Joe: Blame Us All

Joe Cole says that all of the players accept their responsibility for the 6-0 defeat at Old Trafford - and asks critics not to blame individuals.

Joe, whose performance was praised by Glenn Roeder after the game, admits of the thrashing: "It wasn't nice at all; we just came up against them and they were just different class.

"Again, it was bad defending by the whole team; we are not going to sit back and blame the goalkeeper, or the back four, or the midfield four- we are all in it together, and it was bad defending from everybody."

Even when the game was beyond redemption for the Hammers, Joe continued to give his all, nearly grabbing a consolation towards the end.

Was he tempted to save himself a little for Wednesday night's crucial league clash with Blackburn?

"Of course not, it is a game of football, and whenever I play for West Ham I am never going to give up - whatever the score," he insists.

"All those fans, 9,000 or so, travelled up - and I feel in myself that I would be cheating them if gave up.

"Even if we are 6-0 down with no chance of getting back in the game, if you can just give them a little bit of something to take home then you have got to do it.

"They have still got to stay with us; we do appreciate their support, we have just got to stay positive and get up for the next game."

The youngest captain in the Premiership hopes his colleagues can produce the right response to come back from the mauling.

"These results can go either way," he admits. "It is a huge wake up call and it is on us now to make sure that we don't cave in."

Speaking in the immediate aftermath of the defeat, he admits: "I think we will be all right but I just feel numb at the moment; I just want to get home, get in my bed, have a think about it, then crack on and go to work tomorrow.

"We try again - there is nowhere to hide on the football field."

A fact, underlined by Glenn Roeder, who adds: "I can only apologise for such an inept performance - but we fight on, and I am not one to give in.

"It was a desperate day for our supporters; we let them down and people got the blast they deserved.

"But I do believe in staying supportive with the people you work with."