German Press Were Not Impressed With Moyes

13 Apr, 2024
written by Nigel Kahn

German Press Were Not Impressed With Moyes

 

Being somewhat of a follower of German football, I noticed this article about our game with Leverkusen on one of their football sites – Kicker.de – and thought I would share.

FROM KICKER.DE  (English translation) – Xabi Alonso’s dry counter to Moyes’ questionable criticism

In the quarter-final first leg of the Europa League, Bayer 04 had to wait a long time for the redeeming goals against West Ham United. The English proved to be a tough nut to crack with their defensive style of play – and their coach David Moyes is a sore loser.

It was a game of patience. Once again. Even West Ham United, seventh in the Premier League, saw only this way to survive against the Leverkusen passing machine. And so in the 2-0 win, which came about thanks to late goals from jokers Jonas Hofmann (83′) and Victor Boniface (90’+1), Bayer 04 found themselves, as so often, faced with an extremely deep opposing defensive wall.

“We knew that West Ham wouldn’t press us high. They played with a five-man chain for the first time, normally in the Premier League they play a chain of four. That shows once again the respect that the opponents have for us,” analyzed Granit Xhaka: “But we had enough patience and enough quality.”

So Bayer stuck to themselves for the entire duration of the game, didn’t let themselves be dissuaded from their own game idea and in the end they deserved to win. “It wasn’t easy to create chances,” said a satisfied Xabi Alonso afterwards, who was not surprised by the Hammers’ destructive style of play: “Many teams in the Premier League play like that, so we kind of expected it.”

West Ham’s approach was not attractive, but it was certainly legitimate. But if the discouraged performance of the English, who only had one real chance to score with their only shot on goal, only caused people to shrug their shoulders, the comments from visiting coach David Moyes only caused a shake of the head.

He sharply criticized Leverkusen’s reactions to a rude foul by Lucas Paqueta in front of the Bayer bench in the 21st minute. The Brazilian was shown a yellow card after an attack on Amine Adli and is therefore suspended for the second leg.

Paqueta could have seen red, should have seen yellow-red.

“The bench’s behavior was disgraceful,” Moyes complained without being asked at the press conference. “I found that disappointing. The bench should have let the referee make the decision.” An extremely questionable criticism was Paqueta’s foul, which should have been shown a yellow-red card three minutes later after a “punch” on Florian Wirtz, which was actually on the verge of a red card. So Moyes’ attack appeared to be a cheap distraction from his own fearful appearance.

Xabi Alonso’s response to the allegations was correspondingly dry. “What? Shameful?” the Basque asked in surprise, “the yellow card was completely deserved. David often spoke to the fourth official. We all do that, including me. You can’t call it shameful. I have respect for David but the referee made the right decision.” To put a clear point with the last sentence: “We did our job and didn’t concentrate on their bench.”

The link to the article can be found HERE.

 

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