Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 22 August 2019

Manuel Pellegrini 'ashamed' after West Ham suffer shock FA Cup defeat to AFC Wimbledon

Premier League side soundly beaten by AFC Wimbledon, who are bottom of League One

Manuel Pellegrini was furious after West Ham were knocked out of the FA Cup. Reuters
Manuel Pellegrini was furious after West Ham were knocked out of the FA Cup. Reuters

West Ham United manager Manuel Pellegrini tore into his players after the Premier League club suffered a shock defeat in the FA Cup fourth round to AFC Wimbledon on Saturday.

West Ham, 10th in the English top flight, were emphatically beaten 4-2 by a team that sit bottom of third-tier League One. The London side found themselves 3-0 down after 46 minutes, and despite fighting back to reduce the deficit to 3-2, am 88th minute goal from Toby Sibbick ensured a famous victory for Wimbledon.

Pellegrini publicly slammed his players after the match, saying: "Was I angry at half-time? Yes of course. I was ashamed of them.

"I didn't expect it, the attitude, playing against a team that sits two divisions below us, but in football, you can lose in two or three balls.

"They started the way we needed to start and when you have such high pace with the quality of the players and we didn't have the same level."

Marko Arnautovic was left out of the squad following recent speculation linking the Austrian forward with a move to China.

Yet 10 minutes after the final whistle West Ham announced Arnautovic had signed a new contract, although they made no mention of the length of the extension.

Pellegrini, not at all impressed by the whole Arnautovic saga this month, refused to even discuss the announcement.

"I only talk about the cup," the Chilean said. "Ask me about the game today and I will answer. Any other question I will not answer."

By contrast, it was a sweet evening for Dons manager Wally Downes, a fully paid-up member of the original Wimbledon 'Crazy Gang' from back in the day, as well as a former West Ham coach.

"It was terrific, I'm really pleased for the boys, they put in a shift, said Downes, whose side only four days earlier were beaten 3-0 at home by Fleetwood.

"Of course, you don't expect to be 3-0 up against a Premier League team. I said you don't get medals at half-time in any game, it was important we approached the second half well. We proved that by getting the third goal, it was terrific.

"The first time they've not performed for me was Tuesday night. Having to play this game the fear factor kicked in. If they'd played as badly it would have been a cricket score. The attitude was spot on tonight."

Updated: January 27, 2019 11:07 AM

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