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.