West Ham United outfoxed Leicester City to win 2-1 and keep their automatic
promotion hopes alive
West Ham United came from a goal down to record their thirteenth away win of
the season and take the race for automatic promotion to the final day of the
The Hammers won the game 2-1 courtesy of goals from defender Winston Reid
and midfielder Jack Collison having gone behind to a Jermaine Beckford
header. Manager Sam Allardyce was delighted with what he felt was a merited
victory for the Hammers at the King Power Stadium on Monday night, "That
was a well-deserved victory for us I feel," the West Ham United manager
said. "We got what we wanted which was the three points; it was a really
good performance but just maybe we were a bit slack on the finishing in the
second half. "The fans were great singing away in the corner for the whole
game. I think we've managed to send them home happy again which is
The Hammers began the game the better side with Ricardo Vaz Te, Collison and
captain Kevin Nolan all testing Kaspar Schmeichel in the Leicester goal. But
the visitors found themselves behind just after the half hour mark when
Beckford headed in Ben Marshall's cross. West Ham regrouped immediately and
fought their way back into the game just five minutes after the opener.
Matthew Taylor's fantastic driven cross from the left only needed a touch
and Reid obliged, stabbing the ball past Schmeichel. After the break there
was only one team who looked like winning it and after skipper Nolan had
passed up two good chances, the Hammers eventually took the lead just before
the hour mark. Gary O'Neil's shot was cleared by the Leicester defence but
only to Collison on the edge of the area who powered the ball into the
bottom corner from all of 25 yards.
Manager Allardyce was delighted with the way his team coped with going 1-0
down and fought their way back into the game. "We came back from being 1-0
down, which I didn't think we deserved to be, so that was great and we
carried on controlling the game from there on in. We created a lot of
chances after we got our second goal but unfortunately we didn't put any
The chances to make the game completely safe fell firstly to defender James
Tomkins, who headed wide, then Vaz Te and Collison failed to make the best
of a good shooting opportunity before Nolan missed a good chance right at
the end. However, Big Sam saw the victory as job done for West Ham and is
looking towards a dramatic final day with Southmapton now just two points
ahead. "We have stayed in the race until the final day which is what we
wanted to do and we will have to do our job on Saturday and hope Coventry
can help us at Southampton." Allardye said. "Our chance of automatic
promotion is better than before the game because we have won. Who knows what
will happen on Saturday, maybe Southampton will get the jitters or Coventry
will play without fear having already been relegated. What we have to do is
our job and win the game at home to Hull, if we do that you never know."
Duo receive PFA acclaim
James Tomkins and Mark Noble are in the 2011/12 PFA Championship Team of the
West Ham United pair James Tomkins and Mark Noble have been voted into the
2011/12 PFA Championship Team of the Year by their fellow professionals.
Centre-back Tomkins and midfielder Noble have both been recognised for their
outstanding contributions this season by being named in the XI at the PFA
Awards at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London on Sunday evening. However,
neither player was on hand to celebrate as the Hammers are preparing for
Monday's crucial npower Championship fixture at Leicester City in the
Midlands. Academy product Tomkins, 23, has netted four goals in 42 npower
Championship appearances this season, while also impressing with his
defensive strength and composure in possession. Noble, another homegrown
Hammer and the club's longest-serving player at the age of 24, has scored
eight goals - including seven nerveless penalties - in 43 league games this
term. Promotion rivals Southampton contributed three members of the side in
goalkeeper Kelvin Davis, midfielder Adam Lallana and striker Rickie Lambert,
while champions Reading are represented by left-back Ian Harte.
PFA Championship Team of the Year: Davis (Southampton), Clyne (Crystal
Palace), Tomkins (West Ham United), Davies (Birmingham City), Harte
(Reading), Lallana (Southampton), Whittingham (Cardiff), Noble (West Ham
United), Phillips (Blackpool), Lambert (Southampton), Rodriguez (Burnley).
Hammers fans win Cup
Supporters team West Ham iFC won the first-ever London Supporters' Cup on
West Ham iFC managed to lift the inaugural London Supporters' Cup on
Saturday, despite doing things the hard way. The Hammers looked all set to
lift the cup in a fairly routine manner as they went into the break two
goals to the good. Mark Blackburn put the fans' side 1-0 up after slotting
home from close range, after a dangerous deep free-kick from Will Bush found
its way to the defender. The Hammers had a chance to double that lead from
the spot just moments later. A blatant handball in the area from a Watford
player didn't go unnoticed from the man in black and he quickly gave the
penalty West Ham's way. Up stepped Bush to fire the boys in Claret and Blue
into a two goal lead going into the second half. Watford however still had
dreams of lifting the Cup themselves, and looked a much brighter side in the
second half. The Hornets managed to pull one back as a free-kick found the
back of the net, and within minutes West Ham's defence was punished again. A
long throw was only half cleared before eventually being bundled over the
line as the Hornets got their sting back. With just minutes to go it was
Watford that almost earnt themselves a fairytale win. Luckily Irons keeper
Cates was on top form as he saved from point-blank range, meaning that the
tie would have to be settled by penalties.
After a tense penalty shoot-out it was West Ham who lifted the silverware,
but yet again Watford made them sweat. Both sides scored four out of five of
their penalties meaning that sudden death was on the cards. However, Watford
missing their eighth penalty ended their dreams of Cup glory as the Hammers
punished the miss, meaning that Vinnie White's side were left victorious.
