George: Lay Off Lee

George Parris insists that the vilification of Lee Bowyer is unfair - and that he should be judged by what he does on the field.

George, an interested observer at Upton Park on Saturday, says what some of the media has said about him is unjustified.

"I suppose because of what happened prior to him coming, with the court case, he is always going to have that with him," admits the former Hammers defender.

"Hopefully his football will do the talking, but some people will always remember what happened - even though he was found not guilty.

"I think he will be hoping that if his football can do the talking everyone can forget about that, and the more games he plays the better he will become.

"I thought he started brightly on Saturday. Towards the end I thought he tired a bit, but that is understandable because he hasn't played much football recently.

"He could have had a goal and he put himself about - you could easily see why West Ham had bought him.

"When he gets match fit he it will be an even better addition to the squad. He is a quality player and I would have liked to have played with him.

"Earlier in the season he was going for £8m or £9m and I was a bit surprised we got him as it was a bit out of the blue, happening quickly.

"He showed good touches and hopefully it won't take too long to get up to speed."

Of the game overall, he says: "It was a disappointing result and once Newcastle got the second I think we were holding on, to be honest, but it was an entertaining game.

"I see no reason why we can't stay up and when we got the first goal we looked quite impressive, knocking the ball about and we looked like we could score at will.

"But at least we didn't get beaten, so it can't be too bad."