Stoke City v West Ham United
Barclays Premier League
Saturday 18 September 2010
Referee: Lee Mason
Final score - Stoke City 1-1 West Ham United
93 mins - Upson heads clear and Cole wins the loose ball before prodding up towards halfway. As Piquionne and Faye collide, the final whistle is blown. West Ham are off and running! It might not be a win, but it's a point! The away fans welcome the players as they make for the tunnel. Piquionne and Da Costa throw their shirts into the crowd, while the remaining players give the supporters a clap and a thumbs-up. Let's hope the Hammers can build on this by securing a Carling Cup third-round victory at Sunderland on Tuesday evening. Keep a close eye on whufc.com and WHUTV for exclusive post-match reaction and interviews.
92 mins - West Ham are going to make another change. Boa Morte is coming on. Delap is going to have another chance to throw the ball goalwards, but not before Obinna has been replaced by the Portugal international.
91 mins - We go into the first of three added minutes as Parker is challenged and the ball falls to Etherington. The winger tries to chip Green with the outside of his left foot, forcing the goalkeeper to tip over. Whelan's corner finds the head of Shawcross - and that of Cole - before going behind. Goal kick, according to Mr Mason.
90 mins - Into the final minute of the 90 and Obinna wins a throw. It's all getting a bit nervy at both ends. Gabbidon concedes another throw near the West Ham area...
89 mins - After some running repairs, the Stoke captain is back on the field.
87 mins - Jacobsen is forced to clear for another throw by Fuller. Delap again... Green claims! The goalkeeper smashes the ball forward quickly and it thumps Shawcross square on the back of the head. Gudjohnsen has the ball, but is crowded out before West Ham clear. Referee Mason spots the prone Shawcross and blows for the physio to come on.
85 mins - Obinna crosses, Upson heads the ball down and Parker runs on to it 20 yards out. A hush descends over the stadium, but the midfielder's clean strike flies a couple of yards wide of the target.
84 mins - West Ham have a chance to threaten the Stoke goal here as Cole is brought down as he challenges for a high ball with Faye. Free-kick, about 30 yards out. Noble and Obinna both want it. The Nigerian wins the argument...
83 mins - Stoke make another change as Glenn Whelan replaces the injured Pennant. Another booking soon follows as Collins brings down Parker.
82 mins - Crikey! Delap throws the ball in and Fuller wins the header. It bounces down and Green watches it cannon off the underside of the crossbar before rebounding to safety.
82 mins - Stoke have regained the upper hand here. Fuller gets down the right and wins a throw off Gabbidon. Pennant appears to have hurt his hamstring.
81 mins - Etherington crosses and Cole heads clear. When the ball is launched back in, at least one Stoke player is offside.
80 mins - Obinna gives a free-kick away inside the Stoke half. Collins smashes the ball upfield and Upson can only glance the ball behind for another corner.
78 mins - It's getting nearer to 'squeaky-bum time', as they say in some parts. I'm not sure where, though. The Hammers are showing signs of life as an attacking force. Can they nick a late winner, just as Diego Tristan did two seasons ago. Parker tries to do just that, taking the ball from Obinna before shooting wide. The referee had penalised Parker for handball though.
76 mins - The corner is deep and West Ham crowd out Delap on the edge of the box. Parker finds Obinna, who gets to within 25 yards and unleashes a horrible shot that slices miles wide. The Nigerian immediately raises his arm to apologise to Parker and Piquionne.
75 mins - West Ham concede a needless throw level with their own penalty area. Delap hurls the ball in and Piquionne is forced to head behind for a corner.
74 mins - The new man gets his first touch, but is crowded out by Kovac. Noble works the ball wide left to Obinna, who crosses. Piquionne gets his head to the ball, but cannot direct it goalwards.
73 mins - Gudjohnsen is still standing on the touchline... FInally, as West Ham win a throw, he comes on for Jones. The home crowd give both men a standing ovation.
71 mins - Before Gudjohnsen can come on to perform in front of his adoring fans, Obinna tests Sorensen with a low shot from 20 yards following superb play from Piquionne and Cole. Noble receives the ball from a short corner and finds Da Costa at the back post. He heads the ball down, but the Dane is again there to turn the ball aside. Stoke clear to Etherington, who breaks 50 yards into the West Ham box before crossing low but too close to Green. Today's crowd is 27,028.
