Match Reports 1999-2000 - West Ham (a)
West Ham 2 Newcastle United 1
Date: 12th April 2000, 19:45pm
Venue: Upton Park
Conditions: Noah would have felt at home....
Kit: Normal home.
NUFC: Given, Barton, Hughes, Dabizas
(Howey 50 mins), Goma, Domi, Solano, Speed, Dyer (Ketsbaia 86mins), Lee, Shearer
WHFC: Forrest, Ferdinand, Ruddock (Wanchope 53 mins), Stimac
(Margas 78 mins), Keller (Charles 53 mins), Minto, Lampard, Cole, Foe, Kanoute, Di Canio
Referee: Paul Allcock - yet another homer. Couldn't have favoured 'Arry's 'Appy 'Ammers more if he'd come dressed as a pearly king. Or queen. Or Dirty Den.
This was the first time he'd been on the same pitch as Paulo Di Loonio since the infamous "over you go" incident at Hillsborough. by the end of the game, wor Bobby would gladly have pushed him over...if only he could have got the team coach down the players tunnel.
47 mins. Speed. 1-0
60 mins. Wanchope. 1-1
89 mins. Wanchope. 1-2
Bare facts: played like warriors for 45 mins, should have scored at least two, home side never in it, our best away performance of the season. Scored too early in second, relaxed and had to make change when Dabizas limped off. Dyer crocked and faded, Solano disappeared. Wanchope perked up quiet crowd and team, gets equaliser and we go missing in midfield. Point looks likely until late winner for them.
I must confess that I'm so p*d off with another late capitulation by the boys, that to give an honest assessment of the evening would be opening a window on the soul, that would neither be enjoyable or educational.
Instead of my deranged ramblings, here's someone else for a change to bring some fresh eyes (whilst sticking to the no-relevance rule of waffle)
NB: regular toon watchers should not be offended by the following: totally unprompted impressions of the night from an Aussie who'd never been to football before, and paid 31 notes to sit in the rain and watch us hoy it away. Again.
And before Mr P.Edantic of Coxhoe writes, he didn't take the ticket of a loyal supporter, because not enough of them bothered to show up to fill our section. Therefore he made our following look less bad, in a twisted way of thinking.....
"T'was a wee shiite nite in London's east end to watch football but nevertheless, being a football virgin, tonite was me nite to go all da wey.
Neill and I met other Newcastle fans for a few cheeky beers at The Good Samaritan in Whitechapel (For those of you who have not been to Whitechapel, the monopoly board sums it up - don't buy, its worth f*ck all, and you certainly wouldn't put property on it!) But Newcastle United's die-hard fans gathered there before every West Ham game. We grabbed a round of beers and met the lads. At my end of the table I was fortunate enough to sit in between Newcastle's intellectual elite, Neill and another guy who's name escapes me, but is an accountant (Andy).
Looking back now and comparing Neill and the bean counter to the rest of the Newcastle fans at the match, I'm convinced that these are the only two Geordies that have escaped the clutches of the northern toon with any form of education, much less a degree. At the other end of the table was Michael, a large and passionate man that dominated conversation with his vast knowledge of the club. I quickly tuned out of this conversation due to the unavailability of subtitles.
We arrived at the West Ham ground with minutes to spare and found our seats. Neill then proceeded to shake the hand of every other Geordie around us who was wearing the familiar black and white strip. I was sceptical if a game with three conversions entire in 90 minutes would hold my attention (considering I'm used to a game in which the score line usually resembles Carlton 15-12 102 df Collingwood 10-8 68) but surprisingly it did.
What did hold my attention was the mantra of the fans.
We sang this one:
Geordie boys, we are here
Shag your daughters, drink your beer.
We are the Geordies, the cock of the North
We hate the Sunderland and Boro of course
We all drink Whisky and Newcastle Brown
The Geordie boys are in Town.
And this one:
We are the Geordies, the Geordie Boot Boys,
And we are mental, and we are mad,
We are the loyalist, football supporters,
The World has ever had,
we are the Geordies......ad infinitum.
And plenty of this one:
Black n White army.....toon toon ....Black n White army....toon toon
I left the match with a voice that was hoarse, toes that needed defrosting and in desperate need of a shower to clean the saliva from the back of my head courtesy of the 'Sad Cockney' who sat behind me and spoke another language (I don't think they have speech therapists in Newcastle).
Unfortunately I did not come away from the game with a win, as the score line read 2-1 in favour of the home team, but if I'm going to support Newcastle, I may as well get used to losing. Suppose its a bit like following Collingwood really.
Toon toon toon toon.
Biffa, with waffle from Aussie Danny Peters.