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Match Report
West Ham Utd vs Tottenham
 0 - 2 
Date: 
08/12/2008
Venue: 
Boleyn Ground
Attendance: 
34,277
Referee: 
Chris Foy
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West Ham United 0-2 Tottenham Hotspur

West Ham United missed out on their chance to climb to ninth in the Barclays Premier League table as Tottenham Hotspur secured a 2-0 win at the Boleyn Ground.

Ledley King's 68th minute header and Jamie O'Hara's late long-range effort were the difference between the two sides on an unseasonably warm night in east London. The England defender scored his first goal in three years, rising highest to nod powerfully past Robert Green, before midfielder O'Hara made the game safe in the last minute.

Gianfranco Zola had named an unchanged team from the goalless draw at Liverpool, while the Italian also selected the same seven substitutes - including the fit-again Mark Noble and Spanish striker Diego Tristan.

The visitors had slightly edged the better of the chances in the first half. After just 61 seconds, fine build-up play involving Roman Pavlyuchenko, Aaron Lennon and David Bentley opened up a clear shooting chance for Luka Modric, but the diminutive Croatian could only roll a weak shot straight into Green's arms.

Then, three minutes before half-time, Lennon's low cross found Pavlyuchenko, but the Russian striker could only divert his shot on to the post at full-stretch. Bentley also called Green into action on 38 minutes, but the England goalkeeper was equal to his well-struck effort, diving to his left to push the ball behind for a corner.

The north Londoners continued to hold the upper hand after the break and Green had already done well to keep out Didier Zokora's low shot when he was finally beaten 22 minutes from time. Lennon crossed from the right touchline and the unlikely figure of King rose to send a bouncing header past the United goalkeeper, ending the 28-year-old's run without conceding a goal at 341 minutes and the defender's own 64-match wait to get his name on the scoresheet.

Zola, who had earlier seen a Jermaine Jenas own-goal chalked off for an infringement by Lucas Neill, sent on Noble and David Di Michele to immediate effect. First, referee Foy turned down the Hammers' loud penalty appeals, awarding only a corner after Benoit Assou-Ekotto had handled Bellamy's 75th minute cross.

Then, less than 60 seconds later, Di Michele saw his powerful goalbound shot blocked by Jonathan Woodgate. Tristan was sent on for his United debut with seven minutes remaining as Zola added greater firepower in the search for a late equaliser.

The gamble should have had the desired effect, only for Heurelho Gomes to produce two stupendous saves to deny first Neill and then Di Michele an 89th minute leveller.

Tottenham replacement Jamie O'Hara then rubbed salt in the Hammers' wounds by, almost immediately, firing a rising 25-yard shot into Green's top-right hand corner.

Matthew Upson
 Match Stats
 
  West Ham Tottenham
Goals : 0 2
Possession : 55% 45%
Shots On Target : 5 12
Shots Off Target : 7 5
Corners : 7 5
Fouls : 13 16
Most Fouls : Neill (4) Jenas (3)
Yellow Cards : 2 0
Red Cards : 0 0
 
Scorers :
King 68
O'Hara 90
 
 Team Line Ups :
 
Robert Green   
Lucas Neill   
James Collins   
Matthew Upson   
Herita Ilunga   
Valon Behrami   
Hayden Mullins 73
Scott Parker 83
Julien Faubert 58
Carlton Cole   
Craig Bellamy   
 
Substitutes :
 
Jack Collison   
Jan Lastuvka   
Luis Boa Morte   
Mark Noble 58
Diego Tristan 83
Calum Davenport   
David Di Michele 73
 
 
   Heurelho Gomes
   Vedran Corluka
   Jonathan Woodgate
   Ledley King
   Benoit Assou-Ekotto
   Aaron Lennon
   Didier Zokora
   Jermaine Jenas
81 David Bentley
   Luka Modric
54 Roman Pavlyuchenko
 
 
 
   Kevin-Prince Boateng
   Sanchez Cesar
   Gareth Bale
   Tom Huddlestone
81 Jamie O'Hara
   Michael Dawson
54 Darren Bent
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