LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 07: West Ham United manager Sam Allardyce reacts during the nPower Championship Playoff Semi Final 2nd Leg between West Ham United and Cardiff City at the Boleyn Ground on May 7, 2012 in London, England. (Photo by Ian Walton/Getty Images)
Happy pseudo-Spursday! A couple of really good football matches will take place today and we'll have open threads for both of them. The first game is probably less significant to Tottenham Hotspur fans, but it is the richest game in all of football, so it at least bears watching.
The match features two teams that got relegated last season. West Ham, lead by Sam Allardyce, finished 3rd during the season only two points away from automatic promotion. In the first round of the playoffs the Hammers demolished Cardiff, because...well, because that's what happens to Cardiff in the playoffs. Blackpool finished fifth during the season and managed to slide past Birmingham City in the playoffs to reach this game.
As I said, both teams were relegated last season, so there's no real great story to root for. I suppose I'm rooting for West Ham, despite that awful Green Street Hooligans movie, because it was really weird to not play them this season. Blackpool do wear orange (my favorite color) though and I do like Ian Holloway, but I don't have any real interest in seeing them back in the top flight.
West Ham (4-4-1-1): Green; Demel, Tomkins, Reid, Taylor; Collison, O'Neil, Noble, Vaz Te; Nolan; Cole
Blackpool (4-2-3-1): Gilks; Eardly, Baptiste, Evatt, Crainey; Ferguson, Angel; M Phillips, Dobbie, Ince; K Phillips
Kickoff: 10 AM EDT (3:00 PM local time) from Wembley Stadium
TV: Fox Soccer