Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Middlesbrough 0 West Ham 2

Piquionne started this game on his own up front. Collison and Cole dropped to the bench with Diop back in the starting eleven and Demel making his debut for West Ham.

West Ham had started the last few games on the back foot. Not this evening! In the opening minutes it was all West Ham. Allardyce would have been pleased with the high tempo start and even more pleased that this pressure was rewarded with a goal.

In the 9th minute Piquionne met a Taylor cross with a diving header to open the scoring for West Ham. In the 14th minute Middlesbrough had their first good opening in the match. A long ball forward saw McDonald get in behind the West Ham defence. Luckily for West Ham McDonald struck the ball straight at Green.

This effort seemed to spur Middlesbrough on a bit and they began to see more of the ball. In the 32nd minute McDonald again got in behind the West Ham defence from a long ball forward. Once again Green was able to pull off a good save to preserve West Ham's lead.

In the 44th minute Boro created another good chance. Emnes' shot however deflected off Tomkins and hit the side of Green's net.

The first good chance in the second half fell to Diop in the 59th minute. Diop beat two men inside the area before poking the ball just wide of the post. In the 61st minute Haroun rose to meet a Boro corner at the far post but headed wide.

In the 69th minute Cole came on for Piquionne. Immediately Cole raced for a ball and the keeper came out and handled the ball outside the area. The ref gave the freekick to West Ham but refused to book or send off the keeper. Taylor crossed the ball in from the freekick but the ball was too high for the players of both sides and drifted out of play.

In the 83nd minute a Nolan 16 yard volley flew over the bar. With seconds left in the game Bates made a complete hash of a McCartney long ball, Cole bounced on the chance and rounded Steele in goal before slotting home to give West Ham their fourth win on the trot.

Carew and Baldock Out

West Ham will face Middlesbrough tonight without John Carew and Sam Baldock. Speaking about tonight's clash Sam Allardyce said,

"Unfortunately we picked up the injury to Sam and an injury to John in training on Sunday, sadly. That limits our numbers a little bit. We've only travelled with 17 including young Dan Potts, so you can see how short of numbers we are again."

In other news Allardyce said that West Ham are currently in negotiations with James Tomkins over a new contract. Last week David Gold said that West Ham will reject any approach in January for Tomkins. Allardyce has now revealed that West Ham are keen for the defender to sign a new deal,

"James is not one of those running short of a contract term. It still has about 2½ years to run. We've been negotiating with him and will continue that in January. I am optimistic. We can ill afford to lose any players at this stage of the season."

Saturday, November 26, 2011

West Ham 3 Derby 1

West Ham started with Cole instead of Carew and with Taylor on the bench.

Derby would have been far happier than West Ham with the first 45 minutes. West Ham's disjointed display wasn't helped when Baldock was forced off with a hamstring injury after 20 minutes. Piquionne came on to replace the injured striker.

As the half progressed Derby became more confident and in the 34th minute took the lead. Collison lost the ball in midfield and Derby broke forward with purpose. Priskin drifted away from Tomkins, who was caught ball-watching, received the ball and slotted the ball into the bottom left hand corner of the goal from just inside the area.

After the goal West Ham did push forward a little more. In truth they didn't look destined to equalise until in the 44th minute O'Brien crossed from the right touchline and Cole managed to head home from 6 yards.

West Ham came out for the second half with a lot more purpose and a lot more pace on and off the ball. West Ham's pressure on the Derby goal was rewarded in the 64th minute with a beautiful goal from Nolan. Collison clipped a high awkward ball back to Nolan who volleyed the ball into the bottom left hand corner of the goal from 22 yards.

West Ham put the game beyond doubt in the 75th minute. Cole played the ball to Piquionne who was barged over and fell just inside the corner of the penalty area. The replay showed that the initial foul was outside the area but the referee gave the penalty. Noble stepped up and struck the ball home. Fielding dived the right way but failed to get anything on the ball.

After West Ham's third goal they played some nice football and dominated the possession. In the 86th minute a short corner to Collison was crossed into the box and Piquionne headed goalwards from 7 yards only to see the ball cleared off the line.

Another good win from West Ham sees them edge closer to Southampton at the top of the league. It's a tough away game to Middlesbrough next on Tuesday night.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Barcelona Equal West Ham Record

The Sun say QPR are keen on a January bid for James Tomkins but West Ham will reject any bid. The Sun quote David Gold as saying,

"He's not for sale for £3m. Nobody is up for sale. There's no plan to sell. We'll do all we can to keep our top players. Our goal is promotion."

KUMB report that Barcelona have equalled West Ham's record of scoring in 27 successive European games. Barcelona will beat West Ham's record on 6th December if they manage to score against BATE in their next Champion's League game.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Taylor Back

Matt Taylor played in a West Ham development squad last night. Taylor played for sixty minutes and even got on the score-sheet. Sears got West Ham's other goal in a 3-2 loss to an Ipswich XI.