70 mins - Stoke are going to introduce Eidur Gudjohnsen in a short while. The home fans are very excited about the prospect of seeing the Iceland international in action.
68 mins - Upson clears the ball into touch and Delap gets his first chance in a while to hurl the ball into box. Green punches clear to Pennant, who is given far too much time and space. He cuts inside Parker and chips a cross to Jones, who heads against the crossbar. He was offside, though.
66 mins - Pulis makes his first change, taking off Walters for fans' favourite Ricardo Fuller.
65 mins - West Ham are trying to take the sting out of the game at present, playing the ball around patiently at the back. It seems to be working to an extent, as Stoke are backing off and the home crowd are getting a bit frustrated.
62 mins - Parker is doing very well, making a succession of interceptions as Stoke come forward. Next up, the Hammer of the Year beats Pennant with a neat bit of skill.
60 mins - Noble finds Obinna down the left and he wins a throw deep in Stoke territory. Gabbidon uses Delap's towel to clean the ball before hurling it in. Noble looks to have got in behind, but is flagged for a foul on Pennant.
59 mins - Jones outstrips Upson before cutting inside and powering a shot against the inside of the far post. The rebound drops to Pennant, whose follow-up shot is blocked by Parker. Replays show that was an absolutely outstanding save from Green. Well done that man!
58 mins - Stoke have really got their tails up here, as you might expect. The home crowd are willing them on. West Ham need to get some sort of control and keep the ball for a sustained period.
55 mins - West Ham do well to repel Pennant again and Kovac sweeps the ball wide left to Piquionne. He threads a pass into Cole's feet, but the No9 loses control and the home side can clear.
54 mins - Kovac does well twice to win challenges near the edge of the West Ham box. Noble wins a throw. Again the Stoke fans aren't happy, but they've no reason for complaint.
53 mins - Noble does well to brush Pennant off the ball. Stoke fans want a foul, but was clearly a fair challenge.
52 mins - Behrami tries to resume, but his knee is not right and he comes straight off again. Kovac is being readied to take his place. Behrami's 50th league start for the club ends in negative circumstances. Kovac is on.
50 mins - Behrami leaves the pitch clutching his right knee. He looks like he'll be OK to come back on, though. Pennant takes the corner, but it hits no-one and goes straight behind for a goal kick.
49 mins - Behrami tries a trick and goes down in agony. Stoke play on and Jones rolls the ball into the path of Etherington, whose shot hits the sliding Jacobsen and flies behind for a corner.
48 mins - GOAL! Well that didn't take long. Pennant clips a cross over Parker and Green, Jones gets above Da Costa and heads in from a yard.
47 mins - Gabbidon concedes a throw, but Parker is there to head clear. Behrami tries to bring the ball clear but is felled by the sliding Huth. No yellow card, though.
46 mins - West Ham get us back under way here in the Midlands. No changes from either side at the break.
Half-time score - Stoke City 0-1 West Ham United
47 mins - Goodness knows what is going on here. Huth comes back on and the Hammers boot the drop-ball upfield. Da Costa wins one last header before referee Mason blows for half-time. Time for a deep breath!
46 mins - Da Costa launches the free-kick into the area and Sorensen claims. He kicks upfield and Stoke win their own free-kick about 15 yards outside the penalty area. Another set piece for the Hammers to defend. Etherington looks favourite to take it. He clips the ball in and it drops near to Huth. Da Costa clears acrobatically and Huth goes down as if he's been injured. The referee calls for the physio, but the German is back on his feet before he can get to him. Hmm...
45 mins - Into the final minute of the half and Parker is felled by a nasty-looking challenge from Whitehead. Another yellow card... We're going to have two added minutes, at least. Parker has some treatment first.
43 mins - Upson is penalised for a foul on Jones and Stoke have a free-kick, which Green claims confidently. Stoke attack again and when Pennant crosses, Collins looks unmarked. The ball just doesn't drop quick enough and Behrami gets the ball clear. Phew!
42 mins - Lovely football from West Ham. Jacobsen's decoy run gives Piquionne the space to find Noble, who turns away and tries to play in Obinna. The ball is just too strong for the Nigerian and rolls behind for a goal kick.
