was mentioned by Kenneth Wolstenholme in 1966 as one of the people on the pitch during the famous Hammers win over West Germany that lifted the World Cup and he returned to the pitch again for the 1975 FA Cup Final but stayed on the terrace for 1980 FA Cup victory. Blagg, 26, now lives with his eighth wife and innumerable children in a small semi-detached with chintz curtains in Dagenham, Essex and still attends every Hammers match and training session.

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