Happy new Sears for West Ham’s Freddie
After 72 games and much heartache and angst, West Ham’s Freddie Sears finally scored his second goal in league football against Wolves at Upton Park on Saturday.
FREDDIE SEARS ambled into the box and waited for his chance. He has been waiting a long time – 72 games to be exact – but when the moment came he was ready.
Tal Ben Haim delivered the low cross and the 21-year-old West Ham fan from Romford was there to sweep the ball into the net and confirm the Hammers’ three points against Wolves.
“It’s a great feeling just to be back here and playing in the West Ham colours,” said the former Academy boy. “But it’s a better feeling to get the win today and to get the goal. There’s a buzz about the place and a great atmosphere in the dressing room.”
It could all have been so different for Sears. The young striker was sent out to Scunthorpe to try and find his goalscoring touch and though he failed to do that, there was one man who was keeping a very close eye on his progress.
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“Sometimes when you’re out on loan you don’t know if you have plans at the club or not,” admitted Sears. “But I’ve been quite lucky because the gaffer spoke to me quite regularly and said he wanted me to come back.”
It seems that West Ham manager Avram Grant was the real architect of the renaissance of Sears the player. Not only was it his decision to bring the player back from the Championship, he also decided that he would play him on the right wing.
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“It doesn’t matter, but in this case it was my idea to play him on the right,” revealed Grant. “He didn’t play there before on the right side, he played more on the left, but I remember that I played him one half in the training camp in that position and he did a good job, so I felt that he could do it.”
Attention to detail seems to have paid off for the West Ham boss. Sears could easily have been forgotten at Scunthorpe, but Grant took the time to check out how he was doing.
“He was with us in the training camp and he did well in the games where he was with us,” said Grant.
“We felt that he needed some experience, so he played with Scunthorpe, but we followed him and even though he didn’t score there, I think he did a good job, two or three times I think he was the man of the match.”
Sears return has been a dream come true for the former England under-21 international, not least because he is helping out the club he loves.
“It was a massive win against Wolves,” he said. “As a West Ham fan I don’t want to see us get relegated. I don’t want to see us at the bottom, so it’s a massive boost for me and for the fans to get the win we needed.
“We all knew it was a must-win game, there was no hiding that, and we came and won the game.”
There was no hiding Sears’ scoring record before this game either, but Grant felt he handled the pressure superbly.
“You know when you play as a forward and you don’t score it is difficult, but he is doing the right things all the time,” said Grant.
“He has done that for the last three games, he is playing intelligently, he is doing things for the other players in the team and he is still young so he can be better.
“He scored a fantastic goal today. His shot in the first half, he did it right and I don’t know how the player cleared from the line, it was an unbelievable save. He is good and he just needs to continue.”
Now he has got his chance, Sears intends to do just that.
“Hopefully we can keep winning games,” said Sears. “We’ve had three hard games and we’ve done well. We’ve all dug in together and got good points, which we needed to do.
“Hopefully we can push on and see where it takes us.”
He may be grateful to the other Irons, but one place Freddie Sears hopes the near future won’t take him, is back to Scunthorpe.
He’s back at the club where he grew up and he intends to stay there.