39 mins - Nice football from West Ham ends with Cole knocking the ball down for Noble, whose shot flies into the hands of Sorensen. Seconds later, the No9 is booked for a foul on Etherington. No arguments from Cole, who caught his old team-mate high and a bit late.
37 mins - Gabbidon makes a mistake, passing the ball across the back four for no reason. Da Costa mis-controls and the ball goes out for a throw. Delap hurls it in and Jones heads over from six yards. Big let-off.
35 mins - It's all going on here. Cole goes down off the ball under what looks like a flailing arm from Shawcross. Nothing is given.
34 mins - Stoke want a penalty as Walters goes down in the box. The referee waves his arms emphatically. West Ham break immediately and Piquionne comes within inches of doubling West Ham's lead, cutting inside Whitehead and smashing a shot against the crossbar from 25 yards. Obinna picks up the loose ball, but his cross is high and wide of the target.
32 mins - GOAL! Scotty Parker!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Obinna's free-kick is a very good one and flies into the six-yard box. Cole and Upson both scrap to keep the ball alive and it falls to the No8, who stabs home with his left foot from no more than a yard.
31 mins - Kovac, Faubert and Tomkins are out stretching on the touchline. Behrami turns Collins and is brought down near the byline. Another set piece chance for the Hammers. This time, Obinna will take it left-footed.
28 mins - Good skill by Piquionne, who knocks the ball past Huth before being pulled back by the German. A chance for Obinna to deliver a telling set piece. Noble takes, and he doesn't beat the first man.
27 mins - Obinna has come over to the right side up front alongside Cole, with Piquionne dropping out to the left flank. To my right, Radoslav Kovac disappears down the tunnel for one reason or another.
24 mins - Delap shoves Behrami, who falls to the floor. Yellow card for the throw-in king. West Ham launch the resulting free-kick long and it drops to Obinna. His shot, however, goes sideways along the face of the penalty area and hits Faye before Stoke clear.
23 mins - A shot on goal from Cole. Piquionne, Gabbidon and Obinna play some nice posssession football before Cole receives the ball with his back to goal. He holds off Shawcross and shoots low, but it's too close to Sorensen.
22 mins - Pennant's free-kick hits the wall and falls to Jones about 12 yards out. Thankfully, he can only slice his effort way wide of the target.
21 mins - Behrami commits two fouls in the space of ten seconds and is booked by referee Mason. Another chance for Pennant to stick the ball into the danger area. The Stoke fans remind Green of his recent error...
19 mins - Crikey. Pennant takes and the ball bounces in front of Green. He fumbles and allows the ball to get to Huth, who smashes his shot against the outside of the post from an acute angle.
17 mins - Obinna appears to be fouled by Whitehead, but the referee waves play on. Cole can't control and Stoke counter through Walters, who is brought down by Behrami. The striker needs treatment before Stoke can take a free-kick about 30 yards from Green's goal. Pennant will take it.
14 mins - Green hacks the ball upfield and Cole chases as it bounces over the head of Shawcross. As Sorensen tries to gather, the centre-back slides in and concedes a corner. Noble takes and, although Stoke initially clear, the ball is launched back into the area and drops to Obinna. The Nigerian's volley appears to hit a hand before looping through to Sorensen. It was Shawcross who handled and his arms were definitely 'up', as they say. Hmmm....
11 mins - Delap's throw flicks off the head of Piquionne and behind for a corner. There is a slight delay as the referee speaks to a couple of players. Pennant crosses and Cole heads clear at the near post for another throw. You know what's coming next... Delap gets no air on his effort this time and Cole heads clear to Obinna, who buys West Ham some time before Faye slides in on Piquionne and the Hammers can try to launch an attack.
10 mins - Gabbidon gets a toe in and wins the ball from Pennant. It breaks to Cole, who turns and runs at the Stoke defence before dragging his shot wide from 25 yards. The Potters go on the attack and Pennant wins a corner off Gabbidon. Etherington crosses and Piquionne heads clear at the near post. Cole is forced to concede another throw. Delap...
8 mins - Stoke nearly get in behind as Behrami mis-controls, but Gabbidon is there to clear Etherington's cross before it can get to Jones.
