soccernet blog
West Ham United
August 26, 2010
Posted by Billy Blagg on 08/26/2010

So the phone rings at Blagg Acres and it's the Editor of Soccernet; "Blagg, we want to whet the appetite of punters and get them to tune in to the live ESPN game on Saturday. 200 words by this afternoon. My desk 5pm. Get to it"

What can I say? This is the type of game I tend to ignore nowadays; a pointless - in all senses of the word - mismatch that makes me think wisfully of the 1970's when, despite the fact that when you left home to watch a match you were never sure what state you were going to come home in, there was at least some sense of a competition in the league. Now, there isn't so much a gap between those at the top of the Premier League and those at the bottom, it's more of a gaping chasm that makes the Grand Canyon look like a fissure.

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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