Newly promoted West Ham’s season started brightly, taking 18 points from their first 11 games. There were no serious moments of anxiety throughout the whole season really – West Ham continued to get results throughout the term, at most having to wait 4 league games for a win.
They scored consistently just above 1 goal per game throughout the season, with and without Carroll in the team. They generally defended well too, apart from a few blips away from home around the start of 2013 where they conceded 3 at goal-shy Sunderland then 5 more at Arsenal and another 3 at Fulham.
The Hammers’ record on the road was well short of their good home form. In fact only Everton had a bigger disparity between their home and away points total. West Ham’s goal difference was incredibly +12 at home, -20 away.
A higher than average team height and weight, aided by the 1.93m tall Carroll and the improbably heavy Guy Demel at 88kg (Whoscored.com). Allardyce had more players than average at his disposal over 1.82m and he generally fielded 1 more than the opposition too.
West Ham’s squad, in general, remained injury-free and available for most of the season – as shown by the first chart above, where about 8 players managed over 2400mins in the league. Jääskeläinen, Nolan, Reid, O’Brien and Diamé played the most minutes onfield. Carroll and Noble each played about 2000mins – not disastrous – but both contributed very well when they did play so were indeed missed when unavailable.
- Involved in 1472 aerial duels (3rd highest), with the 2nd best win ratio (55%)
- 3rd most headed clearances (788)
- 3rd fewest touches on the ball (20658)
- Highest total goalkeeper saves (166)
- 2nd most yellow cards (74) but =least for red cards (1)
- More attempted crosses than any other team (1013) with best accuracy: 27%
- 14th in the list of total long balls attempted
Despite playing relatively few minutes, it’s hard to overlook the contributions of Noble and Carroll to the team when they played, illustrated by the TPOEM man of the match awards as noted below:
|Player||Minutes Played||Team MoM||Overall MoM|
Noble’s contribution as a DM was not dissimilar to Carrick’s contribution to Man Utd and Schneiderlin’s to Southampton – certainly in the top 10 of the league.
Reid also played very well, and was named the club player of the year, which I won’t argue with. Actually West Ham are one of the few teams whose full backs have worse performance scores than the centre backs, which is likely to be a result of them venturing forward less than average. And Jarvis didn’t catch the eye of TPOEM at all – not to say he had a bad season per se – he can probably take some of the credit (shared with Nolan/Carroll) for West Ham’s good crossing accuracy, but little else!
Wish list for Allardyce this summer? A replacement for Carroll (or the big man himself) is paramount and why not a more penetrative player who can improve on the current full backs or wide midfielders.