player and manager was this week described as “underrated” by Sir Alex, who has long been a great friend and ally to the larger than life Hammers boss.
Last meeting: Wayne Rooney's hat-trick inspired United to fight back from two goals down to beat West Ham 4-2 at Upton Park, where a Patrice Evra handball and Nemanja Vidic foul allowed Mark Noble to twice score from the spot for the relegation-battling Hammers. The match is perhaps remembered most for Rooney’s goal celebration, which resulted in a two-match ban for swearing.
Did you know? Tom Cleverley was just six-years-old and Danny Welbeck seven when Rio Ferdinand made his professional debut for West Ham as a 70th minute substitute against Sheffield Wednesday in 1996. On the same day, United sealed a third Premier League title with a 3-0 win at Middlesbrough.
Star man: Andy Carroll has been the subject of intense media scrutiny since joining Liverpool for an estimated £35million in January 2011. Since then, the former Newcastle man has failed to impress at Anfield, prompting a loan move to West Ham this season. Now, under the guidance of Allardyce, the powerful striker appears to be flourishing and netted his first Hammers goal on Sunday.
Quote/unquote: “Big Sam went to Upton Park a year and a bit ago and the cynics said he’s not a West Ham manager as he doesn’t play football. What was his mandate? To get them up into the Premier League as quickly as possible and he got them up within a year. Tell me someone else who could’ve done that?” – Sir