Do you remember Michael Carroll? The 19-year-old chav who won almost £10million on the national lottery, and then blew it all in a drugs, hookers and gambling meltdown.
Well, that’s what West Ham are like.
It’s all very well being financially able to eat at the top table, but no amount of money can buy an understanding of how it works or earn you the respect you feel you’re entitled to.
Like most Premier League clubs, the Hammers are enjoying themselves with the absurd amount of money dropping into the club’s bank account from the Premier League’s new TV rights deal. However, the openness with which the Irons go about their transfer business is what makes them a laughing stock – amongst many other things.
The idea that they’re an elite club – which is different from being a big club, which they are – seems to be driving this bizarre tactic of openly commenting/tweeting about every failed transfer target.
Three bids made…
— West Ham United (@WestHamUtd) January 5, 2017
The Hammers aren’t an elite club – they aren’t even close – but they have this inferiority complex when it comes to Arsenal, Manchester United, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur; they have a sense of entitlement, they believe they should be part of the big boy discussions when it comes to football.
Back in the summer, when the comical double-act, West Ham’s very own Chuckle Brothers tribute, David Gold and David Sullivan openly said they’d bid/were pursuing the likes of Alexandre Lacazette, Christian Benteke and Michy Batshuayi, it seemed bizarre, foolish and embarrassing. Especially when the bids were miles short of what the club wanted and/or they had already joined a genuine elite club in Chelsea.
“We tried to get Tevez but he wanted £250,000 a week. In his last year at Juventus, he was great. But 250 grand a week?
“He’ll probably stay where he is now, but he doesn’t pay a lot of tax down there.
“All this business ‘I love West Ham.’ Well, it’s ‘I love West Ham if they give me 250 grand a week.’ So how much love is that for West Ham?
“I actually offered him 150 grand a week to come back, plus bonuses.
“I thought that was an incredible offer for someone who loves West Ham. It wasn’t a publicity stunt, I saw him being our No.1 striker.
“I was hoping he would reproduce what he did at Juventus a year ago. He was a fantastic player. But where do you draw the line with what you are prepared to pay?”
Such bids allow Sullivan and Gold to go down to their local Bridge club, every Sunday, and brag to their ‘friends’ about how the club they own has been used in the same sentence as Carlos Tevez, a three-time Premier League winner, a two-time Serie A winner and a Champions League winner.
With the opening of the January transfer window, it’s clear that the Hammers have not learnt any lessons from the summer, with £6million going in for Jermain Defoe – the only thing that will keep Sunderland in the Premier League meaning he’s actually ‘worth’ £80million- and, perhaps even more laughable, £3million going in for Robert Snodgrass.
Funniest thing about the whole bid for the Hull City playmaker, is the fact that the West Ham fans seem to think they’re better than him?
Robert Snodgrass? One pre match drink too many @davidgold mate. Have some water and food and we can all laugh about this tomorrow.
— Brad Pinard (@Brad_Pinard) January 6, 2017
Until the West Ham owners give up this embarrassingly, delusional stance, and accept they’re a club on the rise, rather than a club that has arrived, the Hammers will continue to provide all us non-Irons endless amusement.