Guest Post

Why has it all gone wrong this season? The January transfer window? The Summer transfer window? Or something else?

A precise definition of the mythical ‘West Ham Way’ is something that has baffled scientists and football fans since long before James Collins could even grow facial hair.

But one phrase that definitely fits it quite well is ‘never doing things the easy way.’ And if West Ham are to survive in the Premier League this season – by no means a given – then they will certainly not have done it the easy way, and much of that will be self-inflicted.

In the Pub Talk section of the new edition of “Blowing Bubbles”:http://www.blowing-bubbles.co.uk/read-our-latest-issue.html , the magazine’s writers put their heads together to try and work out where it has all gone so – well, meh – this season, and Emily Pulham points her finger directly at the January transfer window as a prime example of how to make a bad situation worse.

“We keep selling players and ending transfer windows with less players than we started with,” she said. “We sold our joint top scorer to a relegation rival. We sold a centre back outside the transfer window and didn’t bother to replace him. We don’t even have a full team sheet, and it’s not helped by David Moyes making poor team selections from what’s left. We’re not future proofing the team, we are frogmarching towards relegation.”

David Meagher says the fact that the transfer window is being looked at to fix problems tells its own story.

“When you are relying on January to solve problems then you are in real trouble as unless you splash big money, most of the time you are taking another club’s problems. Our performance in the transfer window over the last two seasons has been terrible, and the proposed change in our transfer team is much needed.”

To read more from the pub talk crew, including their views on Andre Ayew and Jordan Hugill, pick up a copy of the new edition of Blowing Bubbles out now. There you will find exclusive columns from former Irons legends Phil Parkes and George Parris, the latest news from the increasingly tetchy stand-off between fans and the club’s owners, find out what the future holds in store for the Bobby Moore statue, and in a startlingly honest interview, Kieron Dyer explains why he will probably go down in history as West Ham’s worst ever signing.

All this and more can be found in the latest edition of Blowing Bubbles – “Out now”:http://www.blowing-bubbles.co.uk/read-our-latest-issue.html

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Events

Run, Ronnie, Run: Celebrity Charity Match In Aid Of Three-Year-Old Hammer

Ronnie Leys is a three-year-old boy from Saffron Walden – he is a keen sportsman, attending swimming lessons, weekly dance and music lessons and is a member of ‘Cambridge in the Community’ cerebral palsy football team. Football is without doubt Ronnie’s biggest passion and one of the many reasons behind his incredible journey and progression to date.

Ronnie was not a premature baby but born at 40 weeks and two days after a huge struggle during birth with many complications along the way. He suffered a brain haemorrhage during his ordeal and, as a result, a bleed to his brain – when he thought he had had everything thrown at him, Ronnie had a seizure on his first night. He spent the first 16 days of his life in the care of Addenbrookes Hospital and continued to show his fight and determination to start what would be a very challenging life.

Ronnie was diagnosed with cerebral palsy when he was two but the signs beforehand had pre-warned his parents, West Ham-supporting Steve and Clare, of this formality. Ronnie (pictured with his Dad, alongside his Mum and brother Frankie) continued to fight on and his self-belief and determination enabled him to do anything he wanted to do with nothing holding him back. Ronnie was a late developer with walking, starting at two years and two months. Steve and Clare have accepted that an operation known as Selective Dorsal Rhizotomy (SDR) is their next and only remaining option which would help Ronnie walk independently and change his life for the better.

Sadly, this operation isn’t available on the NHS. Ronnie would also need a minimum of 18 months physiotherapy and rehabilitation. Steve and Clare have organised a celebrity charity football match in the hope of reaching their £30,000 fundraising target to pay for Ronnie’s operation which would allow him to walk independently.

The charity football match will be at Bishop’s Stortford FC’s ProKit UK Stadium on Saturday 5th May, with Ronnie’s ‘Run, Ronnie, Run Celebrity XI’ playing Saffron Walden Town FC Legends. Celebrities confirmed so far include former Hammers Kevin Horlock and Luke Chadwick.

Mike Hassini, from The Only Way Is Essex, and Simon Searles, contestant in Love Island 2017, have also confirmed they will be playing in the match. Gogglebox and Celebrity Big Brother star George Gilbey and two professional boxers, Mitchell Smith and Sammy McNess, have also agreed to play. A raffle will be held at half-time, with gifts secured from former Hammers Bobby Zamora and Neil Ruddock, and cricketer Monty Panesar.

