Fresh Air

Author: . Published: at 9:28pm

by Jan Palonci @janpalonci

West Ham has just wrapped up an incredible transfer week. Although we did also pick up a couple of injuries, “that’s just typical West Ham”. This is the attitude that has loomed over our club since the infamous Payet departure, however the appointment of Manuel Pellegrini seems to have broken that downward spiral. The fans have stood up to The Board, and everyone has taken notice.

I am not your typical West Ham supporter. I was born in the Czech Republic, I was raised in South Florida, and have recently relocated to Portland Oregon. Many of my new friends seemed surprised when they learned I support the claret and blue. In an era of modern football where everyone blindly swears their allegiance to the Real Madrids and Barcelonas, West Ham may not be everyone’s first choice. Surely my life would be much easier if I just supported one of the “big clubs” in England. Yet this brings the question, are WHU still a small club? The recent signing of Issa Diop brings a sharp contrast to players like Tomas Repka, who is one of the reasons I support West Ham United today.

This past week has brought a lot of excitement to the club. It looks like we are signing all of the right players. Players like Anderson and Wilshere are the type of players we have always dreamed of signing. However if you look back in history, we’ve signed players like this in the past. When Dimitri Payet dominated the best teams in the Premier League “West Ham finally had a player to build on”. When Javier Hernandez was signed “we finally had a proper striker”. Now Felipe Anderson is being hailed as the marquee signing that will take us to the next level. Signing Anderson was important, but I believe the first signing of the summer could be the most important signature of West Ham’s modern history.

Manuel Pellegrini is the type of manager WHU has never had. This will be tough for some fans to admit, but The Board has delivered with his appointment. Finally we have a manager that has the respect of the owners, and can attract the top players in the game. The man that managed Real Madrid and guided Manchester City to a 9:0 aggregate victory over West Ham in the League Cup is now our own. Not only is he the reason we were able to attract the players this summer, he will also be the reason we can keep those players. Without a proper manager signing players like Anderson is useless because their frustrations with the club will grow and they will always leave us to chase bigger ambitions. Players like Carlos Tevez will give us one or two seasons and then move on. I remember the excitement of last summer. Zabaleta was to fix our right back problem, Hernandez was our 20+ goalscorer we needed, and between the posts we had England’s first choice goalkeeper. Life was good, we had a solid squad and were enthusiastic to repeat the success of the last season at the Boleyn. But without the right man to manage those players, West Ham’s history was doomed to repeat itself.

What we now have here is something special. It will be a significant season in shaping the future of the club. Under Pellegrini’s guidance we can unlock our player’s full potential. Our best striker will not be playing on the wing. Not only can we sign and keep talented players, but we can get the best from the players that are already at the club. Our players will improve, and the potential of players like Rice will be fully unlocked. The potential of this next season is massive, and if everyone can deliver it will be a turning point for the club. Pellegrini’s appointment puts West Ham in position to return to its former glory. This is the fresh air of optimism our club has needed after the past couple of seasons. The word “potential” has been a recurring theme of this article. We are not a big club, but are now acquiring the tools to become one. The dream that everyone was sold with the move to the London Stadium is not dead, and it’s time for everyone to get behind the club.

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