7 mins - Jones beats Da Costa in the air and feeds Pennant, whose attempted cross is blocked by Gabbidon. First chance for Delap to hurl the ball into the area... Faye wins the header, but it rolls to safety and Jacobsen clears. West Ham win a throw and Cole finds Behrami, whose cross forces Pennant to head behind for a corner. Noble crosses and the ball flicks off a Stoke head.
5 mins - To be fair, this is one of the quietest openings to a game that I've seen in many a while. Next to nothing has happened in either penalty area.
3 mins - Parker is caught in possession and Jones brings the ball forward with purpose. Noble shows good tenacity to get back in and win the ball with a sliding challenge.
2 mins - Obinna makes some space down the left and crosses towards Cole, forcing Sahwcross to hack the ball clear for a throw. Noble can't control and now Stoke have a chance to clear.
1 min - Stoke show first down the right, but Pennant's attempted pass to Walters is too strong and rolls behind for a goal kick. I don't know what Green has done to upset the Stoke fans, but they're giving him a proper hard time!
12.45pm - Stoke will kick-off...
12.43pm - West Ham have brought about 1,100 fans to the Potteries this afternoon and they are welcoming the announcement of each Hammers player with a cheer as their name is read out. The two teams are swapping ends, meaning West Ham will attack the South Stand end of the stadium in the first half. Stoke's fans give Robert Green a warm welcome as he arrives at the Boothen End.
12.40pm - West Ham's substitutes appear from the tunnel - it's one of those stretchy ones here at Stoke - and take their places on the bench. Kick-off is only a few moments away... Over the stand to my right, I can see a few stragglers hurrying along the road to the stadium. They're going to have to get a move on if they're going to see all the action. Here come the two teams...
12.37pm - Stoke have possibly the loudest stadium PA system on the planet. They are currently playing highlights of their 2-1 win over Aston Villa on Monday night, and it's as if the match was being replayed in front of our eyes.
12.30pm - It has clouded over a bit since we arrived in the Potteries a couple of hours ago. Both teams are heading gor the tunnel after completing their pre-match warm-ups. West Ham are wearing white shirts, blue shorts and blue socks this afternoon. The stadium is slowly filling up ahead of today's lunch-time kick-off. In the middle of the pitch, a huge banner displaying the wording 'The 12th man. Loud and proud' is being paraded. Let's hope the Hammers can silence the Britannia din. The Hammers players give the travelling fans a clap as they head to the away dressing room.
Good afternoon and welcome to a bright and sunny Britannia Stadium for today's Barclays Premier League fixture between Stoke City and West Ham United.
With manager Avram Grant absent as he honour's the Jewish holy day of Yom Kippur, former Grimsby Town manager and Portsmouth coach Paul Groves, ex-Stoke winger Kevin Keen and former Yugoslavia international Zeljko Petrovic will take charge of the Hammers this afternoon.
Team news-wise, Tal Ben Haim is also absent for Yom Kippur, while Thomas Hitzlsperger is sidelined with a thigh injury. Long-term absentees Jack Collison, Zavon Hines, Peter Kurucz and Anthony Edgar are still sidelined.
At the back, Danny Gabbidon replaces Herita Ilunga at left-back, while further forward Frederic Piquionne is in for Luis Boa Morte. Piquionne will be looking to continue his rich vein of scoring form against the Potters, having netted three times in three appearances against Tony Pulis' side for Portsmouth last season.
The match will also bring back fond memories for Stoke winger Matthew Etherington, who spent five and a half years in east London between 2003 and 2009. The Potters reigning Player of the Year made 195 appearances in claret and blue, scoring 18 goals.
Stoke City: Sorensen, Huth, Shawcross, Faye, Collins, Delap, Whitehead, Pennant (Whelan 83), Etherington, Walters (Fuller 66), Jones (Gudjohnsen 73)
Subs: Begovic, Higginbotham, Wilson, Wilkinson
West Ham United: Green, Jacobsen, Da Costa, Upson, Gabbidon, Behrami (Kovac 52), Parker, Noble, Obinna (Boa Morte 90), Piquionne, Cole
Subs: Stech, Faubert, Tomkins, Barrera, McCarthy