The 2013/14 campaign proved a difficult one for West Ham United supporters to swallow.
The lack of goals – and strikers – for the first half of the season saw Sam Allardyce’s side sucked towards the relegation dogfight and despite an impressive turnaround after Christmas, there were still problems.
Hammers supporters have grown frustrated with the style of football on offer at Upton Park with the majority of fans believing that the tactics simply consist of long balls being launched into a target man.
Sam Allardyce is under big pressure to win the supporters over, not only with results, but with the kind of attractive football West Ham fans have been used to seeing down the years.
Allardyce eased the pressure on himself with a first pre-season win over Sampdoria and changed things up with a 3-5-2 formation.
The win over the Italians will help in terms of confidence as they head into the new season in less than a weeks’ time and if that doesn’t work, surely a reminder they were victorious over Tottenham on three separate occasions last season will do the trick.
Allardyce oversaw a famous 3-0 win at White Hart Lane in October, a 2-1 win on the same ground in the League Cup in December, and a comfortable 2-0 win at Upton Park in April.
That will sadly count for nothing when the season kicks off next weekend, but Allardyce will be desperate to pick a team capable of bringing the bragging rights back to east London.