West Brom manager Sam Allardyce was infuriated with West Ham’s Michail Antonio for comments he made about him as the Hammers defeated the Baggies 3:1 at the Hawthorns on Wednesday.
Allardyce said he heard Antonio criticize his style of play after a game that was played with charged emotions as it was revealed minutes before the game that Big Sam would step down from his role as West Brom manager.
Allardyce replaced Slaven Bilic as West Brom’s boss in December and was charged with ensuring that they remain in the Premier League. However, their relegation from the Premier League has been confirmed alongside Sheffield United and Fulham.
Allardyce told Sky Sports : “Michail Antonio’s statement before I came out here saying we just have big men who play down the channel. He insulted me and my team.
“I know he’s a nice lad but it’s disgusting what he said.
“I think he should go back and watch the game and see how we really played. Our front two are 5ft 10 and 5ft 9 so I don’t know what big men he saw running in the channel.”
He also addressed his label as a short-term manager whilst revealing more of what he overheard Antonio saying:
“I haven’t been more than that for the last six to seven years because it’s all you lot talk about. Just like Michail Antonio said, ‘it’s Sam, we’re long ball. It’s Sam, the way we play.’
“It is a load of crap and it always has been a load of crap because I’ve never played the same at any club I’ve been at and if you thought that was long ball today then somebody is deluded.”
He went on to admit that he deployed the long ball tactic against Liverpool as he knew it would rattle them and stated that the Reds were lucky to beat West Brom. All thanks to a last-minute header by Reds’ goalkeeper Alisson Becker to make it 2:1.