After struggling to make himself a key player last season, with Matthew Upson and Manuel Da Costa hogging the centre back positions, James Tomkins has more than made up for that this time out. Now the first name on the team sheet, Tomkins has been stunning this campaign, leading the team without the armband and playing in midfield when needed, he was the outstanding candidate for this award.
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Young Player of the Year –Dan Potts
Although there wasn’t too many nominations in this area, Dan Potts proved a hit with theUpton Park crowd when filling in earlier this season with noticeable absentees George McCartney and Matty Taylor in the left back position inured. Potts has since dropped back into the youth and development squads and apparently continues to improve, a long term fix to a long term problem perhaps.
Signing of the Season – RicardoVaz Te
Although only signed in January, Ricardo Vaz Te has already become a huge fans favourite, mainly due to his trickery, pace and goals that have significantly helped Sam Allardyce’s turn around a stuttering run of form. Technically one of the top goalscorers in the division if you include his goals for Barnsley, a great contribution from a winger could be vital going into the play offs. Oh,and he was a bargain!
Worst Signing of the Season– Brian Montenegro, John Carew, George John
If we are honest, Mr Allardyce hasn’t been brilliant in the transfer market, especially when you state that he spent the second highest amount of money this summer in the division behind underachieving Leicester City. The likes of Kevin Nolan, Matty Taylor and Abdoulaye Faye have now settled in well but when you look at Brian Montenegro, John Carew and George John – no contribution at all! Worthless!
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Performance of the Season – WatfordAway 4-0
Right back at the start of the season morale was shot at Upton Park after an opening day defeat, but successive away wins at Doncaster and then this impressive display at Watford was a sign of things to come on the road for the Hammers. An early goal from James Tomkins and a brilliant solo effort from Joey O’Brien gave West Ham a deserved two goal lead at half time and that was followed up with Carlton Cole tapping home and an emotional late striker from Scott Parker in the second half to send the 3,000+ travelling support home happy. A terrific noise came from the away end for 90 minutes and it was the first time that Hammers had felt genuinely happy and optimistic for years!
Goal ofthe season – TopFive – you pick your favourite!
– Nicky Maynard v Barnsley away
– Kevin Nolan v Derby County home
– RicardoVaz Te (overhead kick) v Brighton home
– Jack Collison v Hull away
– Winston Reid v Millwall home
Biggest prospect for the future – Rob Hall
A few short loan spells this season has helped Rob Hall gain valuable mens football experience after playing much of his football at West Ham in the youth set up against kids of the same age. West Ham supporters had been impressed with Hall on his few appearances in the first team and David Gold has said that he is the man that he is most excited about in the coming years at Upton Park so watch this space!
Chant ofthe season – We’re winning abroad, We’re winning abroad, How sh*t must you be, We’re winning abroad – at Cardiff
A typical West Ham chant, embracing a rare victory and adding an edge of comedy, a terrific performance on and off the pitch that day must give us hope going into the play offs!
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Celebration of the Season –Winston Reid, Nottingham Forest away
Not a prolific goal poacher, Reid got the winner against Millwall that will always be remembered by Hammers fans, but his celebration after he netted in the Hammers emphatic victory over Nottingham Forest early in the season was my favourite.Forget Kevin Nolan’s ‘weird bird thing’ (official title) and Ricardo Vaz Te’s ‘weird arm thing’ (again…) Reid’s attacking of the hoardings in front of the travelling away fans was great to watch. The aggression in it made me laugh and a surprising intent in hurting everything in his path after scoring goal was wonderful and passionate.
Disagree with any of them? Let me know below or on Twitter: @Brad_Pinard