theyflysohigh : Steve Marsh

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It was all over bar the closing ceremony, and a musical farewell from the Cockney Rejects, blasting out I’m Forever Blowing Bubbles

Reading the next day’s media coverage of the occasion, the headlines focussed on the pre-match crowd trouble: United hit by West Ham ambush (The Times), Upton Park shamed by ugly farewell (The Daily Telegraph).


The post-match recriminations had Manchester United’s manager, Louis van Gaal, claiming that the attack on Manchester United’s team bus played a part in their 3-2 defeat, and West Ham suggesting that the Manchester United team bus could have arrived earlier at the ground.  


The game was always going to be a sell out as the Evening Standard reported black market tickets trading at £2,000. Add the ticketless fans milling around outside the stadium to the 34,602 inside, probably gave a total of closer to 45,000 West Ham fans celebrating the finale.

White Horse

10 mins:

West Ham United  1 – 0 Manchester United

Manuel Lanzini got in down the away side’s right and cut the ball back for Sakho to hit left-footed first time. His shot clipped Daley Blind which took the ball just beyond the reach of David De Gea’s right glove and snugly into the corner of the goal.

(The Daily Telegraph)












51 mins:

West Ham United  1 – 1 Manchester United

De Gea launched a long move and Marcus Rashford carried it on before Juan Mata took over. Mata spirited the ball inside to Martial, who equalised from close range.

(The Times)





72 mins:

West Ham United  1 – 2 Manchester United

Ander Herrera won the ball off Mark Noble, Wayne Rooney took play on, releasing Rashford.  The 19-year-old picked out Martial, who swept the ball into the net as Darren Randolph had stepped out, anticipating a cross.

(The Times)





76 mins:

West Ham United  2 – 2 Manchester United

Within four minutes, Antonio had equalised with a powerful header, this time when Payet recycled a free-kick of his that struck the wall and crossed to the back post.

(The Daily Telegraph)















81 mins:

West Ham United  3 – 2 Manchester United

It was another Payet free-kick that Reid headed in from close range

to win the match.


Boleyn Ground's Farewell Match ...

by Roger Hillier

The 2,398th and final game at the Boleyn Ground on Tuesday May 10, 2016 against Manchester United slipped into history and found its place in West Ham United’s folklore.  

Gone but not forgotten

Long Live The Boleyn

Farewell Programme

Reflecting on the last match, it was not so much another fixture as a momentous occasion in the ground's 112 year history with so many typical West Ham ingredients. Some to be proud of and some not to be.


The 90 minutes were memorable and a fitting tribute as the curtain fell on the Upton Park stage. But the pre-match events off the field went a long way to overshadow the actual game.


In hindsight it was almost inevitable that a game against northern rivals, Manchester United, could not pass without significant incidents. The crowd boosted by up to 10,000 ticketless fans created a cocktail of chaos. The party started early afternoon as fans gathered to be part of the historic farewell celebrations.


As afternoon gave way to evening the sheer number of supporters who had gathered in the streets around the ground was overwhelming, none-more-so than in Green Street. For reasons unknown, the opening of the Upton Park turnstiles were delayed and with the massed crowds growing by the minute it was inevitable they would spill into the surrounding roads.


The Green Street / Barking Road junction, by now closed off, was a sea of claret and blue as the police struggled to keep the fans and traffic moving.


The Manchester United coach was brought to a standstill when it reached the gridlocked junction, and was greeted by a hail of bottles and cans. Smashed windows and players sheltering under seats were not ideal match preparations for the Red Devils, and their late arrival resulted in the kick-off being delayed by 45 minutes.  

Tony Gale Ade Coker

When the 2015-16 Premier League fixture list was announced, the last visitors to the Boleyn Ground were scheduled to be Swansea City.

Memories of 1923, as a mounted police officer on a white horse tries to clear a path for the Manchester United coach through the massed crowds

Upton Park Swansong

Fairy Tale Ending

For the vast majority of the passionate claret and blue fans it was a fantastic evening. The capacity 34,602 crowd savoured a keenly fought 90 minutes as both sides needed a win.


Manchester United were aiming for a top four Premier League placing and automatic qualification to the financial life blood of the Champions League. For West Ham United the sights were slightly lower at attaining fifth place and automatic qualification to the Europa League.