Che Chesterman will be singing Beyonce and Naughty Boy’s ’Runnin’, which has been chosen as Ronnie’s campaign song, as the players walk out and he is also playing in the match. Steve Leys, Ronnie’s father, said:

“The operation costs are £20,000 and Ronnie will require extreme physiotherapy daily until he recovers fully. We are looking for £30,000 altogether which covers the operation, after-care at the hospital, accommodation and physiotherapy sessions.”

Tickets for the charity football match are £5 and available from the Saffron Walden Tourist Information Centre. Entry is free for Under-5s.

More than £15,000 has been raised so far – donations can be made by texting FITE67 and any amount to 70070 or by clicking here.

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Guest Post

Minutes of WHUISA's Meeting With David Sullivan

Guest Post by WHUISA Committee

David Sullivan approached WHUISA and invited them to a meeting after events leading up to and including the Burnley match on 10th March. We accepted his offer since it would give WHUISA members the opportunity to start having their issues addressed directly by Mr Sullivan. To ascertain what our members’ more pressing questions were and appreciating the meeting would be time limited, we circulated a list of questions to our members asking them to vote for their preferred options. 1,176 responses were received and a breakdown of these results of the survey may be found at the end of the minutes hyperlinked below.

You can view the minutes of WHUISA’s meeting with David Sullivan by clicking here.

You can become a member of WHUISA for £1 by clicking here.

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Guest Post

George Parris: "We're going to regret not bringing in enough bodies in January - We only have ourselves to blame"

The closing of the January transfer window meant the cards West Ham now hold are the ones they must play until the end of the season – and former Irons defensive legend George Parris is worried by that prospect.

Writing in his column in the latest edition of “Blowing Bubbles magazine”:http://www.blowing-bubbles.co.uk/read-our-latest-issue.html , Parris reveals the club has left itself alarmingly short of options after another disappointing window.

“I was hoping to see one or two more bodies arrive in January because I feel like we need them to boost the squad,” he said. “New players always give the squad a boost because they bring new enthusiasm and energy that rubs off on everyone else. With the likes of Diafra Sakho, Andre Ayew and Jose Fonte leaving and not really being replaced like for like, I’m worried we’ve left ourselves too short.

“It’ll be fine when everyone returns from injury but in recent seasons we’ve not been too lucky when it comes to injuries and it’ll only need one or two and suddenly we will be back to the bare bones.”

Elsewhere in his column, Parris talks about what the club needs to do to ensure the end of season run-in does not get too close for comfort.

Another club legend writing exclusively for Blowing Bubbles, Phil Parkes, also airs his views about the end of season situation, and has plenty to say on the current strained relationship between fans and the club’s owners.

Blowing Bubbles’ regular team of writers weigh in with their opinions on topics ranging from the Tony Henry scandal and the signing of Patrice Evra to how the club can win fans back, and what the future should hold for defensive lynchpin James Collins. And in a shocking interview that you won’t want to miss, Kieron Dyer is unhesitatingly honest when talking about his own ill-fated West Ham career, the position the club is in now, and the dark secret that haunted his playing career.

All this and more can be found in the latest edition of Blowing Bubbles magazine – “Out now”:http://www.blowing-bubbles.co.uk/read-our-latest-issue.html

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Guest Post

Phil Parkes: "I thought we were going to save our season this month - not destroy it!"

As a two-time FA Cup winner and member of the Boys of 86, legendary Irons goalkeeper Phil Parkes knows all about having plenty to play for at the end of the season – but he fears that this is what could happen to the class of 2018 as well, but not in a good way.

Writing exclusively for “Blowing Bubbles magazine”:http://www.blowing-bubbles.co.uk/ , Parkes admits he is worried by the club’s current predicament, and that the fixture list may not have done them any favours this month.

“At the start of March, I felt three more wins would be enough to keep us up but now it’s going to be tight. Fighting for your lives to stay in the league is a horrible position to be in.”

Parkes has strong opinions about the current strained relationship between fans and the club’s owners, which he does not shy away from sharing, and says everything else should take a backseat to ensure the team stays in the Premier League.

As well as Parkes’ views, former team-mate George Parris gives his take on the current state of things at the London Stadium in his regular column, and Blowing Bubbles’ team of reporters bring you the latest news on all things claret and blue, including an assessment of this winter’s transfer comings and goings – or the lack of them – the future of the Bobby Moore statue, how to repair the damage of the Tony Henry scandal, and how Michail Antonio can recover the form that has made him such a big success in recent years.

All of this and a brutally honest interview with former Irons midfielder Keiron Dyer – and why he thinks he will go down as the worst signing in club history – can be found in the latest edition of Blowing Bubbles magazine, “Out now”:http://www.blowing-bubbles.co.uk/

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