Irvine steps in after COVID concerns

West Ham United 5-1 Hull City – Reaction

West Ham United dispatched Hull City with the minimum fuss. However, this one-sided Carabao Cup contest will be remembered more so for the positive COVID tests received by Hammers boss, David Moyes as well as Issa Diop and Josh Cullen – both initially scheduled to play.

With the Scotsman isolated, then sent home, it was his number two, Alan Irvine, who took charge, oversaw the victory and subsequently faced the media, explaining the moment the concerning news broke. 

“Twenty past six – we suddenly got some info from our doctor and head physio to say there were three positive tests – the manager and the two players Issa and Josh,” Irvine explained.

“Immediately, at that point, you’re thinking ‘we’ve got a game in an hour and ten minutes’ so we had to focus on that, and that was exactly what we focused on.

“We had to pick a different team. We had to make sure the players who were going to be in the team needed to do their jobs well in terms of open play and set plays. I just went and had a chat with the players, explained the situation and that was the last we talked about it, we just got on with the game.

Irvine continued: “It was vitally important that the players were prepared psychologically and they were prepared to go out and perform because this was an opportunity for them to impress and they certainly did that.

“I was delighted with that. There were no players discussing it or looking for any kind of excuses about what was going on. No players were thinking the game couldn’t go on, it was really positive.”

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Brian Jeeves

Email: [email protected]