Farewell Boleyn: The 80s

You have already crowned Bobby Moore your West Ham United player of the 60s, Sir Trevor Brooking player of the 70s and now the 80s are to take centre stage.

Debate has raged over the last fortnight, with your memories and votes helping to shape the Club's plans to give the Boleyn Ground the best possible send-off, ahead of the move to Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in 2016.

So to the 80s, a decade that began with an historic FA Cup triumph over the much-fancied Arsenal at Wembley and then the Boys of 86 fired the Hammers to the Club's highest ever top-flight finish.


Even if it was Alan Devonshire's wing-play and a rare Sir Trevor header that provided the 80s' crowning glory, it will forever be remembered as an era of stalwarts at the back and fireworks up front.


Phil Parkes, Alvin Martin and Ray Stewart racked up well over a thousand appearances between them over the ten years, while David Cross, Tony Cottee and Frank McAvennie were rampant at the other end.

Who will ever forget skipper Martin's hat-trick against three different goalkeepers in an 8-1 demolition of Newcastle United, as the Hammers sought to end Merseyside's title monopoly?

To refresh those precious memories, West Ham TV caught up with Parkes, Devonshire, McAvennie and Mark Ward, with the latter insisting the Boys of 86 were the best in the land at the time.

"When you look back, people speak to you and they call that team legends. We won nothing but to finish third and come so close to winning the championship, behind a great side as well in Liverpool - I still believe we were the best footballing team in that division. We just had a bad start and ran out of games."

Do you agree? Would the Hammers have clinched the title, but for the backlog of games in April? Now we want to hear from you. First up, who gets your vote for player of the decade?

Will it be Devonshire - who many of his contemporaries acclaim as the cream of an outstanding crop - or will you opt for another of the legends who led West Ham to the brink of title glory?

Whoever it is and whatever your reasons, we want to hear them. You can vote here via our poll on whufc.com, or alternatively tweet us your winner with #Boleyn80s. Our eleven-man shortlist is here:

Tony Cottee, David Cross, Alan Devonshire, Alan Dickens, Tony Gale, Frank McAvennie, Alvin Martin, Phil Parkes, Geoff Pike, Ray Stewart, Mark Ward

Then, once more, it is open forum. Tell us your favourite goal, favourite match, and favourite memory from the 80s, and send them either on Facebook, Twitter or via email at [email protected]

They need not be the most celebrated 80s moments, just those that you remember best, including the games and players that meant most to you during that era at the Boleyn Ground.

To make sure you are here for when we honour our 80s legends and all of our final season celebrations at the Boleyn Ground, join the 2015/16 Season Ticket waiting list now. Your Season Ticket for the final season will also secure your place in migration to our new home in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.