Easter holiday fun for Hammers duo

West Ham United duo Guy Demel and Diego Poyet dropped in on an Easter holiday Soccer School at West Ham United Foundation’s Beckton facility this week.

The pair were on hand to watch the young footballers in action, before drawing breath for a typically amusing question and answer session.

There was still plenty of time for photographs and autographs to round off the afternoon and there was a resounding thumbs-up from the Hammers players involved. 

“It’s a really great occasion every time we get the chance to spend time with the fans,” Demel explained. “It’s always nice to see the kids with a big smile on their faces.”

Sentiments echoed by Poyet, who, as it turns out, was no stranger to a holiday football course as an aspiring footballer growing up.   

“The kids looked like they were having a lot of fun, there are a lot of West Ham shirts as well which just shows the good work that is going on here at the community.

“I always used to go to these sort of events with my older brother so I was looking forward to coming here. It’s good to see the fans enjoying themselves."
Following the coaching session, the players were put to the test in a Q&A session, facing all manner of weird and wonderful enquiries from the children. 

Emerging from the cross examination unscathed, Demel enthused: “There were some really good questions! They are young kids and they have a lot to say. I had a great time and it’s nice to answer their questions.”

With a range of topics covered, it wasn’t long before the revelation of Poyet’s parenthood was unearthed: “I don’t think they knew who my dad (Gus Poyet) was, there were a few shocked faces when they found out,” Poyet continued. “I threw it out there and it was a bit of a laugh. There were some good questions, they’re some bright lads.

“Some were simple questions and others were harder. It’s good to be able to give them feedback about life as a professional footballer and hopefully help them become professionals one day.”

Looking ahead to the Hammers’ weekend trip to the Etihad Stadium, both players insisted that despite a downturn in Manchester City’s recent results, Sunday represented a stern challenge.

As the Ivorian international reasoned: “I don’t think you can ever say it’s good time to play Man City, maybe after the game. It’s always hard to play them. We need to be at our best, that’s all we can do.”

While neither player has started as many games as they would have liked, they both insisted that it was part and parcel of the modern game.

“I’m not a good watcher”, Demel admitted. “I like to be involved. But it’s a part of the job, you learn a lot about yourself. It gives you a chance to improve as a man and as a footballer. I’ll be better for it. 

“I’m not a good watcher but of course I support my team and my teammates. I always want us to win and I’m sure we’ll get back to our good form soon.

“Carl has had a superb season, West Ham fans can be happy because he was a great signing. Aaron as well on the other side has been fantastic and I can’t wait to see Diego play regularly.”