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Dave Evans, West Ham Correspondent
Wednesday, March 26, 2014
Outstanding Adrian has not had his confidence knocked
West Ham boss Sam Allardyce insists that goalkeeper Adrian has not had his confidence jolted after he let in the Wayne Rooney wondergoal against Manchester United on Saturday evening.
The Spanish stopper, who will take his place in goal for the home clash with Hull City tonight, rushed backwards when Rooney let fly with a 50-yard volley, but he could do nothing to prevent the ball bouncing into the back of the net.
“I don’t think he will be affected,” said the manager this week.
“He hasn’t got any fault for me regarding the goal at all.
“He is in the right position, but it is one in a million. On another day, you could say if it bounced a yard further back it probably goes over the bar.”
Some suggested that Adrian was too far out of goal, but Allardyce insisted that nobody could have foretold what happened.
“He got himself a little confused running backwards, you can see that, but it is because of the element of surprise,” said the manager.
“I said, ‘don’t blame yourself for that son, get on with it, don’t let it affect you’.
“I think when you let a soft one in that goes through your hands and is more like a back pass, that is more of a concern than Rooney’s strike.”
The former Real Betis goalkeeper has been a revelation since replacing Jussi Jaaskelanin the West Ham goal and the manager is suitably impressed.
“He’s been outstanding,” he said. “The value of a goalkeeper in money terms is far less than the value of a goalkeeper in performance terms. It is the exact opposite to a centre forward.
“You pay tens of millions of pounds for a centre forward to score you the goals, but we paid nothing for Adrian who actually stops goals going in. “
Adrian has managed six clean sheets so far in his time at Upton Park, though that did include a run of four on the trot, started by the tremendous 0-0 draw at title-chasing Chelsea.
“He is the second most important man in the team,” explained Allardyce.
“After your front man who scores goals, he wins you the game when you are 1-0 up, because he makes the save do it.
“It is a vitally important position. Good goalkeepers earn you anything from nine to 12 points over the course of a season.”
Hopefully Adrian will be securing more points for the Hammers before the end of the campaign, if he does that should mean Premier League survival.