Soccer

David Moyes urges angry West Ham fans to support Kalvin Phillips

The 28-year-old was captured apparently giving a middle-finger gesture towards fans on Saturday.

David Moyes has urged Hammers fans to get behind Kalvin Phillips
Kalvin Phillips and David Moyes David Moyes has urged Hammers fans to get behind Kalvin Phillips (Richard Sellers/PA)

David Moyes has told angry West Ham fans that on-loan midfielder Kalvin Phillips needs their support, not their abuse.

Phillips’ unhappy loan stint at West Ham hit a new low on Saturday after he was involved in an angry exchange with supporters following the 4-3 Premier League defeat by Newcastle.

The 28-year-old was captured apparently giving a middle-finger gesture towards fans who had criticised him as he boarded the team bus.

But Moyes refused to condemn Phillips’ actions and urged the London Stadium crowd to get behind the England international.

“Kalvin’s a human being and can do things which we all do at difficult times,” the Hammers boss said.

Kalvin Phillips’ unhappy loan stint hit a new low on Saturday
West Ham United v Aston Villa – Premier League – London Stadium Kalvin Phillips’ unhappy loan stint hit a new low on Saturday (John Walton/PA)

“What he needs is support behind him, people to help him and we’re going to stand with him and help him as much as we possibly can. Obviously we need all our supporters to give all our players, whoever it is, their support.”

West Ham had been 3-1 ahead at St James’ Park when Phillips was sent on as a substitute with 21 minutes remaining.

He gave away a disputed penalty by inadvertently kicking the leg of Anthony Gordon while trying to clear the ball and was also beaten too easily by Harvey Barnes before he hit Newcastle’s last-gasp winner.

Phillips had previously been at fault for goals in his first two matches since joining from Manchester City in January and was needlessly sent off in his fourth, at Nottingham Forest.

The former Leeds favourite was hauled off at half-time on his last start – when West Ham were 2-0 down at home to Burnley – and subsequently lost his place in the England squad.

Phillips will be on the bench again for the home game with Tottenham on Tuesday night, but Moyes insisted he could still turn what has been a nightmare loan move so far into a successful one.

“He’s fine, he’s back training and we’ve all moved on from the weekend. We’ve got a big game coming up and we’re getting ready for that now,” added Moyes.

“Kalvin Phillips is a really good player, an international player and I do believe he is an excellent footballer. And I do believe we can still make something out of the time we’ve got left with him here.”