WEST BROMWICH ALBION v WEST HAM UNITED
BARCLAYS PREMIER LEAGUE
SUNDAY 16 DECEMBER 2012
REFEREE: PHIL DOWD
FULL AUDIO AND TEXT COMMENTARY - WEST HAM TV
iPHONE APP I TWITTER I FACEBOOK I PODCAST
Final score - West Bromwich Albion 0-0 West Ham United
95 mins - That's your lot. The away fans applaud and sing Carlton Cole's name as the Hammers walk over and thank the travelling Hammers for their support. West Ham rode their luck a little but they deserved a point for their heroic defending. Reid and Collins, in particular, were outstanding. Cole also worked his absolute socks off up front. We'll have reaction on West Ham TV soon.
94 mins - Into the final minute and Reid hacks the ball out for a throw before making another decent intervention. Nolan then wins a free-kick and West Ham have almost gained a valuable point and a heroic clean sheet.
92 mins - Cole beats the offside trap but his cross takes a slight deflection and is cleared by Olsson on the volley.
91 mins - We're into the first of four added minutes. Maiga mis-controls and then wins a free-kick. That was a bit fortunate. Jaaskelainen launches the ball forward and Cole challenges Olsson. The ball drops and Cole swings his left foot at it. Myhill makes the save diving low to his left and holds on.
90 mins - There are 24,186 fans here today and the majority of them are not happy as Collins goes to ground and wins a free-kick. It's only temporary respite, though. West Brom are soon back on the offensive.
89 mins - The ball is rolled to Rosenberg, whose low shot hits the bottom of the wall. Maiga thumps the loose ball upfield and out for a throw inside the Baggies half. Big Sam urges his players forward.
88 mins - O'Neil needlessly hacks at a clearance and then fouls Odemwingie on the edge of the box. This one is very dangerous. It's just left of the D and about a yard outside the box.
86 mins - The yellow card is out again. Tomkins is booked for a blatant block on Odemwingie. Brunt curls the free-kick in and Jaaskelainen does just enough.
85 mins - Cole is back in the game.
83 mins - Steve Clarke replaces Long with Sweden international Markus Rosenberg. Before play can re-start, the referee books Nolan and Mulumbu for some handbags.
82 mins - Wow! Brunt curls it in and the ball hits at least four players before O'Brien clears for a throw. Cole is down. Replays suggest the ball hit him in the chops. He has a cut lip. The physio is on.
81 mins - James Tomkins is going to be on shortly, but whereabouts will he be employed? Meanwhile, Lukaku forces a corner. Before it can be taken, Demel is replaced by Tomkins. The Ivorian is not exactly in a rush to get off the pitch!
78 mins - Odemwingie collects a pass from Lukaku but his cross is cleared by Collins. West Ham launch a ball forward and Cole challenges a dawdling McAuley. The centre-back slips over but the assistant flags for a foul. The assistant is about 40 yards from the play. Cole sees his shot saved low down by Myhill, but of course it would not have counted. Replays show the contact was minimal.
76 mins - Matt Jarvis is replaced by Maiga. Jarvis receives a rousing send-off from the home fans, which might have something to do with the fact he used to play for Wolverhampton Wanderers.
75 mins - West Brom make a change, with Lukaku replacing Gera.
74 mins - Another desperate moment as a block goes in on the edge of the box before Taylor heads the follow-up cross behind for another corner. Brunt curls it in and Morrison's header thuds against the angle of post and crossbar before being hacked away. O'Neil is then fouled after winning the ball back and Jones is booked for the challenge.
73 mins - Noble is penalised a bit harshly for handball and then tries Mr Dowd's patience by holding on to the ball. No booking, though.
71 mins - West Ham are holding on a bit at present. They need to have a spell of possession inside the Baggies half. At present, they are having to put in some last-ditch tackles and blocks to keep their hosts at bay.
69 mins - Pinball inside the West Ham box. Gera and Mulumbu see shots blocked before Morrison screws his effort into the ground and it hits a team-mate on the chest. The ball bounces up again and Morrison's overhead kick finally bounces harmlessly wide. That was a hold your breath moment for about 20 seconds!
67 mins - West Ham build through Cole before Taylor nips in and wins the ball in front of the back four and is fouled. Noble lifts it to the far post and O'Brien meets it on the volley with his left foot. The ball just clears the crossbar. So close for the Irishman.
66 mins - West Ham are creaking a bit. Odemwingie runs at Demel again and drives the cross in low. Reid does superbly to clear behind under pressure from Long. Gera wins the header from the corner, but it's a bit high for the Hungarian and the ball flies over the top.
