David Moyes urges his West Ham players to ‘keep fighting’ for European football in spite of terrible run of controversial red card decisions in the Premier League
- David Moyes has told his players to ‘keep fighting’ for a European football spot
- The West Ham boss said it is the best answer to the poor treatment they’ve had
- The Hammers have had five of their last eight red cards in the league overturned
- Vice-chairman Karren Brady said VAR is the main reason for the poor decisions
David Moyes believes sustaining West Ham’s heroic European push is the best antidote to the Premier League’s perceived poor treatment of the club.
Moyes was raging following last weekend’s controversial dismissal of defender Fabian Balbuena against Chelsea.
And just as when team-mate Thomas Soucek was wrongfully dismissed earlier in the season, the red card was rescinded allowing Balbuena to feature in Sunday’s trip to Burnley.
David Moyes has called on his West Ham team to ‘keep fighting’ for a European football place
Moyes was furious with Fabian Balbuena’s sending off against Chelsea, which was overturned
Indeed, five of West Ham’s last eight red cards in the Premier League have been overturned and vice-chairman Karren Brady reckons the standard of refereeing in the top division has never been lower.
‘We can only keep fighting, keep pushing on and try to challenge [at the top of the league],’ Moyes insisted.
‘They can’t surely be right, the numbers that we’ve had are so poor.
‘Maybe all the teams in the Premier League have had similar stats and if they have then I take it back and apologise but it sounds like a very big stat, for any club.’
Brady, meanwhile, is in no doubt where the blame lies – squarely at the door of Stockley Park and VAR.
‘Refs spurred by VAR seem more willing to show yellow cards, many for tackles that once were taken for granted,’ she wrote in her column in The Sun.
West Ham’s Thomas Soucek (centre) was also wrongfully sent off earlier in the season
‘So far this season in the Premier League no fewer than 955 have been flourished, many justified but some laughable.
‘The refereeing itself has been poor this season, possibly the worst I have seen in the Premier League.’
Moyes has also been left disappointed by the way the fixtures have fallen this season, with West Ham often playing after their top-four rivals.
The Hammers, who went into the weekend in fifth position and within striking distance of the Champions League places, have been made to play last out of the other European contenders on numerous occasions this season, making it difficult to put down a marker.
‘I’m a pretty neutral football person,’ Moyes explained.
‘I don’t look at things too badly but I look at it and I’ve certainly seen it when I came into the club, I saw things that I don’t think are right. Or a lot of the early part of the season we had early games and we got results in, but it looks like we’re slipping back into a “Monday night, 8:15 at Burnley”.
Hammers vice-chairman Karren Brady said refereeing this season was the worst she had seen
‘The fixtures have been difficult for everyone this year, not just West Ham.
‘There are so many clubs who have been disappointed with the timings. As we all know it is to do with the situation with TV. You would hope that they had been fair with everybody.
‘There has just been a general feeling. Maybe I’m wrong, I would accept that.
‘The stats regarding the sending offs makes me think, “hang on a minute here, there’s something not quite right”.
‘I’ll stand corrected if you turn around and say all the other clubs in the Premier League have had the same stat.’