West Ham boss: New Zealand and Ivory Coast put pressures on my stars to play

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce believes that political pressures from the football associations of New Zealand and Ivory Coast led to Winston Reid and Guy Demel being called up.

The All Whites beat Tahiti 2-0 in Papeete and 3-0 in Christchurch without the services of the 24-year-old.

And the defender only arrived back from New Zealand today and is a doubt for Saturday’s home game with Southampton.

“Winston Reid doesn’t get back until today,” Allardyce said. “He was called out even though he was injured. He flew 26,000 miles and didn’t play.

“I don’t see any sense in Winston Reid going all the way to New Zealand and get there to support the players that are already there.


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“They didn’t trust him or us that he wasn’t injured. I think that the players are brought there and put under enormous pressure to play by the coaches in certain political developments.

“I’m glad that he and Guy Demel have resisted those pressures. He has a slight back problem.”

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Demel, on the other hand, had to witness the riot in Dakar that led to the Ivory Coast’s African Cup of Nations qualifier with Senegal being abandoned.

However, his thigh injury has not healed leaving him a doubt for the game against the Saints.

“Guy Demel has a thigh problem and he probably won’t be fit for Saturday,” Allardyce added.

“Maybe because he’s been called up by Ivory Coast and they’ve not treated him in the way we would have treated him but that’s unfortunate because we’re not in control of that.

The Hammers boss reported that no players have suffered a new injury while with their national sides.

“Apart from the shock of Senegal vs Ivory Coast where we had two very important players in that horrific situation,” Allardyce revealed.

“One didn’t play [Guy Demel] because he was injured and the other one [Mohamed Diame] did. They’ve come back okay.

“We’ve had one or two players but we’ve had no players that have been injured on international duty.”

However, Allardyce was hopeful that Andy Carroll’s time with England will lead to a fitter player returning to his club, although he would have liked to have seen his player representing his country.

“Andy is okay this morning. He’d have liked to have played a bit more than he did,” the West Ham boss revealed.

“He got 17 minutes against San Marino. They had a very competitive two weeks.

“Hopefully the training will improve his fitness for us.

“I’m not here to criticise Roy on his decision making process. I’d have liked him to play because he’s my player.”

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