Filed: Sunday, 21st August 2011
By: Staff Writer
He may be loving life on the road but he's yet to smile at the Boleyn. Sam Allardyce rues his team's inability to see out a game - whilst slamming the match official for missing what he says were two clear-cut penalties...
Sam: you had a perfect start then you had a good comeback after Leeds' equaliser. You probably had at least two penalties. Three points thrown away, isn't it?
It's two points thrown away, exactly right - and right when you can do little or nothing about it, right at the end of a game of football. For me obviously it's extremely disappointing after - again - what has been a game that we've been in control of, they've been in control of; we have, they have. Then we've finally come back into the game, the last 15 or 20 minutes particularly; bringing the substitutes on, changing the shape, the way we played - [we] took control of the game again. You could arguably say we should maybe have finished it [by] getting the third to make it three-one.
But when you're two-one up, playing at home, you've got to take responsibility just to see the game out properly, not give the opposition a sniff. Unfortunately the opposition take chances, stop chasing you back. If they lose three-one it makes no difference to losing two-one, so they just stay up the field. So it's very important that you retain possession of the ball in the opposition half. We didn't do that, they loaded the box up and got the goal to make us all very disappointed.
We heard you say that you fear the players are a bit anxious playing at home?
Well it's always going to be the case when you do what we do. We've taken one point in two home games instead of three [points]. You know, you're in control of two games of football. One against Cardiff, it's 90 minutes [on the clock], 92nd minute - it's nil-nil, respect the point. [Today] it's two-one in the 90th minute, you've got possession of the ball, there's only three minutes on the board - see the game out in the opposition's half. Do whatever you need to do just to keep them there and don't put pressure on yourself.
Unfortunately we put pressure on ourselves on both of those occasions by our own lack of understanding at that stage of the game, what needs to be done at that stage of the game to make sure you get results - and that's where we've lacked the professionalism here.
Away from home hasn't been a problem, the opposition have never had a sniff of taking anything from the games at Doncaster and at Watford. But here, it just puts a fear factor in everybody before they turn up at the next home game. Everybody around the stadium is going to start getting edgy and nervous, the players will - and that makes life much more difficult for us to win a game.
What must be frustrating is that you've got so many experienced heads in there to deal with that?
Yes we have, but we haven't dealt with it very well in the first two games. I've already pointed it out to them last time, unfortunately we've let ourselves lose three very precious points in two home matches - and that gives us ten points instead of seven. That makes for a very good start up to now instead of...
Having won two games away, which is the hardest thing particularly with our away record, and being so comfortable and then to falter at home is just a great shame really. We've got to make it up somewhere, we've thrown three points away we've got to make up - and the only place we can make it up is next week at [Nottingham] Forest.
How do you go about changing that anxiety?
Well the anxiety will not go away until they win a game of football. So when that situation comes around again they've got to be organised and mentally strong [enough] to deal with it. And the best way to deal with it is to keep the ball off the opposition! We've got clever enough players to do that but we weren't clever enough today - or against Cardiff - to do it in the last throes of the game.
Like I said, away from home the opposition have ended up so demoralised by us they've just given up. Whereas today they threw a ball in the box; there had to be seven or eight Leeds players [up] at that stage, that was the problem. If we didn't let them get in that situation we'd probably end up winning two-one or probably popping another goal in because they've thrown caution to the wind at the end. But we gave them that one last chance, and they took it.
When one penalty decision goes against you it's difficult. When it's two...
I dislike it when majors [decisions] go against me in any way, shape or form and unfortunately two majors have gone against us today. It's a part of why we haven't won, it's not the ultimate part - that was ourselves, we were in control and should have won it - but it was a part of the game, at critical points and times.
We should have had, in the first half, two blatant penalties. I have seen them from our technology at half time and at full time so I'm speaking from strength. Nobody will convince me that they were anything but blatant penalties.
Have you spoken to the referee and aired your point of view?
Well that's up to me and them to discuss privately and for me to put in my report, but it is very disappointing when you see the referee not do what he's paid to do. And in this case - because I'm speaking from strength, [the referee's] not obstructed by a view, not obstructed by a player - there's no doubt that he's looking at the incident and making a judgemental decision very quickly and, unfortunately on two occasions, a wrong one.
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Decision on Cole and O'Neil due tomorrow [19th May 2013]
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Thanks for the memories [8th May 2013]
by White Magic
05:25PM 22nd Aug 2011
''Sam's comments were comical. Sure, the first incident should have been a penalty to West Ham for shirt pulling, but if the ref was thinking about it, he certainly wouldn't be inclined to blow his whistle in view of the theatrical swallow dive to the floor by the West Ham player, AFTER Kisnorbo had let go of his shirt.
The Cole incident was virtually impossible to call from the ref's position - even the TV cameras had to play it back from another angle to see that White didn't quite get a toe to the ball, but by far the most blatant penalty was Parker on White. The Leeds left back was clean through and only had to toe poke the ball past Green when Parker took him out without getting even close to the ball, which by the time he arrived, had gone. Had the penalty been given, a red card might also have been shown since he denied White a simple goal.
So the ref bottled it twice and for one, had a poor view. Leeds fully deserved the point and for the most part played the better football, with West Ham relying almost totally on high balls and corners, just like Bolton used to do when Sam Allardyce was there. ''
05:54AM 22nd Aug 2011
''I can't believe Sam thinks West Ham controlled most of that game. Leeds deserved no less than a draw; in my opinion a draw was a disappointment and two points dropped. Leeds have been on top in the last three games and only come away with four points.''
03:03AM 22nd Aug 2011
''Sam must have been watching a different game for those comments.''
01:21AM 22nd Aug 2011
''Big Sam forgot to mention his best striker was Kisnorbo, what game was he watching? His boys just had no finish today and were fortunate to be in front.''
08:15PM 21st Aug 2011
''Fair result in my book, Leeds controlled a lot of the game but West Ham will be in the top six come May 2012!''
08:01PM 21st Aug 2011
''What about the other penalty Leeds should have had? The fact Tomkins should have walked for persistent fouls? I think big Sam has been at the drink.''
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