West Ham iFC manager White said: "We knew Watford would have a stronger
squad than when we faced earlier in the season so it certainly wasn't a
shock that they pushed us every minute. It was a great performance and
neither team deserved to lose. "Coates has pulled off a wonderful save
towards the end. I'm not sure how much he knew about but to me it looks like
it's going in all the way so it's a vital save. "In the end both teams
celebrated together as we're all good friends and I'd like to think it would
be the same if the boot was on the other foot. Neither team deserved to lose
that game, especially with the cruel way of the penalties."
* West Ham iFC are running a fundraising night at The Boleyn pub on 25 May
with tickets available on the door or from @westhamfansfc in advance. They
are £6 each and include a raffle ticket, where the prizes include a signed
Mark Noble shirt. *
Moncur stars for Dons
George Moncur was one of three West Ham United loanees in action at the
George Moncur celebrated an AFC Wimbledon win with a goal against promotion
hopefuls Torquay United on Saturday as three West Ham United loanees were in
action. The West Ham starlet curled expert goal past Gulls' keeper Robert
Olenik in the 85th minute, helping to earn the Don's their first win in five
and severely denting Torquay's bid for promotion. Elsewhere, Cristian
Montano played just over an hour for Oxford United as they claimed a point
against Plymouth Argyle. The away side dominated the game but just couldn't
capitalise on the pressure they were putting Plymouth under. The result
leaves Oxford in eighth place - two outside the play-offs. Meanwhile in
Spain winger Pablo Barrera made a substitute appearance for Real Zaragoza
but couldn't stop his side from going down to a 1-0 defeat away at Real
Mallorca. The Mexican winger played the final 20 minutes at the Iberostar
Stadium, his 14th appearance of the season.
Leicester 1 West Ham 2
23 April 2012
Last updated at 21:53
By Emlyn Begley
West Ham came from behind to beat Leicester and take their battle with
Southampton for automatic promotion to the Premier League to the final day.
The Foxes led when Ben Marshall's cross was headed home by Jermaine Beckford
but five minutes later Winston Reid prodded home a leveller from Matty
Taylor's centre. And Jack Collison scored the Hammers' winner, firing home
from 25 yards. West Ham are two points behind the Saints going into the
final day. The Hammers need to beat Hull City on the final day and hope that
Southampton lose to relegated Coventry. If the Saints draw, West Ham would
need to win by three or four - depending on how many goals the Saints score
- to clinch promotion. West Ham started the brighter and Ricardo Vaz Te
almost got onto the end of Mark Noble's through ball but it ran just too far
and into Kasper Schmeichel's hands in the Leicester goal. The Foxes
goalkeeper then saved well down low from Collison's shot after Sol Bamba was
caught dawdling by Carlton Cole. Noble's free-kick was headed wide by Cole,
who was then only denied by a last-ditch Wes Morgan challenge after chasing
onto Noble's 60-yard ball.
Final day permutations
If Southampton draw on the final day and West Ham win but score four more
goals than the Saints, their records would be identical. Their head-to-head
record would then be taken into account, which Southampton would win after a
1-0 win and 1-1 draw.
Leicester showed they would give the Hammers a game, despite having little
to play for, and Beckford headed wide from Lloyd Dyer's cross. At the other
end, Nolan flashed a half-volley wide with the outside of his boot and
moments later his side fell behind. Marshall won the ball from Taylor on the
right-hand side and floated it into the centre where Beckford made amends
for his previous miss. Leicester's lead was shortlived though. Noble rolled
the ball to Taylor, whose wonderful low cross was converted from close range
by Reid. And with the momentum all West Ham's, Vaz Te had a powerful effort
deflected wide by Morgan, Tomkins headed past the post and Vaz Te flashed a
After the break, West Ham continued to chase the goal they needed to keep
their automatic promotion dreams alive. Soon after the restart, Noble hit a
brilliant shot from the edge of box that went just wide and then fired well
over after Gary O'Neil found him unmarked from a similar distance. And their
persistence paid off when O'Neil's shot was cleared by the Leicester defence
but only as far as Collison, who smashed the ball home. Schmeichel got a
hand to the effort but could not keep it out. Moments later Collison could
have killed the game off but his shot was deflected over by Bamba. The
Hammers continued to push for a third goal to seal the game and boost their
goal difference and Tomkins headed wide, while Vaz Te and Collison failed to
capitalise on a great chance to shoot in the box. Leicester's Marshall had
an effort from 25 yards out that was easily handed by Green. And minutes
later, perhaps sensing that the game was not yet won, Sam Allardyce brought
on defender Danny Collins for striker Cole and the Hammers saw the game out.
After Nolan missed a chance to add a late third, they almost paid the
ultimate price with Green having to save Morgan's last-gasp header.
West Ham boss Sam Allardyce: "I think that under the pressure and under the
circumstances it was a fantastic victory, especially as we had to come from
behind - and Jack Collison's winning goal was a cracker. "It is a good night
and we have stayed in the race, which is what we wanted, and now we have got
to do our job and hope that Southampton get the jitters and Coventry can do
us a favour. "The pressure on them will be enormous to finish off the
fantastic season they have had and hopefully that will put them off their
game. "The odds are Southampton will win the game - that is what everyone
expects - but football is a strange game and any team on a day can cause an
upset, as we have seen all season."
