Former Hammer Alvin Martin has described the scenes of West Ham supporter unrest in their 3-0 defeat at home to Burnley as a “real low for the club.”
A number of West Ham fans have voiced their discontent in the past at chairmen David Gold and David Sullivan but tensions finally spilled over after Ashley Barnes gave Burnley the lead midway through the second-half.
The goal sparked a shocking chain of events which saw club captain Mark Noble wrestle a disgruntled fan who invaded the pitch to the ground, while one fan ran on and stuck a corner flag into the middle of the pitch.
Shocking pictures as captain Mark Noble shoves protesting fan to the floor
‘Toxic on the pitch and off it’ – Twitter users react to shocking scenes at West Ham v Burnley
Manager David Moyes condemned the behaviour of the pitch invaders, saying: “We want the supporters behind us, but you can’t cross the line and come onto the pitch.”
The club also announced that it would be conducting a full and thorough investigation into the incidents.
And Martin, who served as a player for the east London club from 1976-1996 called for all the issues at West Ham to be resolved promptly.
Martin said: “These are worrying times, there are no two ways about it. I’ve had an association with that club for 45 years and I think I’ve seen most things during that 45 years.
“But today is a real low for the club.
“When you see the separation between the board and the supporters to that degree, it’s concerning.
“I just hope that there can be some common sense where somehow we can focus on what’s best for the club and the other issues need to be sorted out.”
David Moyes’ side are just three points above the Premier League’s relegation zone, with their next game coming at home to fellow strugglers Southampton on March 31st.
And Martin claimed the Hammers’ next run of games could make or break the club and failure to get results could see West Ham go into the wilderness.
He added: “The games that are coming up are unbelievable. Southampton at home who are in a fight, Chelsea away and then Stoke at home are the next three games.
“The next three games are going to make or break our club.
“We’ve gone down over the years and we’ve always come back. Sometimes it has been a blessing in disguise but these days it’s not as simple as that.
“If you go down in the Premier League there is a really good chance that you could go into the wilderness and that’s what worries me the most.”
talkSPORT’s Dean Ashton, who played for the Hammers from 2006-2009 was at the London Stadium for the game and he spoke of his disappointment over the situation.
The former striker also leapt to the defence of Noble for his confrontation with a fan.
Ashton said: “It’s so disappointing to see that from my old club there.
“That is not in Mark Noble’s character to react in that way so it kind of shows the tensions that were about in the stadium.
“I am all for people having a peaceful protest. I think that’s what certainly should have happened. The march probably should have been a peaceful protest and then you get down to the football once you’re in the stadium.
“I just feel for all the parents in there that had their kids there. That’s not the type of behaviour we want in the football stadium.”