64 mins - The Baggies have another corner as a clearing header breaks to Odemwingie. His cross is blocked behind by O'Neil. Cole does brilliantly again to head the corner away at the near post. Jarvis finds O'Neil, but the return pass is just too strong and West Brom work the ball back to Myhill.
61 mins - West Brom come again and Gera lets one go from 25 yards. It's too hot for Jaaskelainen to handle and the ball bounces out towards the penalty spot. Collins reacts quicker than Long and safely heads back to the goalkeeper, who parries the ball down under his own crossbar before holding on.
60 mins - Superb. Demel wins the ball back and when O'Neil punts it upfield, Cole does brilliantly to win a free-kick from Olsson. Noble lifts the free-kick to the far post, where Reid is outjumped.
59 mins - Jarvis and Taylor work and opening and the former crosses. Olsson heads out to the edge and Noble cannot control his shot from the bouncing ball on his left foot. West Ham keep up the pressure on the far side and the cross comes in and is headed behind for a corner by the Swede. Noble crosses and Reid heads wide. The Kiwi was having his shirt held, but those never seem to be given as penalties, do they?
57 mins - It literally is end-to-end. This time West Ham hold their line on the edge of their own penalty area before Odemwingie lets fly from 25 yards, but it's high and wide. Moments later, West Ham counter and Noble feeds Taylor, but his first-time shot dribbles wide.
56 mins - Cole gets on the end of Jarvis's first-time cross and gets up quickly when he and Olsson fall to the turf. He should just lay the ball off for Taylor but instead tries to pick out Nolan and the chance is lost.
54 mins - This game could go either way. Jarvis gets free and his cross is chested down by Cole for Nolan. The captain is off-balance and can only slice his shot side of the near post on the turn.
53 mins - Odemwingie gets forward well again but his cross is blocked by Collins, who then shanks his clearance and it goes nowhere. The ball is laid back to Brunt, but his side-footer from 25 yards is off-target.
50 mins - Myhill is forced into a hurried backpass and concedes a throw. Demel wins another throw before the cross comes in and is only cleared to the edge of the box. Jarvis gets the ball to O'Neil, whose first-time curler just eludes the far top corner. So close from the midfielder and heads in hands all-round.
49 mins - Cole is forced to concede another corner with his head. Brunt curls it over again and the ball again drops to Morrison, but this time he slices his shot wide of the right-hand post. Goal kick and a huge sigh of relief from everyone in claret and blue.
47 mins - Brunt runs at Demel and drives in his cross low. Reid gets there first and then stabs the ball behind for a corner. The delivery is dangerous and eludes Jaaskelainen, but is safely headed behind. Brunt's second delivery is volleyed back in by Gera and volleyed goalwards by Morrison. The ball flicks the crossbar but Mr Dowd gives a corner.
46 mins - The Hammers kick-off, but Collins long ball forward is too high for Taylor, who can only flick his header out for a throw. Taylor and Jarvis have swapped wings.
No changes at half-time, as far as I can see. Both teams are back out on the pitch.
Half-time score - West Bromwich Albion 0-0 West Ham United
47 mins - A handball gives West Ham a free-kick inside the home half. Noble lifts it in right-footed but it's too close to Myhill. The ball is cleared and the half-time whistle blows. The home fans jeer Mr Dowd. Anyway, we'll be back in 15 minutes for the second half.
45 mins - Morrison runs the ball out for a goal kick and the home fans don't like it. They want a corner. It wasn't a corner. We're going to have one added minute. O'Brien nearly makes it a memorable one when he threads a ball around Olsson for Cole. It is just too strong and Myhill can collect.
44 mins - Half-time is approaching and it goes without saying that both managers will want to keep things tight for the next couple of minutes. I'd say a share of the spoils is about right on the balance of play, but the home side have tested the goalkeeper more often.
41 mins - Taylor's delivery is poor and easily cleared. O'Neil controls well under pressure, then lofts the ball straight out for a goal kick.
40 mins - This game is on a real knife-edge. Both teams will believe they can go on and win it. For now, West Ham are probably just shading matters. Demel wins a free-kick from Popov wide on the right and Taylor can whip this in.
36 mins - Oooh! Unlucky for Cole, who wins the ball back from Mulumbu and lets fly from 25 yards. He smashes the ball and Myhill can only parry straight out into the heart of the penalty area. Nolan is there, but the ball goes just behind him and West Brom escape. The counter ends with Long running into the box, but Collins and O'Neil are there and the ball rolls harmlessly back into the hands of Jaaskelainen.
35 mins - Good football again involving O'Brien, Nolan, Noble and O'Brien ends with Nolan chesting the ball down and Jarvis trying to get the cross in. Unfortunately it is deflected high into the air and Myhill is able to collect on the bounce.