Leicester boss Nigel Pearson: "It is a disappointing way to round off the
home campaign. Their clinical finishing was the difference but in the end
they had too much for us and I have no complaints. "Richie Wellens will have
a scan on Tuesday. It doesn't look promising at the moment. And likewise
with Andy King, who has a foot injury that is maybe similar to his original
injury but hopefully isn't as bad. "They are things we could do without at
this stage of the season, certainly with our numbers being short in
Leicester City 1 West Ham Utd 2
Filed: Monday, 23rd April 2012
By: Staff Writer
West Ham's slim chances of automatic promotion are still alive following a
narrow yet well-deserved victory at the King Power stadium tonight. Winston
Reid's first half strike and a thunderbolt from Jack Collison after the
break earned Sam Allardyce's side three priceless points that brings
automatic promotion tantalisingly close.
Should West Ham beat Hull at the Boleyn Ground on Saturday and Southampton
lose at home to Coventry, the Irons will finish the season in second spot.
Alternatively should Southamton draw against the Sky Blues any West Ham win
by a three clear goals or more would be enough to see United promoted. Of
course, with Coventry already relegated the odds are still heavily stacked
in Southampton's favour this weekend. But having already blown one chance to
gain promotion at Middlesbrough last weekend, who's to say that nerves won't
get the better of Nigel Adkins' side once again? Naturally, Saturday's games
would have been academic had the Hammers failed to beat Leicester tonight -
and that looked to be on the cards when Jermaine Beckford put the home side
ahead on 25 minutes against the run of play with a header.
But when Winston Reid pounced on Matt Taylor's near post cross six minutes
ahead of the break to restore parity it was game on once again. West Ham
came out of the blocks the stronger after the break and it was no surprise
when Jack Collison fired the Irons into the lead for the first time on the
night with a wonderful strike from all of 25 yards. That goal was enough to
win the game for West Ham, who completed an incredible 13th away win of the
season with tonight's victory. It could have been even more comprehensive
had Kevin Nolan managed to beat Kaspar Schmeichel when left with just the
'keeper to beat in the final minute of the game but the Dane smothered the
West Ham captain's shot. How instrumental that miss will be for West Ham
will only be revealed this weekend - but at least the Hammers have given
themselves a great chance of finishing in the top two, even if their fate is
out of their hands.
Allardyce harbours slim hopes
Big Sam hopes Southampton will get the jitters
By Razwan Mirza. Last Updated: April 23, 2012 10:31pm
West Ham boss Sam Allardyce believes his side have a 'slim chance' of
claiming the final automatic promotion spot in the Championship following
their 2-1 win at Leicester City. The third-placed Hammers took advantage of
Southampton'sdefeat to Middlesbrough to ensure the race goes to the final
weekend of the season. West Ham will now need to beat Hull City at Upton
Park on Saturday and hope relegated Coventry do them a favour against the
Saints. Allardyce's side extended their club record of away wins in a season
to 13 at the King Power Stadium despite going a goal behind as Jermaine
Beckford gave City the lead. However, Winston Reid restored parity six
minutes before the break and just before the hour mark Jack Collison's
thunderbolt won the game for the visitors.
Manage Allardyce told Sky Sports 1: "It was a well deserved victory and I
think in the end it should have been by more but unfortunately we squandered
too many simple chances which left us a little nervous towards the end. "We
got exactly what we wanted tonight which was the victory. Like I said, I
thought it should have been by more if were a bit sharper, but a really good
performance and having to come from a goal down to win the game, which was a
terrific goal by Jack Collison, so it's a good night for us. "We've stayed
in the race now until the very, very end, which is what we wanted and we'll
have to do our job on Saturday and hope that Coventry can do a little bit at
Southampton and wait and see. "If Southampton get the jitters or the nerves
or Coventry play with no fear because they've got relegated now, you know,
who knows. But we have to beat Hull."
Asked how Southampton will be feeling after Monday night, Allardyce added:
"A little bit more nervous now than they were before the game I would think.
"We've kept the pressure on them, but it's still a slim chance."
Meanwhile, Kevin Nolan admits he's also hoping for a helping hand from
already-relegated Coventry. We knew we had to put the pressure on
Southampton. We're not expecting much on Saturday, but it was always
positive for us to make sure that we kept our momentum going and our wins
going," said the Hammers captain.
"Hopefully Coventry can do us a favour on Saturday, but it will be a bit
tougher for Southampton now. We didn't want to give it to them, we wanted to
make them earn it. They've been great all season but let's see if they can
get over the finishing line now."
West Ham ensure final day drama
Last updated: 23rd April 2012
West Ham kept their hopes of automatic promotion alive from the Championship
with a 2-1 win at Leicester City on Monday night. Anything but victory would
have handed Southampton their return to the Premier League behind champions
Reading and left the Hammers in the play-offs. Saints remain favourites to
follow the Royals up in second spot but at least Sam Allardyce's men have
made the south coast club earn their reward on the pitch at Saturday
lunchtime against already-relegated Coventry. It looked like that may not be
the case when Jermaine Beckford headed Leicester in front against the run of
play. But West Ham responded quickly through Winston Reid before Jack
Collison smashed home the winning goal in the second half. Joint-leading
scorer Carlton Cole looked a handful on his return from a knee problem and
it was his presence that forced a mistake from Sol Bamba inside his own
penalty area after six minutes. The Leicester centre-half dwelled on the
ball, Cole dispossessed him and teed-up Gary O'Neil whose low shot was well
held by Kasper Schmeichel getting down to his right at full stretch. Cole
went close himself with 15 minutes gone, glancing a header wide from Mark
Noble's whipped free-kick.