Hopefully this means that Taylor will soon be back to full fitness and may even feature against Derby on Saturday.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Cole Not Leaving in January

The Daily Telegraph claims that there have been rumours that Carlton Cole would leave West Ham in January. They say however that Carlton Cole has no interest in leaving West Ham.

Cole said,

"I know there have been rumours about me leaving but that is all they are. People are trying to line themselves up for January and see what is happening with players they might be interested in. That is normal, it happens every window, but I am happy at West Ham. I am good and want to play more."

The Mirror say that West Ham target Andy O’Brien has gone on strike. West Ham recently made an attempt to loan the 32 year old Leeds defender but were knocked back by Leeds.

Leeds boss Grayson said,

"Andy O’Brien came to me on Friday and said he didn’t want to play for the football team again. My bottom line is that he will never play for me again at this football club."

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Coventry 1 West Ham 2

There wasn't a lot to shout about for either side for much of the first half. Both sides seemed to cancel each other out and the game wasn't helped by some over fussy refereeing that made the game into a rather stop-start affair.

Neither side showed any real threat going forward until the 33rd minute when a low cross from the right-wing into the West Ham area found its way to Platt on the six yard line, Platt turned and shot past Green to open the scoring for Coventry.

The only real West Ham effort on goal was a 20 yard effort from Noble that flew over the bar. Faubert also momentarily worried the keeper. From 40 yards out his mis-hit cross (I'm pretty sure it wasn't a shot) for a second looked like it might catch Murphy off his line and drop just under the crossbar. In the end however the ball was just a few yards too high.

West Ham could count themselves unlucky going into the break a goal behind. There was only one real chance in the whole 45 minutes but Platt was assured enough on the ball to make it count for Coventry.

Unlike a Conservative budget however West Ham do actually have a Plan B. His name is Carlton Cole and he came on after the break for Carew. Luckily for Cole the rest of the West Ham side also finally turned up and from the the start of the second half they attacked the Coventry goal.

West Ham's pressure paid off in the 69th minute when a long punt up field was controlled by Cole, who then drove into the area and scored with a low shot. Six minutes later and West Ham grabbed the lead in bizarre fashion.

Piquionne attempted a diving header at a Faubert cross but, instead of connecting with the ball, Piquionne dived beneath the cross. The ball then bounced off the striker's marker (who was presumably struck immobile from shock at Piq's diving effort) and ricocheted off of the prostrate Piquionne and dribbled over the goal-line to give West Ham the lead.

As is the way of West Ham, Coventry then spent the rest of the game throwing everything forward and West Ham faced ten minutes more-or-less camped inside their own half. Some resolute defending however kept Coventry at bay and West Ham chalked up another impressive away win.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Stech Recalled

According to the BBC West Ham have recalled goalkeeper Marek Stech from his loan spell at League One side Yeovil five days early.

The Sun claim West Ham have made a move to sign Arsenal defender Sebastien Squillaci on loan. However the paper says that Arsenal are keen to sell the player in January. FIFA rules say a player can only be registered with two teams in a season and loaning Squillaci would rule out selling him in the new year.

Friday, November 11, 2011

West Ham After More Players

The Express claim West Ham are keen on loaning Manchester City defender Nedum Onuoha.

The Sun say West Ham wan to sign Southend's Kane Ferdinand, cousin of Rio and Anton. The paper say Allardyce is ready to meet Southend's £500,000 valuation of the player.

17 year old Boreham Wood midfielder Pelly Ruddock has been invited to have a trial with West Ham. West Ham are also rumoured to be keen on 21 year old Swedish winger Mervan Celik.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Reid Out with Dislocated Shoulder

The Sun say that Marseille are targeting Carlton Cole. The paper claim that West Ham value Cole at £6million but Marseille are not willing to go that high.

The Star say that Carlton Cole is playing with an injury that means he can not train. They quote Cole as saying,

"Everyone knows I’ve had knee troubles but it hasn’t been the same problem. I twinged my medial knee ligament against Crystal Palace and it’s been niggling ever since.

"But I don’t need rest – I need to train. I think I’ve only had one training session for the past month-and-a-half."

The Mail say Winston Reid has dislocated a shoulder, Sam Allardyce is now keen to bring in another central defender on loan. Big Sam said,

"My main priority is to find a central defender to loan for the next two or three months. Abdoulaye Faye and James Tomkins were outstanding against Hull on Saturday but they were the only two fit defenders we have at the club at the moment.

"I have to fill that position and help us carry on this great run of results that we are on."

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Hull 0 West Ham 2

West Ham started with Faye, Diop, Collison and Carew replacing Reid, O'Brien, Sears and Piquionne. Danny Potts was named as a substitute.

