I was down the pub with friends and family before our game at Sunderland and had a conversation regarding the Roy Keane/Patrick Vieira documentary. I personally would have picked Keane just because he was everything a Captain should be! Oh don’t worry, this isn’t another Nolan witch hunt! No comments on the current bile.
I loved the fact he literally put the team in front of personal goals for Man Utd i.e. Champions League Final. However, I don’t agree with intentionally hurting another player but they clearly had personal issues! Anyways, so as the documentary went on, Keane picked Paul Parker over Gary Neville and then believe this or not, there was no room for Scholes or Giggs in his XI either!! It isn’t over a period but on that players day. I for one, find this staggering but then that’s the whole point of football!! Everyone has their own opinion!
So within the group we selected our favourite all time West Ham XI. I will say now the age group ranged from a recent 65 (sorry dad) to 27, no sadly not me! So, of course there was a lot to debate! I sadly never saw Bobby Moore play live so I can’t pick him. It has to be someone you actually saw, not heard about!! This brought me to thinking why don’t you suggest any or agree/disagree with ours! Don’t forget everyone has different opinions! And for different reasons!
So in goal, I picked the big man Ludek “Ludo” Miklosko, no not because of the song but I thought he was a smashing goalie. He was bought for just £300k and the guy was a man mountain. Others that came up were Calamity James, Phil Parkes or Merv Day, Rob Green, Shaka Hislop and even Bernard Lama…courtesy of my brother. I know!
Right Back: I really liked Seb Schemmel, I thought that first season he had over the Boleyn he was great, then bizarrely he went off the rails. My other, who now on reflection, I would go with was Steve Potts. What a servant he was to the club, not prolific in front of goal though with just the one against Hull. He even coaches the Under 18’s now plus has a black cab licence too, thanks to Tom Staples for that knowledge! Others mentioned were, Tim Breacker, another who gave 100% without an abundance of talent and Tonka (Ray Stewart), now he could hit a penalty! He was very close to being picked.
Left Back: Only one for me…Julian, Julian, Julian!!! Julian Dicks, he has to be most peoples favourite too surely!! Even my dad picked him over guys like Lampard Senior. The “Terminator” as he was called for his hardman ways scored 50 goals in 262 games for us and none better was the penalty against Peter Schmeichel at the Boleyn Ground.
Centre Backs: Here starts the real argument… Bobby would always be in the team! But like I say I didn’t see him. So I have to go with Bonzo and Alvin Martin. But that excludes top players like Tony Gale, Rio Ferdinand, Slaven Billic, Super Thomas Repka and more recently Gary Breen…oops only joking! My dad picked Bobby and I’m just so jealous and gutted I never saw him live.
Wingers: There have been a few suggestions here namely Alan Devonshire, Stuart Slater, Matt Etherington, Michael Hughes, Mark Ward, Kevin Keen and Stan Lazarides and Joe Cole but for me I’m going to go with two Trevor’s – Sinclair and of course Sir Brooking. I thought these two were brilliant.
Centre Midfielders: One for me has to be Scott Parker, I thought the guy was immense for us in the three years or so he was with us. His only blotch on his name was that he joined the scum across North London! The other isn’t as easy to choose from as we have had good players like John Moncur, Frank Lampard, Eyal Berkovic and Steve Lomas. However, for me it has to be Mark Noble. Some will disagree with this naturally but the passion and the fight he shows is why he is my current captain in my opinion.
Then I come to the hardest part for me as I was a forward myself by trade. I’m over six feet tall so I favour guys like Dean Ashton and John Hartson. Both were my favourite players when they were in the team. I also appreciated the goalscorers such as Tony Cottee and Carlos Tevez. But for me it has to be my two favourite West Ham players of all time…Super Frank McAvennie and Paolo Di Canio.
I hope you have enjoyed this, feel free to disagree because that’s what makes football so universally loved, everyone has a different opinion!