Immediately afterwards, the England striker found himself bearing down on
Schmeichel - with Wes Morgan in tow - after latching on to Noble's
through-ball. As Cole was about to pull the trigger 12 yards out, Morgan
made a superb last-ditch tackle. Leicester were forced into a change after
22 minutes when captain Richie Wellens limped off injured. Lloyd Dyer
replaced him and the winger almost made an immediate impact, crossing
dangerously from the right but Beckford headed wide.
West Ham threatened again when Kevin Nolan volleyed a dropping ball narrowly
wide from the left-hand side of the area. It was against the run of play
when Beckford put the hosts in front after 34 minutes. Ben Marshall evaded
Matt Taylor down the right and crossed for Beckford to plant a header past
Robert Green. But it was a terrific response from the promotion chasers, who
were level within five minutes. Taylor whipped in a brilliant low cross and
Reid poked home from inside the six yard box. James Tomkins almost sent the
Hammers into half-time in front but his header from another Taylor cross
went inches wide. Perhaps concerned by the number of chances West Ham were
creating, Leicester boss Nigel Pearson made another change at the break.
Sean St Ledger replaced King, with Bamba moving into midfield.
However, West Ham still created opportunities and should have gone ahead
after 57 minutes but Nolan miscued horribly from a useful Noble pass. A
minute later though it was 2-1 as Collison thumped a powerful 18-yard effort
beyond an unsighted Schmeichel after St Ledger had initially blocked a shot
from O'Neil. The visitors took their foot off the gas a little, perhaps
trying to defend what they had, but still looked a threat on the break.
Ricardo Vaz Te and Collison passed up the chance to settle the game between
them with 16 minutes remaining - both hesitating inside the box to allow
former Hammer Paul Konchesky to make a brilliant saving tackle.
West Ham came within inches of a third goal late on as Taylor's low cross
from the left was turned inches past his own post by St Ledger. Nolan then
spurned a one-on-one in injury-time, tamely shooting straight at Schmeichel.
And the Hammers were almost made to pay for their latest missed chance but
Green hung on to Morgan's header at the death.
Vinny's Leicester Report
Vinny 2:53 Tue Apr 24
West Ham Online
Leicester City 1 West Ham United 2
West Ham kept their faint automatic promotion hopes alive with a 2-1 victory
at the King Power Stadium as Leicester became the latest team to be beaten
by a West Ham side whose away form continues to impress.
This was as standard as victory as you will see and we can be pleased that
in what was clearly a must win game that we actually succeeded in our task.
Whilst automatic promotion looks very unlikely given that all Southampton
need to do is beat relegated Coventry City on Saturday it still gives us a
chance and at least we will go into the last game of the season with
something to play for, however unlikely.
Although Leicester took a shock lead in the first half we always looked
comfortable and it was no surprise to see us get back on level terms quickly
and then take it to them in the second period.
The disappointing thing was not scoring more goals and that is not just
because I wanted to see us score a load for my own enjoyment but that with
Southampton's goal difference slightly better than ours, every goal counts.
After the game I couldn't help but dwell on all those missed opportunities
over the last few months. Even a win at Bristol City last week would have
made things a whole lot different and sent us into the last game on a more
But the time for 'if's' are now over and although the Play Off's look very
likely we need to go out against Hull and beat them so at least we can say
that we did our part. How awful would it be if Southampton did somehow get
beat and we only managed a draw? That would certainly irk me more than
Southampton just plainly winning.
There is little to complain about when reviewing this game against Leicester
as we were better than them for most of the game and fully deserved the
three points. For large periods they couldn't get near to us as we knocked
the ball about and if we had a bit more about ourselves in the striking
department then more goals would have followed.
But anything other than a win would have seen Southampton promoted and we
now have a chance and I am sure they will be feeling the pressure.
Allardyce made two changes to the side who were held at Ashton Gate last
In midfield Henri Lansbury was dropped to the bench and replaced by Jack
Collison. This was a surprise to many given that Lansbury had been playing
well of late and Collison has been in retched form for the majority of the
Up front Carlton Cole returned after being side-lined with injury which
ruled him out of the Bristol City game and he replaced Nicky Maynard who had
picked up a knock.
Starting for Leicester City was former Hammer Paul Konchesky.
Much like our previous two games we started well and looked confident on the
ball with the opposition struggling to string passes together. It was clear
again that we were looking to hit our opponents early and then use our
formation to sit back.
Some early work down the left hand side saw Vaz Te put in a cross where Jack
Collison met the ball with a left footed effort which was perhaps not going
to hit the target but regardless it was blocked by the defender.
Cole won the ball from Leicester defender Bamba who had got himself into a
bit of a mess and Cole laid the ball back for Jack Collison to again strike
with his left foot and he made good connection with the ball but was saved
down low by Kasper Schmeichel.
With a quarter of the game gone, Cole had been doing well up against the big
defender Morgan in what seemed like a bit of a battle. A good turn from Cole
down the left saw Morgan bundle him to the ground with a free kick given.
It was take by Mark Noble and Cole got a flick on the ball but it went well
wide and the chance was gone.
About a minute later it would be those same two players involved again as
Noble played a brilliant pass in behind the Leicester back line for Cole to
run on to. With just the keeper to beat he hesitated for too long and Morgan
got back with a terrific challenge before he could pull the trigger.
Leicester midfielder Richie Wellens went down with injury and was forced to
come off moments later as he was replaced by Lloyd Dyer.
