The opening Matchweek away and facing Newcastle are two scenarios that have opposed West Ham recently. Repeating history this time around is not an option.
West Ham fans and players alike will want to erase the memory of anything related to Newcastle United from last season. The Magpies took all six points from the Hammers last season in two atrocious matches, for lack of a better word. If David Moyes’ boys are going to start the new campaign off right, they are going to have to avoid looking back at all costs.
Matchweek one last season was one of hope and promise just like any other, but it was also a sheer delight to have football back. That joy was quickly stifled after a slow first half, followed by West Ham’s killer, Callum Wilson, scoring in the 56th minute, and then Jeff Hendrick getting his name on the sheet to close out week one.
More recently, on April 17th of last year, the Hammers played their hearts out, only to be beaten again by not only the Toons but by the officiating as well. A horrific 36th minute saw Issa Diop score an own goal, and Craig Dawson sent off on a horrific call. West Ham fought back and even tied it up down a man, only to have their hearts ripped out after an 87th minute goal.
West Ham: Repeating history, not in the cards vs. Newcastle
Although Matchweek one isn’t the end-all to be all, it is an important trendsetter for weeks to come. Weeks that are even more important to West Ham with the early season addition of the Europa League. Instead of knocking the kinks off, the Gaffer has his boys playing on a high. This form and confidence needs to stay up and kick off a season with an important three points.
Refereeing aside, mistakes were made in both matches. It seemed that sometimes last year, the only thing that could beat West Ham was themselves. Own goals and ball watching have been a past mantra but will need to be forgotten before Sunday afternoon.
Football is a sport where forgetting the bad times is harder than remembering the good at times. In order for West Ham to start their 2021/22 campaign in the win column, they will need to forget about their sloppy performances against Newcastle and remember who they are.