Paul Merson explains why he has been so shocked by West Ham progress, feels sorry for fans

Paul Merson answers questions during Gillette Soccer Saturday Live with Jeff Stelling on March 19, 2012 at the Bournemouth International Centre in Bournemouth, England.

West Ham are a club in crisis on and off the pitch and pundit Paul Merson is feeling supporters' pain.

David Moyes, Manager of West Ham United reacts during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Burnley at London Stadium on March 10, 2018 in London, England.

Losing three games on the bounce and conceding 11 goals in the process has seen the Hammers dragged into the thick of the relegation battle.

The 3-0 home defeat to Burnley last time out saw fan unrest come to a head with supporters invading the pitch to protest against the way the club has been run by co-owners David Sullivan and David Gold and vice-chairman Karren Brady.

Homegrown Hammer and captain Mark Noble was seen rugby tackling one of the fans while another took the corner flag and planted it in the centre circle in scenes reminiscent of the Bonds scheme protests back in 1992.

A West Ham United fan holds up the corner flag while he invades the pitch as the players react during the Premier League match between West Ham United and Burnley at London Stadium on...

It is all a far cry from what supporters expected when leaving - many reluctantly - their beloved Boleyn Ground home back in 2016.

Sullivan and Gold sold the move to fans as a necessity to be able to compete with the Premier League elite in the transfer market and on the pitch.

But back-to-back seasons of flirting with relegation has brought the facade crashing down.

And pundit Paul Merson admitted in his Daily Star column he has been shocked by West Ham's lack of progress and sympathises with disillusioned fans.

"I don’t really blame West Ham fans for being angry," Merson said in the Daily Star.

West Ham United Joint Chairmen David Sullivan and David Gold (L) chat prior to the Barclays Premier League match between Wigan Athletic and West Ham United at the DW Stadium on May 15,...

"They’ve listened to a load of broken promises, they don’t like the stadium and their club hasn’t brought in any quality players. It must be hard to take.

"But those fans need to stick with their club. They’re not bottom like West Brom. Not even bottom three. But if they desert their team, West Ham will go down.

"I really thought West Ham would be competing for the top four in the next five years after moving to the new stadium. But that looks a million miles away."

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