This change actually worked for Leicester as it gave them a bit of pace in
midfield and instantly Dyer was causing Demel problems with his first run
down the line ending in a good cross for Jermaine Beckford but his header
was poor and well wide when I thought he should have hit the target.
A ball into the area saw Nolan go up to challenge and his knock down into
space found Vaz Te who hit his shot into the ground goalwards but it was
blocked and away for a corner.
With around 30 minutes on the clock Gary O'Neil was booked for a cynical
challenge on Dyer.
Despite controlling most of the game and Robert Green having virtually
nothing to do, it was the home side who took the lead with 34 minutes
It was a frustrating goal to watch (most of them are) as Taylor was
dispossessed and Ben Marshall showed a good turn of pace down the right. He
only had one man to pick out in the area and that was Beckford and the cross
was inch perfect as Jermaine Beckford planted his header past the stranded
For me it was poor marking from James Tomkins who should have been closer to
him. There was only Beckford in the area so I am not sure who the defenders
were looking at. For all our possession and forward play we found ourselves
1-0 down pretty much out of the blue.
The West Ham support didn't let this get them down and they kept singing. I
think we knew that this was a bit of a shock goal and that we looked as if
we would open Leicester up at some point.
Only five minutes after conceding we got back on level terms as half time
It was a well worked goal as Matthew Taylor put in a superb low cross which
was on a plate for Winston Reid to score and make it 1-1.
The final few moments of the half saw a lot of end to end action with both
sides having a couple of corners although they came to nothing.
I was happy enough going in at half time because we simply had been the
better side and even after going a goal down we reacted well and got back
quickly. We had the momentum and I had the confidence that we would win this
one mainly because Leicester were not very good and we had so much space
when we were attacking.
We began the half much like the first in that we saw a lot of the ball and
it was Leicester doing the chasing. It was like we would have expected to
see at home this season with the opposition chasing us and making them work
for the ball.
Sadly it has more than often been the other way around which is why we find
ourselves coming up short.
Mark Noble had the first chance of the half as his corner was cleared and
worked back to him by Collison which saw Noble cut inside and unleash an
effort which flew just past the post in what would have been a fabulous
Another corner followed soon after as we continued our positive start to the
half. It really did look as though only one side cared about winning and
with Leicester having nothing to play for this can go some way to explaining
We should have be ahead on 57 minutes when Noble played a delightful ball
through to Kevin Nolan who had the goal at his mercy but he blazed his side
footed effort over the bar in what was a poor attempt.
But just two minutes later we would take the lead we had be threatening.
The passing move found O'Neil who had time to hit a shot which was blocked
and although O'Neil went forward to hit it again it was Jack Collison who
reacted quicker and unleashed an unstoppable effort from 25 yards out which
flew into the goal to make it 2-1.
It was a cracker of a goal from Collison whom I am led to believe was just
about to be subbed before he scored.
We did not seem to want to let up on Leicester who really looked ragged at
this point and another good move saw Vaz Te get into the area but Collison
couldn't find space for a shot and it was put out for a corner which Noble
took but the header from Tomkins went over.
We were frequently winning corners and most of these were aimed towards
James Tomkins who seemed to be getting to every one although with little
success when it came to scoring or creating a chance.
With just over fifteen minutes remaining Guy Demel was replaced by Julien
Faubert. I can only presume this is because of Demel being knackered because
other than that there was no reason to make such a substitution.
Leicester were forcing a few corners and seeing more of the ball in our half
but really they didn't do a lot with it and there wasn't much trouble for
With three minutes of normal time remaining we came so close to scoring a
third as Matthew Taylor again put in a superb low cross which was nearly
turned into his own net by the Leicester defender St Ledger.
Allardyce made another change with the goal scorer Collison coming off and
Henri Lansbury replacing him.
We were into the final minute and Julien Faubert nearly gifted Leicester a
chance with a quite ghastly header as he showed how poor a defender he
really is once again. Luckily the shot went well over the bar.
Four minutes of injury time were given by a referee we had hardly noticed
all evening. The Leicester fans began to depart as chants of 'Is there a
fire drill' rang out from the 2,237 travelling West Ham fans who will be
hoping that this is their last away trip of the season.
The only team who should have scored in the injury time was West Ham and it
was a very poor finish.
A ball into the feet of Kevin Nolan saw the captain cleverly turn his man
and he was in on goal, he waited for the keeper to come out and had Lansbury
to his right who could have tapped the ball in but he tried to score himself
and it was easily saved. We may remember this moment on Saturday against
Regardless of automatic promotion this was another showcase in how to get
results away from home. We were better than Leicester City all over the
pitch and Allardyce was tactically spot on in this one.
Apart from picking the ball out of the net Green had very little to do.
There was no great effort from Leicester than Green had to make a diving
save. Everything was straight at him and aside from a few punches and
catches he had an easy evening.
A solid if unspectacular display from Demel who appears to have made the
right back slot his own from now until the end of the season (whenever that
may be). Although Leicester's Lloyd caught him by surprise when he first
came on Demel got to grips with him quickly and marked him out of the game.
Scored the first goal and put in an excellent defensive display. Reid has
been one of the positives of the season given the standard of his
performances in his first season at the club and he continues to improve and
I thought he could have done better for their goal as he totally lost the
whereabouts of Beckford. If he had stayed tighter to him then I do not think
he would have scored. Apart from that he was very good otherwise and a
monster in the air.
His crossing was excellent and the assist for the equaliser was superb.
