Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Football: Hammers in Right Royal Thrashing; Curbishley Lays into His Sad Side

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Football: Hammers in Right Royal Thrashing; Curbishley Lays into His Sad Side

Article excerpt

Reading 6 West Ham 0

WEST Ham boss Alan Curbishley watched his side humbled by Reading - then accused his players of losing hunger by getting carried away with one successful season in the Premiership, writes MIKE MCGRATH.

Reading overwhelmed Curbish-ley's men at the Madejski Stadium, with Kevin Doyle scoring twice and Brynjar Gunnarsson, Stephen Hunt and Leroy Lita also netting in a 6-0 win.

Anton Ferdinand scored an own goal to highlight West Ham's defensive inadequacies, while Reading showed the characteristics Curbishley wanted to see in his own players.

The Hammers remain in the bottom three despite playing with many of the same players they had last year when they finished in the top half and reached the FA Cup Final.

Curbishley, who took over from Alan Pardew just over a fortnight ago, believes his players have been affected by last season's success as a newly-promoted side.

"What has happened is that this team playing last year was the Reading we saw today - full of hunger, commitment, they want to be in the Premiership and drive the Baby Bentley," said Curbishley.

"Unfortunately we haven't got any of that now."

He said: "I look at Reading and see a lot of the things you need in the side and we didn't have any of that."

Since Curbishley took over from Pardew, he has inspired victory over leaders Manchester United but then followed a draw with Fulham and defeats to Portsmouth and Manchester City before Reading.

The former Charlton boss has seen enough in his squad to explain why they have been struggling this season.

"Over at Charlton I'm used to being in the position of staying in the Premiership and coming back the next year and installing the same hunger in the team," he said.

"They're not Premiership players until they've done five or six years in the Premiership - some of them have only done one and a bit seasons in the Premiership. The Premiership is unforgiving when you don't attack

it right.

"They've shown me in the last couple of weeks why they are down there. …

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