West Ham 0 Stoke 1
West Han started with Dyer, Mido, Da Costa, Spector and Noble. It was a fairly scrappy start to the game and as ever West Ham's completely new starting eleven took a long time to get into the game.
Stoke had the better of the possession and of the goal chances in the first half hour. In the 6th minute Lawrence fired over from just inside the area. In the 8th minute Mido blocked a five yard shot from Faye at the expense of a corner. From the corner Faye then headed wide from 5 yards.
In the 29th minute Higginbotham headed wide from 7 yards. After that glaring miss West Ham then began to scrape their way back into the game. In the 33rd minute Parker played a through ball to Cole only for Sorensen to nick the ball from the striker's feet before he could bring it under control.
In the 35th minute Cole fired in shot from 20 yards, Sorensen parried the ball and it fell to Mido just 7 yards out and, with only the keeper to beat, Mido somehow managed only to fall over, rather than slot the ball home. In the 41st minute Parker made a good run to the edge of the box before passing to Behrami, wide left in the area, but Behrami's shot flew high and wide.
In the closing minutes of the half Stoke put the pressure back on the West Ham goal without managing to break the deadlock.
Diamanti replaced Dyer at half-time. At the start of the second half West Ham managed a couple of long range efforts by Parker and Cole, both of which were comfortably saved by Sorenson.
In the 59th minute Diamanti tried a long range freekick from at least 30 yrds which flew high and wide. A minute after that and Noble shot over from the edge of the area. In the 67th minute Fuller replaced Etherington. Two minutes after coming on he received the ball on the edge of the penalty area, was allowed to turn then just waltzed past Da Costa and Upson before beating Green from 8 yards.
After that West Ham never really looked like scoring. Ilan and McCarthy were brought on and West Ham ended with four strikers on the pitch but never troubled Sorensen. In the 83rd minute Spector did well to make room for himself and shoot from 15 yards but his shot flew wide. In the 88th minute Cole headed wide from 7 yards. In stoppage time Ilan shot wide and then with seconds to go Diamanti actually forced a save from the keeper from a freekick but it was too little too late.
With Hull winning today and now on the same points as us with a game in hand it looks like we really could be staring relegation in the face. This team seems to have no ideas going forward and also seems to have forgotten how to defend. It is hard to see how this will get turned around.