Maybe I am being harsh but I thought he was poor overall and struggled to
distribute the ball to a team mate when in his own half.
Ricardo Vaz Te
Stuck on the left wing Vaz Te did not have much of an impact on the game.
There were bits where he looked good but he was not exactly constantly
involved and came in and out of the game.
Struggled a bit initially but got to grips with the game and was working
hard before his substitution. He gets stuck in and is tight on the
opposition's midfield players.
Made a few fantastic passes which opened up Leicester giving Cole a chance
one on one and Nolan a great chance to score. Rarely gave the ball away,
controlled the tempo of the game and waited for players to run into space.
Noble takes his time and for me he ran the game.
Two poor finishes from the captain is my lasting memory of his performance.
He was hardworking in bursts but faded in and out of the game too much for
He was certainly getting forward in the first half and had a couple of
efforts. If he does give anything it is that he will get forward with the
attack and be in a position to get a shot off. His goal was superb and a
real great strike. Overall he was decent but nothing to get too excited
He was very good in the first twenty minutes and looked to have the better
of the Leicester defence. And then that was it. We hardly saw him again and
he had little to no impact on the second half at all.
Julien Faubert (on for Demel 77 mins)
His first action of the game was to try and put a cross into the area but it
was so poor it didn't beat the first man. The majority of times he cleared
the ball he put it out for a throw and nearly cost us a goal with a stupid
Danny Collins (on for Cole 81 mins)
Allardyce loves a bit of Danny Collins and you just knew he would get on at
some point. Did alright and was on to give us more at the back.
Henri Lansbury (on for Collison 88 mins)
Not on for long.
Subs Not Used: Baldock, Diop
Man Of The Match: Mark Noble
Leicester City: Schmeichel, Peltier, Konchesky, Bamba, Morgan, Marshall,
King, Drinkwater, Wellens, Beckford, Nugent
Subs: St.Ledger, Howard, Dyer, Waghorn, Vassell
To win thirteen games away from home in one season is a remarkable record
and whilst I am no fan of Sam Allardyce I to think that this is a great
achievement. For the travelling away fans it has been a good season because
watching your side win away from home is always brilliant.
But as our season comes to an end we know that the goal that we had at the
beginning has not been met and unless something quite special happens next
week we will have to go through the play offs to meet this goal.
It is perhaps foolish of me to expect relegated Coventry to go to one of the
best teams in the league and beat them on their own patch. I could see them
maybe snatching an unlikely draw but then we will need to win by a few
Next Game – Hull City (h) Saturday 28th April 12.30 Kick Off
Nothing other than a win will do and that is certainly stating the obvious.
It is not very likely that next week I will be talking about our promotion
but if something amazing does happen this could be one of the best days I
have had at West Ham.
Do not dismiss the hope you might be feeling.
If supporting West Ham has taught you anything then surely it is to expect
It has probably taught us many other things too....
"That was a well-deserved victory for us I feel,"
"We got what we wanted which was the three points; it was a really good
performance but just maybe we were a bit slack on the finishing in the
"The fans were great singing away in the corner for the whole game. I think
we've managed to send them home happy again which is fantastic."
"We came back from being 1-0 down, which I didn't think we deserved to be,
so that was great and we carried on controlling the game from there on in.
We created a lot of chances after we got our second goal but unfortunately
we didn't put any away."
"We have stayed in the race until the final day which is what we wanted to
do and we will have to do our job on Saturday and hope Coventry can help us
"Our chance of automatic promotion is better than before the game because we
have won. Who knows what will happen on Saturday, maybe Southampton will get
the jitters or Coventry will play without fear having already been
relegated. What we have to do is our job and win the game at home to Hull,
if we do that you never know."
Season 2011/12 Scorers and Red Cards
Kevin Nolan - 12 (12 League)
Carlton Cole - 11 (11 League)
Ricardo Vaz Te - 10(10 League)
Mark Noble - 8 (8 League)
Sam Baldock - 5 (5 League)
Jack Collison - 4 (4 League)
Own Goal - 4 (4 League)
Winston Reid - 3 (3 League)
James Tomkins - 3 (3 League)
Gary O'Neil - 2 (2 League)
Nicky Maynard - 2 (2 League)
Henri Lansbury - 2 (2 League)
John Carew - 2 (2 League)
Frederique Piquionne - 2 (2 League)
Papa Bouba Diop - 1 (1 League)
Joey O'Brien - 1 (1 League)
Matthew Taylor - 1 (1 League)
Julien Faubert - 1 (1 League)
Frank Nouble - 1 (1 League)
George McCartney - 1 (1 League)
Danny Collins - 1 (1 League)
Scott Parker - 1 (1 League)
Junior Stanislas - 1 (1 Cup)
Callum McNaughton - 1 (vs Aldershot home)
Frederique Piquionne - 1 (vs Portsmouth home)
Joey O'Brien - 1 (vs Reading away)
Jack Collison - 1 (vs Reading away)
Kevin Nolan - 1 (vs Millwall home)
Matthew Taylor - 1 (vs Southampton home)
Robert Green - 1 (vs Blackpool away)*
*rescinded by FA on appeal
Down to The Wire
By Iain Dale About 8 hours ago
West Ham Till I Die
Well, another goal or two would have been nice, but we got the three points
and have put Southampton under a bit of pressure on Saturday. Strange things
happen on the final day of the season and Southampton fans know that too. I
still think we only have a 25% chance of overtaking them, but you never
know. If my calculations are right, if we win and Southampton lose we are
up. If we draw, Southampton go up regardless. But where the real fun starts
is if Southampton draw and we win. Even then it depends on whether it's a
0-0, 1-1 or 2-2 draw and so on. If I am right we would need to win by three
more goals than Southampton score in their draw. So if it's 0-0 at St Mary's
we need to win 3-0. If it's 1-1 we need to win 4-0, and so on.
