Over the years many players have served their time wearing the famous claret and blue shirt with true dignity. However, there have also been players that were not fit to wear the shirt worn by many legends of the club. Under Harry Redknapp, West Ham signed any player that was going cheaply, under Alan Curbishley the club signed over rated and over priced players and finally, under Glenn Roeder, Gianfranco Zola and Avram Grant the club signed Sunday League standard players. This article will list five players that were not fit to wear the famous claret and blue shirt.
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5. Savio Nsereko
Savio was signed by Zola during the Gianluca Nani project. He was signed to replace Craig Bellamy in the 2009 winter transfer window for a reported £9m plus add-ons from Italian side Brescia. The club told the fans that they had signed Savio from under the noses off many European giants, making the fans believe that West Ham have signed a gem. This statement must have been false because Savio looked out of depth and too weak for the Premier League as he struggled to make any impression at all. He made a total of eleven appearances for the club, making one start and failed to score any goals in the claret and blue shirt. The following season he was sold to Fiorentina for an undisclosed fee with Manuel da Costa going the other way as part of the deal.
4. Nigel Quashie
Curbishley bought Quashie from West Bromwich Albion for £1.5m to help the club avoid relegation during the 2006-2007 season. The fee would have risen to £1.75m if the club avoided relegation. The problem with this signing was that Quashie had
built up a reputation of being a player that always managed to get relegated. He had previously been in a relegated side three times and many fans and pundits questioned the signing. Curbishley stated he had bought Quashie for his vast experience. Paul
Merson on Sky Sports joked “experience of relegation is the only experience he can bring to West Ham”. He made eight appearances for West Ham and they failed to win any of these games. The club avoided relegation and Quashie broke his relegation curse, even though he did not contribute in West Ham’s survival bid. After that season Quashie did not make another appearance in the claret and blue again.
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3. Marco Boogers
Harry signed Boogers from Dutch side Sparta Rotterdam in 1995 hoping to solve West Ham’s terrible goal scoring record. In his second appearance for the club he was sent off at Old Trafford for assaulting Gary Neville. Boogers then went back to Holland during his suspension, allegedly in a caravan. The caravan story developed into an urban myth when a journalist misheard the club call reporter’s statement about Booger’s travel plans. The journalist heard ‘caravan’ instead of ‘car again’ when asked about Boogers whereabouts. The next day the newspaper headline read that Boogers is living in a caravan. Boogers made a few more appearances for West Ham before returning back to Holland permanently (not in a caravan). After he left Harry described him as an awful player and thought he was world class when he saw him in a video.
2. Benni McCarthy
Literally speaking McCarthy was not fit at all to wear the West Ham shirt. He was signed by Zola hoping he could score enough goals to keep West Ham up during the 2009-2010 season. How McCarthy passed his medical is the question most West Ham
fans would like to know because he was simply too overweight for a professional football player. He was nicknamed Big Mac because of his size and he was simply too fat to put on any football shirt let alone West Ham’s shirt. He made a total of eleven
appearances for the club and he failed to score any goals. The club were so desperate to off load him that they even offered him £1.5m to terminate his contract. McCarthy agreed and rumour has it he went straight to the local McDonalds with his new pay cheque.
1. Gary Breen
Free agent Breen was signed by Roeder on a free transfer after Breen’s impressive performances for the Republic of Ireland during the 2002 World Cup. However, his performances for West Ham were far beyond a World Cup standard player. His awful
displays in claret and blue effectively relegated West Ham during the 2002-2003 season. Against Manchester United at Old Trafford in the third round of the F.A Cup, West Ham were hammered 6-0 and Breen was at fault for majority of the goals. After the game he was involved in a bust-up with Roeder because of his poor performance.
Breen blamed the wet turf at Old Trafford for his shocking display, whereas no other player had a problem with the surface. Breen only made a total of 18 appearances for the club and was sold after he and Roeder did they utmost best to get the club relegated.
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