West Ham 2 Newcastle 2
West Ham started with Neill and Tomkins again paired in the centre at the back and Ashton up front with Zamora.
West Ham came out with all guns firing and made all the early running. In the 3rd minute Faubert curled a free-kick from the edge of the box just over the bar. In the 5th minute Ashton shot right-footed from the edge of the box but it was straight at the keeper. Three minutes later Harper came out for a McCartney cross, missed it, but Zamora headed over. Two minutes after that McCartney and Ljungberg exchanged passes on the left wing. McCartney swung in a great cross and Mark Noble slotted the ball past Harper.
That was too much fortune smiling on West Ham so fortune decided to go back into hiding. In the 19th minute Ljungberg fell awkwardly with Taylor falling onto him. Ljungberg was stretchered off and Boa Morte came on to replace him. Fortune then decided to come out of hiding and two minutes later West Ham were two goals up. Zamora flicked the ball onto Ashton who turned and shot the ball home from 18 yards.
West Ham continued to dominate the play with Newcastle not managing a single shot or winning a single corner in the first 40 minutes. In the 37th minute West Ham had two glorious chances to make it three after Faubert found space in the box, but his shot was blocked. Boa Morte then followed up after making a couple of yards for himself, however he drove a soft effort straight at Harper.
Then in the 42nd minute Martins, with Newcastle's first shot of the game, lobbed the ball from the centre of the penalty area 12 yards into the back of the net. Three minutes later and Newcastle's second shot of the game by Martins was redirected by Geremi with his head into the back of the net and the score was levelled.
You have to say West Ham were extremely unlucky not to go in at half time with a sizeable lead. West Ham battered Newcastle for 40 minutes, the Toon managed two and half shots in the whole half and come away with two goals - lucky northern monkeys.
West Ham started the second half on the front foot. In the 48th minute Ashton shot from twenty yards but the ball flew way over the bar. In the 53rd minute first Ashton had an 18 yard effort blocked by Edgar then Boa Morte shot wide from the same distance. In the 56th minute Ashton fired a shot across the mouth of the goal.
In the 68th minute Cole was brought on for Zamora. In the 71st minute Ashton collected a McCartney back heel but shot straight at Harper from the edge of the box. In the 75th minute Ashton volleyed from 12 yards but shot wide. In the 79th minute McCartney fired a shot way over the bar. A minute later and Ashton fired in another effort and Harper did well to tip the ball over the bar.
In the 83rd minute Michael Owen hand-balled in his own penalty area right in front of the referee but Rennie decided to ignore the Hammer's pleas. In the 85th minute Noble had an 18 yard effort saved by Harper.
In the 90th minute Newcastle finally managed a 3rd shot in the game and with West Ham's recent luck the crowd were delighted to see Green save.
Alan Curbishley will now probably spend the week wondering how the fans can be happier with him after a draw than after a win.