Tottenham midfielder Scott Parker left upset by West Ham boo-boys
England international was booed on return
Tuesday 26 February 2013
Scott Parker said it was "upsetting" to be jeered by some West Ham United fans on Monday night, as he returned to Upton Park for the first time since leaving for Tottenham Hotspur in August 2011.
Parker enjoyed a very successful spell at West Ham, winning Hammer of the Year three consecutive times in 2009, 2010 and 2011. In his final season, he was voted the footballer writers' player of the year even as West Ham finished bottom of the Premier League.
But this counted for little on Monday night, as Parker was booed, and the England midfielder said he might have been entitled to expect a slightly better reception.
"I was a little disappointed. In football one thing I have learned is that not much surprises you but I didn't expect West Ham fans to boo me and it was upsetting. They see it that I went to a local rival. I just thought I might get a better reception for what I did here and for the time I spent here, really."
Parker, enjoying an extended run in the Spurs team recently, is excited about the prospect of opening up a seven-point gap over Arsenal if they beat their local rivals in Sunday afternoon's derby.
"Tottenham as a club has been living in the shadows of Arsenal a bit," Parker admitted. "Arsenal is still a top, top side but certainly we have narrowed the gap. We have players in our squad that Arsenal would want any day of the week. It's a big game for us as we can push away a little bit."
The win over West Ham was the third recent game that Gareth Bale had settled with a spectacular late winner and Parker admitted that they were indebted to the Welsh international for leading them to a crucial victory.
"Words can't describe how well he is playing, at the time I thought we were a bit sloppy and yet again he stepped up and got us three points," Parker said.
Gylfi Sigurdsson added that Bale had shown he is on a par with the very best players in the world.
"Probably Cristiano [Ronaldo], [Lionel] Messi and Gareth are up there," he said. "They are outstanding players and Gareth showed it again at the end that he can do something special and we are all happy for him. We are all happy that he is here at the moment. He has to be up there [on that level]. He has been doing it for many years and you can see he is a special player."
Latest in Sport
Chelsea victory parade: Chelsea mocked on Twitter as 'tens of fans' pack the streets of London
Liverpool's 2005 Champions League-winning side: From Jerzy Dudek to Vladimir Smicer - where are they now?
Jack Wilshere's final-day strike wins Match of the Day's Goal of the Season award after Arsenal fans hijack vote
Jurgen Klopp favourite to replace Brendan Rodgers at Liverpool if he's sacked
Young Preston fan has play-off hero Jermaine Beckford's shirt stolen from him at Wembley - which then appears for sale on Gumtree
- 1 Cyclist who knocked down three-year-old girl says his life has been 'destroyed'
- 2 A politically correct lefty goes to see Top Gear live – you'll probably believe what happened next
- 4 Isis burns woman alive for refusing to engage in 'extreme' sex act, UN says
As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
Scotland may have to leave the EU even if it votes to stay in, David Cameron confirms
The day that Britain resigned as a global power
SNP fury as HS2 finds 'no business case' for taking fast train service to Scotland
EU referendum: David Cameron to deny EU migrants and under-18s the chance to vote
A nation of inequality: How the UK is failing to feed its most vulnerable people