In a shock announcement that could have serious repercussions for all the other clubs in the Football League, West Ham United issued a statement on Tuesday in which, effectively, they have revealed that absolutely nothing has changed. Avram Grant is still manager, Martin O'Neill is not coming, everything that has been written about the Hammers over the past week is utter nonsense and Karren Brady has been misquoted; I'm not sure if the full text of the announcement also revealed that Saint Bobby Moore is still sadly deceased, Sir Trevor Brooking is still retired and 'Pop' Robson is no longer scoring 28 goals a season, but I think we can take that as read.
"The entire board is 100% behind Avram," David Sullivan has told ESPNsoccernet. "He is a really decent person who deserves our support."
"West Ham United is a club that does the right thing and the right thing at this time is to support the manager. We will do all we can to bring in players over the next 12 days and once we have achieved that we hope it will keep us up. I urge all supporters to rally behind the club at this difficult time."
It seems that rumours that Martin O'Neill had grave concerns about his involvement in the replacement of Avram Grant and how it would be perceived by media and people within football as undermining a decent man, may have an element of truth although doubtless even the inkling that Grant was due to be replaced will probably be denied along with everything else in this Year Zero scenario.
One truth that surely emerges from this whole sorry mess though is the one that makes West Ham appear a club in almost terminal decline. Stuttering performances like the one against Arsenal, are light-years away from the type of gutsy attempts to redress the balance of the Premier Lague table being offered by the likes of Blackpool and Wolves currently. I'm not claiming that everything can be laid at the feet of Mr Grant - regular readers will know how poorly I received news that Gold, Sullivan and Brady had moved into the boardroom - and at least some of the current mess has reverberations from the distasteful sacking of Gianfranco Zola and the dismantling of the project put into place over the three preceeding years by the Icelandic group. And let's not forget how the whole Icelandic structure was brought crashing down by world events that even the most far-sighted failed to see - the huge mountain of debt at Upton Park surely being part of the reason the squad is so threadbare.
Nevertheless though, the fans and boardroom of the club have now turned to Avram Grant to save the season and the immediate future of West Ham - odd how this news somehow now looks like something not previously thought of - and we can only hope he is given some money to sign the striker we have desperately needed for over two years.
May I also suggest that Karren Brady returns to her role as Alan Sugar's lapdog and stops writing spurious and badly written junk for a newspaper - I don't have a job currently Karren let me do it eh? - and the whole board just get on with doing what they are supposed to be doing and fending off the hordes of rampaging Spurs supporters encroaching on Stratford and trying to stop this club from being relegated. As for Avram - let's wish him luck eh? If the soap opera that is Eastenders claret and blue style weaves its normal course I expect the Israeli to guide us to a respectable mid-table position, win the Carling and FA Cup and then resign on principle.
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