Typical of the Hammers this Premier League match lived up to a roller coaster of highs and lows. The highs started with West Ham taking an early lead, the lows took in falling behind, and a final high with an 81st minute winner. The see-saw game ended in a 3-2 triumph for the Hammers.


To wrap the evening up, the final whistle triggered a closing ceremony to bring the curtains down on the Boleyn Ground. After a 112 year tenure in Green Street, West Ham United were now moving to Stratford’s Olympic Stadium.

With over 300 former players invited to attend this last game the evening started as a West Ham United Who’s Who.

Autograph hunters were in heaven spotting ex-players making their way through the crowd to the entrance of the West Stand.

Has there ever been a better occasion to obtain so many claret and blue autographs spanning so many decades in the space of 120 minutes?

Tuesday May 10, 2016 - How the Day Unfolded

Crossed Hammer outline


Crossed Hammer outline

The Boleyn Public House

A farewell

Large number of fans start to congregate by The Boleyn pub on the corner of Green Street.

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The junction of Green Street and Barking Road became gridlocked hours before kick-off.

With a capacity 34,602 in attendance, police, West Ham United and Newham council failed to anticipate an estimated 10,000 ticketless fans would arrive outside the Boleyn Ground to join in the farewell celebrations.

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Manchester United team coach sets out from their Canary Wharf hotel on the 3.7 mile journey to the Boleyn Ground.

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Manchester United team coach gets to within 200 metres of the Boleyn Ground. And slowly drives a further 100 metres to reach The Boleyn pub before the coach is unable to move. The coach remains stationary for around 40 minutes and is pelted with bottles, cans and drinks. The bus is dented and some windows smashed as many Manchester United players take cover on the floor of their coach. Jesse Lingard posts film of the players ducking for cover.

Crossed Hammer outline Coach 01 pub sign Pub 02

Photograph: Tom Jenkins for the Guardian

Photograph: Newham Recorder

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Approx 6:30pm

First turnstiles opened

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6:30 pm

Manchester United request the kick-off to be delayed

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7:00 pm

Announcement that the kick-off will be delayed for 45 minutes to 8:30pm

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6:00 pm

Sponge man hosts ex-Hammers party

Former West Ham United physio Rob Jenkins hosts a farewell party at his Green Street practice opposite the Boleyn Ground.

Steve Marsh with Ade Coker

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7:10 pm

Manchester United coach finally crawls into the stadium’s car park


Farewell Match Kicks-off

West Ham United

Randolph, Antonio, Reid, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Kouyate, Sakho (Tomkins 84), Noble, Lanzini (Obiang 83),

Payet (Valencia 90+1), Carroll.

Manchester United

De Dea, Valencia (Januzaji 87), Smalling, Blind, Rojo, Mata, Schneiderlin (Carrick 46), Herrera (Lingard 83), Rooney, Martial, Rashford.

As West Ham United and Manchester United had both made good progress in the FA Cup competition it meant the January 2016 home fixture to Manchester United had to be postponed and moved to the very end of the season.

Club Badge Man crest Crossed Hammer outline Football 2 Football 2 Football 2 Football 2 Football 2 Man 01 Ayris Finn Forrest

Johnny Ayris

and goalkeepers Neil Finn and Craig Forrest

West Ham & Manchester United take to the field

Man 02

Valencia & Lanzini challenge for possession

Half-time 1 - 0

Man 03 Man 04

Payet chased by Valencia

Sakho heads clear from Smalling

Man 05 Man 06

Aerial view of the last ever goal at the Boleyn

Upton Park erupts as Reid celebrates his winner

Tony Gale signs for the fans

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10:15 pm

Referee Mike Dean blows the final whistle on the Boleyn Ground's last fixture

Man 07 Man 08

Captain Mark Noble celebrates at full time

West Ham players salute the supporters

Man 10 Crossed Hammer outline

10:30 pm

Boleyn Ground’s closing ceremony

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12:00 pm

The Manchester United players are held back until fans disperse and a replacement coach arrives.

Crossed Hammer outline Articles Full Members Cup Vintage Sheringham

Support material courtesy of Richard Miller

Match Action images Guardian Newspaper

Post Match Reporting

Match Rating west ham Match Rating man utd Pre-match betting

Pre-match betting coupon for a 3-2 West Ham win

Headline 01 Headline 03 Headline 02 Headline 04 League table

The Morning After the Night Before

Source: PA