Farewell Boleyn: The 90s

As West Ham United's procession through Hammers history continues, the Club now turn to the 1990s, a colourful decade of two promotions, one relegation and even a European campaign.

Supporters' memories will help to shape the Club's final season celebrations, as West Ham make plans for a brilliant Boleyn send-off prior to the move to our magnificent new home in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in 2016/17.

So to the 90s and away from the drama on the pitch, the Hammers were to bid a painful goodbye to the great Bobby Moore at home to Wolverhampton Wanderers on 6 March '93, after the England and West Ham hero had tragically lost his battle with bowel cancer the previous month.

Promotion to the top flight in '91 was followed by a swift return to the second tier and the yo-yoing continued with a second promotion in three years in '93. Now a Premiership side for the first time, West Ham would remain just that for the following ten seasons.


Amid the ups and downs, Billy Bonds' men enjoyed an epic cup run in '91, one that peaked with Stuart Slater's finest hour in a 2-1 sixth-round win over Everton under the lights in east London.

Elsewhere, the Hammers were famously twice the scourge of Sir Alex Ferguson's Manchester United at the Boleyn Ground.

Bonds' already-relegated side upset the applecart in April '92, when Kenny Brown's volley downed the Reds and handed Leeds United an ultimately decisive advantage in the title race.

And then three years later the ever-popular Ludek Miklosko - the first-ever overseas Hammer of the Year in 1991 - took it upon himself to ensure Blackburn Rovers would lift the silverware, performing heroics to hold Sir Alex's side to an infuriating 1-1 draw.

There was no shortage of excitement in the latter years of the 90s either, as Harry Redknapp assembled a new-look West Ham with a string of eye-catching deals. Among his most famous business was the acquisition of potent double act John Hartson and Paul Kitson, whose 13 goals fired the Hammers to safety in the second half of the 1996/97 campaign.

A revitalised West Ham would finish eighth the following term, which, as it turned out, was merely the precursor to bagging fifth spot in 1998/99, still the Hammers' highest Premier League finish.

The Intertoto Cup, a fabulous night in Metz and a fleeting stay in the then UEFA Cup was the least Redknapp's Hammers deserved, as the Claret and Blue Army enjoyed a European adventure for the first time in 19 long years.

So where does that lot rate for you? First up, we want you to pick your outstanding player of the decade. Will it be stopper supreme Miklosko, Julian Dicks, an emerging Rio Ferdinand or the long-serving legend Steve Potts?

Or perhaps you are looking further up field and reckon Trevor Morley, John Hartson or Paul Kitson are worth a shout. Whoever it is and whatever your reasons, we want to hear them. You can vote via our poll on whufc.com or alternatively tweet us your winner with #Boleyn90s.

And do not fear Paolo Di Canio, Trevor Sinclair and company are to feature in the noughties. The eleven-man shortlist, then, is:

Eyal Berkovic, Slaven Bilic, Ian Bishop, Julian Dicks, Rio Ferdinand, John Hartson, Paul Kitson, Ludek Miklosko, John Moncur, Trevor Morley and Steve Potts.

Then, once again, it is time for our open forum. Tell us your favourite goal, match and memory from the 90s, and send them to us, either on Twitter or via email to [email protected].

They don't need to be the moments that every fan will remember, just the games, players and goals that mean the most to you.

To make sure you're here for the 90s theme day and all the other final season celebrations at the Boleyn Ground, get your name on the 2015/16 Season Ticket waiting list now. That will also ensure you get the best choice of seats at our new home in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.