Fans baffled as TNT Sports bemoan “flat” West Ham vs. Liverpool atmosphere

Throughout the first half of West Ham vs. Liverpool, TNT commentators Darren Fletcher and Ally McCoist criticised the “flat” atmosphere for a 12.30pm kickoff.

With both sides suffering major setbacks in their previous games – West Ham losing 5-2 to Crystal Palace and Liverpool beaten 2-0 by Everton – a reaction was expected.

But it was a slow start in east London, with few real opportunities until Luis Diaz struck the post, which was soon followed by Jarrod Bowen’s opener.

In the gantry were the TNT Sports duo of Fletcher and McCoist, who are arguably two of the best commentators on rotation in the UK.

LONDON, ENGLAND - Saturday, April 27, 2024: Liverpool players before the FA Premier League match between West Ham United FC and Liverpool FC at the London Stadium. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Much of their focus in the first half, though, was on the lack of atmosphere in the London Stadium, with McCoist confused at why it felt so “flat.”

Given it was a 12.30pm kickoff and both sides – albeit with slim hopes – were left with their major objectives out of reach beforehand, perhaps there should have been little surprise.

Liverpool supporters pointed this out on social media – and were joined by rival fans watching on, too.

Fans were baffled that they couldn’t work it out…

It wasn’t just Liverpool fans, either…

In the post-match coverage of the Merseyside derby, Wayne Rooney criticised Virgil van Dijk for bringing up the fact Liverpool had another 12.30pm kickoff to prepare for.

“Just get on with it,” were Rooney’s words, and to an extent the former Everton striker was on the money.

But the point stands that, if broadcasters continue to schedule early kickoffs for teams in such a congested calendar, the fans aren’t always going to be immediately fired up.

It doesn’t just impact the players, it impacts those travelling for hours to watch them – and that, in turn, impacts the spectacle TNT and the rest depend on.