There wasn't much to shout about for either side in the first half. Faubert was lively for West Ham down the right wing but Carew looked off the pace up front.

During the break Carew was replaced by Cole. The introduction of Cole was exactly what West Ham seemed to have been waiting for. Four minutes after the restart a Noble corner was flicked on by Cole at the near post and Baldock smashed the ball home at the far post.

Eight minutes later and Cole was again the provider. This time he played a perfect pass to send Collison through. The young Welshman slotted the ball home from inside the area.

The second goal for West Ham spurred Hull into action. In the 64th minute Fryatt managed to beat Green after meeting a corner with his head. Luckily for West Ham the ball hit Noble on the goal-line and bounced straight into Green's hands. A minute later a Mclean shot required a good save from Green and a hurried clearance from Tomkins.

After that West Ham defended very well, with Green in particular in sparkling form. In the 90th minute Fryatt got in behind the West Ham defence and forced a very good save from Green. A minute into injury time and Green was forced into another save to keep out Hobb's header. Just before the final whistle Green again pulled off a brilliant save to deny Koren.

Another good away win from West Ham ensures they retain 2nd place in the league. They now go into a welcome two week break that hopefully will be enough time for some of the many injured players to recover.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Reid Out for Five Weeks

The Daily Mail say that Winston Reid is set to miss five weeks with a shoulder injury. Sam Allardyce is therefore scouring clubs hoping to bring another player in on loan. He said yesterday,

'It means another search in the loan market for a quality player.

'We’re looking forward to the international break after this weekend but, in the meantime, what we have to do is come away from Hull with points.

'I think we’ll win that one and then look in the two-week break to resolve some of our injury problems and - if possible - add to the squad with a loan player.'

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

West Ham 0 Bristol City 0

West Ham started with Tomkins, Sears and Piquionne on for Faye, Collison and Carew.

The game started unfortunately for West Ham with Reid having to be replaced by Faye as early as the 7th minute.

Sears was the first player to threaten the City goal. His shot in the 14th minute, from outside the area, hit the post, before being put behind for a corner by the City defence.

The next real shot in anger fell to City, against the run of play. In the 23rd minute Eliot fired in a low shot, but it was straight at Green.

In the 28th minute a Sears cross was headed goalwards by Piquionne but the ball was hoofed clear by Fontaine. In the 29th minute a Piquionne header, almost fell to Baldock but James managed to gather the ball.

West Ham probably had the best of the first half but Bristol City looked dangerous at times on the break. In the 41st minute Elliott shot from 10 yards but Green made a comfortable save. In the 43rd minute Adomah shot wide of the right hand post from just outside the area.

Two minutes into injury time at the end of the half a Faubert cross was headed straight at James by Piquionne, he should have scored.

Straight from the kick-off Piquionne broke forward and shot wide of the goal from 10 yards. A minute later Piquionne headed just wide from a Faubert cross. Three minutes after that City came close to opening the scoring, Woolford shot, Green blocked the shot and Faye just got in to clear the ball before Maynard ran in to knock the ball home.

In the 50th minutes Tomkins headed straight at James from a Noble freekick. In the 55th minute a Baldock flicked header flew just wide from a Faubert cross. West Ham continued to pile on the pressure. In the 62nd minute Nolan shot, after being set up by Piquionne, but again the ball flew straight to James.

In the 65th minute Noble crossed into the box, where Piquonne chested the ball down for Faubert, who fired over from 6 yards. Big Sam then took Baldock off and brought Cole on. 8 minutes later Diop came on for Sears.

In the 80th minute Cole shot just over the bar from just inside the penalty area. In the 90th minute Bolasie shot just wide for City. Thirty seconds later it was West Ham who almost sneaked the winner. Faubert crossed to the near post and Noble headed just wide. In the dying seconds it was West Ham who were on the back foot as City forced a couple of corners.

West Ham knocked on the door for much of this game but City defended well and in the end West Ham just didn't have the creative nous to pry open a well organised defence.

Alumnia Leaves, Hall Returns

The Daily Mirror say that West Ham are chasing Macclesfield's young right-back Elliott Hewitt. The 17-year-old Welshman is apparently attracting the attentions of a lot of clubs and The Mirror claims West Ham and Leeds had scouts watching him at the weekend.

Sky Sports report that Alumina has returned to Arsenal now that his loan spell at West Ham has ended.

Sporting Life report that West Ham have recalled striker Robert Hall from his loan spell at Oxford United. Hall has scored six times in 10 appearances for the League Two outfit.

Oxford chairman Kelvin Thomas said on Hall's return,

"The timing is tough as we had begun discussions on extending his loan for a longer period and there would have been no issue with this without West Ham's injury problems.

"The positive is that it is great for Robbie. He has come here, played well, scored goals and had that little bit of experience.

"West Ham are very happy with the way he has been looked after and the way he has played and have taken him back to be involved with the first-team squad."

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