West Ham were enjoying a decent season - a poor start as the new Pellegrini way bedded in - but then they seemed to have found their mojo with a string of excellent performances including humbling Man United and Arsenal.
Then top striker Marco Arnautovic announced that he wanted to defect to China! After much squad-unsettling shenanigans, it appeared that the club had agreed a deal with him to stay, at least until the Summer. problem solved.
Well no, actually. The whole business seems to have upset the clubs rhythm and after an excellent record-breaking December, they had had a series of really disappointing results including an embarrassing cup exit to League One Wimbledon and a humiliating display against Wolves last week.
Understandably, fans are wondering what has gone wrong. Trevor Turnstile, a season tickey holder in the Bobby Moore stand has come up with one intriguing explanation for the clubs sudden demise. Speaking from his backgarden manshed in Pitsea, Trev has revealed that he is pretty much certain that Arnie has been bought by a Chinese club who have then cunningly replaced him with a crude plastic facsimile. With China known for the production of cheap imitations, this may not be as whacko as it sounds - It's hard to equate the Arnautovic on show against Wolves with the real abrasive and incisive Marko! He hardly touched the ball, made few of his trademark energetic runs to create space before finally limping off with an 'injury' having barely influenced proceedings.
However, other fans have been quick to note the one similarity with the 'real' Arnautovic - the media reports have once again been all about him this week as we have sweated over his fitness for tonight's clash with Liverpool.