Can we do it? Yes we can. Will we do it? Well, probably not. But the main
thing is that if we don't do it, we are able to pick ourselves up very
quickly indeed and prepare properly for the play-offs.
Leicester 1-2 West Ham: Collison takes promotion battle to final day
Published 21:47 23/04/12 By James Nursey
Sam Allardyce hopes this gritty win will give Southampton "the jitters" as
the race for automatic promotion goes to the wire. West Ham kept alive their
hopes of overhauling second-placed Saints with a vital win at the King Power
Stadium. The visitors trailed to Jermaine Beckford's first half headed
opener but quickly levelled through Winston Reid. Jack Collison then capped
a fine display in midfield alongside Mark Noble with a superb winner in the
58th minute. Now West Ham must beat Hull at home in their final game on
Saturday and hope Saints - two points ahead and with a +3 goal difference
advantage - shoot themselves in the foot at home to already-relegated
Coventry. A draw for Southampton could even see Allardyce's men sneak
through on goal difference if they plunder enough against the Tigers. Boss
Allardyce, whose side topped the table earlier this term, said: "It was a
well deserved victory. "We got exactly what we wanted, which was the win.
Having to come back away from home at Leicester 1-0 down to win the game
with a terrific goal makes it a good night for us. "We have stayed in the
race now until the very end. We have to do our job on Saturday now and just
hope Coventry can do a little bit at Southampton. "It is one game left now
and who knows if Southampton get the jitters or Coventry play with no fear
because they have got relegated. "Southampton are under enormous pressure to
finish off their tremendous season with promotion. "We just have to win the
game against Hull and whatever happens after that, it has still been a very
good season from the players. "We have broken the club away record with our
13th away victory and only lost eight games in the entire season. "It is a
bit disappointing we don't have our destiny in our own hands but let's win
the game and see what happens."
The visitors started well, but it was the Foxes who took the lead in the
34th minute when Ben Marshall crossed for Beckford to head in his 16th of
the season. The hosts' lead only lasted five minutes though as Allardyce's
men quickly levelled through a well-worked goal down the left. Defender
Winston Reid finished off Matt Taylor's cross after clever play by skipper
Kevin Nolan. West Ham continued to press after the re-start as Noble thumped
a shot just wide from outside the area.
And midfielder Collison smashed in a scorcher after Gary O'Neil had a shot
blocked at the top of the box. Schmeichel got a hand to it, but the power on
the ball ensured it ended high in the net to the delight of 2,327 away fans.
West Ham storm through to Premier League finals
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - Apr 24 2012 07:15
Mail & Guardian Online
West Ham ensured their bid for automatic promotion to the English Premier
League will go to the final day of the season after coming from behind to
win 2-1 away to Leicester on Monday. The Hammers had to take all three
points at the Walkers Stadium otherwise Southampton would have been assured
of the second and final automatic promotion spot behind already crowned
Championship winners Reading. Leicester led when Ben Marshall's cross was
headed home by Jermaine Beckford in the 34th minute but five minutes later
Winston Reid equalised from Matty Taylor's centre. Jack Collison settled the
match in West Ham's favour with a 25-yard shot shortly before the hour mark.
West Ham are two points behind the Saints going into Saturday's final. The
London club need to beat Hull City on the final day and hope Southampton
lose to relegated Coventry. If the Saints draw, West Ham would need to win
by three or four goals -- depending on how many Southampton score -- to
clinch promotion. "We got exactly what we wanted tonight," said West Ham
manager Sam Allardyce after Monday's win over the Foxes. "It's a good night
for us and of course we've stayed in the race until the very end, which is
what we wanted and we have to do our job on Saturday and just hope that
Coventry can do a little bit at Southampton and then we'll wait and see,"
added Allardyce, who has premier league managerial experience with Bolton,
Newcastle and Blackburn. "It's one game left and who knows, if Southampton
get the jitters or the nerves, or Coventry play with no fear because they've
been relegated now, who knows, but we need to make sure we do our job and
win against Hull. "Whether we go straight up, which is a slim chance, or
whether we go in the play-offs, it's still been a very good season from the
players and everybody concerned," Allardyce insisted. Teams that finish
third, fourth, fifth and sixth in the regular Championship season will enter
play-offs, which culminate in a Wembley final for the prize of the third and
last promotion place to the Premier League. West Ham are looking to bounce
straight back to the top flight following their relegation at the end of the
2010/11 season while it is seven years since south coast side Southampton
last played in the Premier League. -- Sapa-AFP
Collison's cracker takes promotion fight to wire
Leicester City 1 West Ham United 2
GORDON TYNAN KING POWER STADIUM TUESDAY 24 APRIL 2012
Sam Allardyce last night cranked up the tension on Southampton as the race
for automatic promotion in the Championship approaches a nerve-shredding
Allardyce took a leaf out of old friend Sir Alex Ferguson's management
manual by insisting the pressure is all on Nigel Adkins' team after Jack
Collison secured West Ham the victory they desperately needed to keep their
automatic promotion hopes alive. Collison's 58th-minute winner enabled the
Hammers to move within two points of second-placed Southampton, and now
Allardyce's players must beat Hull on Saturday and hope that their promotion
rivals produce another unexpected defeat, against already relegated
Coventry. The odds may be stacked against them, and a place in the play-offs
looks the most likely scenario, but at least they have ensured it remains
interesting up until the final stages of a long slog. Allardyce said: "We've
got that little bit of light at the end of the tunnel. We've got to hope
Coventry do us a favour. Strange results happen all the time and we've got
to hope that Southampton slip up and Coventry enjoy the game with no
pressure and cause an upset. "The pressure on Southampton is enormous to
finish the outstanding season they've had. The nerve-endings could be
jangling and the pressure might get to the players."
It was not an emphatic victory but a 13th away win of the season got the job
done, and delayed hopes on the South Coast of Adkins ending Saints'
seven-year exile from the Premier League . The remit was simple for West Ham
here, with Southampton's surprise defeat at Middlesbrough presenting them
with some unexpected encouragement. This was a dead rubber for the hosts,
with their hopes of sneaking a play-off place extinguished after last
Tuesday's 0-0 draw with Burnley. But they responded after a hesitant start
to take the lead on 34 minutes. Ben Marshall bypassed Matt Taylor on the
right before sending over a cross that presented Jermaine Beckford with a
simple header. But the picture changed again five minutes later when the
visitors were level. Taylor's cross from the touchline seemed innocuous
enough but completely bamboozled the Leicester defence and Winston Reid
stabbed the ball in at the near post. And their superiority was rewarded
when Gary O'Neil's shot was blocked but Collison capitalised swiftly to
arrow the loose ball into the corner.
Leicester Schmeichel, Peltier, Morgan, Bamba, Konchesky, Marshall, Wellens
(Dyer, 22), Drinkwater, King (St Ledger , 46), Beckford, Nugent (Waghorn,
65). Substitutes not used Howard, Vassell.
West Ham Green, Demel ( Faubert, 76), Reid, Tomkins, Taylor, Collison
(Lansbury, 88), Noble, Nolan, O'Neil, Cole (Collins , 81), Vaz Te.
Substitutes not used Baldock, Diop.
Referee E Ilderton (Tyne & Wear).
West Ham still in the hunt for automatic promotion after win at Leicester
Dave Evans, West Ham correspondent, at the King Power Stadium
Monday, April 23, 2012
Championship: Leicester City 1 West Ham 2
Battling West Ham kept alive their slim hopes of automatic promotion as they
came from behind to grab all three points with a quality performance against
Leicester City. Nothing but victory for the Hammers would have prevented
Southampton from securing their place in the Premier League and when the
home side grabbed an unlikely first-half lead, it seemed that the game may
be up. But the Hammers hit back, equalised in the first half, before Jack
Collison's thumping second half strike earned West Ham their 13th away win
of the season and kept them in the automatic promotion hunt. West Ham
started the brighter and the recalled Collison had two shots in the first
six minutes as he first saw an effort blocked and then forced a save from
keeper Kasper Schmeichel. Carlton Cole was getting the better of his
physical battle with Wes Morgan, but after not quite getting enough on his
header from Mark Noble's free kick, he should have done better when Noble
put him in the clear. The striker sprinted forward, but then dwelt on the
ball as Morgan got back to make the vital tackle. The arrival of Lloyd Dyer
for the injured Richie Wellens was the catalyst for Leicester to come to
life and after the winger got passed Guy Demel to pick out Jermaine
Beckford, only for the striker to head wide. However, with Leicester
beginning to get a foothold in the game, they grabbed the lead on 34
minutes. Ben Marshall jinked past Matt Taylor down the right wing and when
his cross went over the head of James Tomkins, Beckford was there to head
home with relish. The goal seemed to galvanise the Hammers though and they
took just five minutes to restore parity.
The excellent Noble slipped the ball to Taylor and he had time to deliver a
low cross which centre half Winston Reid was able to slot in at the near
post. West Ham were in control and looked to force their way into the lead
before the break. Ricardo Vaz Te saw his thunderbolt blocked by Morgan as it
seemed destined for the net, while Taylor's corner was headed wide by
Tomkins as the Hammers looked for that vital winning goal. They started the
second half in dominant form, pinning Leicester back in their own half as
first Noble and then Nolan had chances that flew over the bar. But on 58
minutes came the vital goal. Gary O'Neil's shot was blocked by a defender,
but it fell invitingly for Collison who drilled a low shot into the net,
despite Schmeichel getting a hand to the shot. The Hammers proceeded to take
complete control, passing the ball around and giving Green the luxury of a
fairly incident free 45 minutes. They should have added to their tally. Vaz
Te set up Collison for a shot that was blocked, Taylor's corner was almost
turned in by Cole and then Tomkins, while defender Sean St Ledger almost put
Taylor's low cross into his own net. Marshall's long ranger was the closest
Leicester came until injury time when the Hammers almost threw away their
lead. First Nolan somehow managed to shoot straight at the keeper with the
goal at his mercy, and then as Leicester piled everyone forward for a free
kick, Morgan's close range header fortunately was straight at Green.
So West Ham are still in the race, but they are still hoping for a miracle.
They need to beat Hull City and hope that Southampton can't beat relegated
But at least they are in with a chance.
West Ham: Green, Demel (Faubert 77), Taylor, Tomkins, Reid, Collison
(Lansbury 88), Nolan, Noble, O'Neil, Vaz Te, Cole (Collins 82).
Unused subs: Baldock, Diop.