34 mins - Gera finds Long, who spins Reid and shoots instantly. Again, he drags his shot wide of the near post with his left foot. Jaaskelainen slides on his knees as he watches the ball roll wide.
32 mins - Good football down the right and the Demel cross is headed behind for a corner by Jones. Noble swings it deep and Collins nods back into the six-yard box. Reid meets the ball on the volley but somehow clears the crossbar. He was stretching a bit. I am not 100 per cent sure, but Mr Dowd might have given a foul. No matter, Reid will have wanted to hit the target from there.
30 mins - O'Brien is booked for a late challenge on Gera near the left touchline. That's a bit of a needless one as the challenge was made inside the Baggies half. West Brom break from the free-kick and Brunt has a pop from 25 yards. Again, it's straight at Jaaskelainen. You can hear the thud of the ball hitting his chest up here in the Press Box. Good handling by the Finn.
29 mins - The see-saw nature of the game continues as a diagonal ball to the far post from O'Neil is headed back across the face of goal by Taylor. Cole and Jarvis are both in there, but again Myhill is able to dive right and pounce on the ball.
28 mins - Long is a real livewire. I must confess I am a fan of the Baggies striker. He cuts inside O'Neil but drags his shot a yard or two wide of the left-hand post with his left foot.
26 mins - It's end-to-end stuff and this time West Brom attack. The ball is worked to James Morrison, but the Scotland midfielder drags his shot well wide from distance. No matter, he still gets a song from the home fans.
25 mins - Cole calls for the ball over the top from O'Brien. The left-back spots him but puts just a little bit too much juice on the pass and it clears the striker and lands in the arms of Myhill.
23 mins - Gary O'Neil needs a change of boots now! The TV cameras here show David Moyes and Chris Hughton in the stands. West Ham entertain Everton next weekend and Norwich City on New Year's Day. Tickets for both games are available here.
21 mins - Good football by West Ham. They knock the ball around confidently and show some sharp movement off the ball before Demel swings over the cross from the right. It is headed clear but Nolan wins it back. Demel is found again wide on the right and he swings the cross in again, but Olsson heads out and Mulumbu can clear. A diagonal ball seeking out Long is too strong and Jaaskelainen collects. As he does, he gets a nudge from the hard-working Irishman. Smiles all-round and the game goes on.
19 mins - It's a decent game so far. Just for a change, Nolan needs a switch of boots. I have no idea why, but the skipper seems to need a new pair in every game! Meanwhile, Mr Dowd lets the game flow as Noble slides in with a determined challenge. Good shout ref, as he clearly won the ball.
17 mins - Half a chance. Cole wins the flick-on from Noble's lofted ball forward and Taylor gets in behind Popov. Taylor crosses low right-footed for Jarvis, but it's too far in front of the No7 and Myhill pounces on the ball low to his right.
15 mins - West Ham are definitely playing on the break today. The hosts are controlling possession and territory. A neat pass from Morrison finds Odemwingie in space. He turns and shoots from 25 yards, but Jaaskelainen gets his body behind the ball and makes the catch low down.
12 mins - Nolan has a nibble at Morrison, who falls to the ground about 35 yards out. Brunt lines up the free-kick but he thunders his shot into the wall. A couple more crosses come in but Collins and then O'Neil head clear. Finally, Long challenges for a low cross inside the box with Collins, but the ball hits the Irishman last before it flies well wide and out for a goal kick.
11 mins - Reid is back on without any damage done.
10 mins - Taylor lifts the ball in and Reid challenges at the far post. He lands awkwardly and needs the physio on. It's his left ankle. Suffice to say, West Ham could do without another injury. He looks to be OK, however, but will have to wait to re-enter the pitch.
9 mins - Jarvis' poor backpass almost lets in Odemwingie but Nolan gets a foot in and Jarvis atones by winning a header bravely. O'Neil breaks away and finds Demel. Noble is then fouled about 40 yards from the home goal.
7 mins - West Ham have settled down a bit after West Brom's fast start. A bit of possession inside their own half ends with a long ball for Jarvis skipping off the turf and away for a goal kick. No real pattern to the game as yet.
5 mins - That's better. Noble collects a clearance and runs past Mulumbu before feeding Cole on the left touchline. He runs at Olsson before swinging a cross to the far post. Taylor is on his own alongside Popov but he gets up well and heads the ball on goal. It loops and misses the angle by a yard or two. Decent effort from the No14, who had no option but to go for goal.
3 mins - The home side are pressing high and Demel is forced back before winning a throw off left winger Brunt. Moments later, the Baggies work an opening as Odemwingie finds Brunt on the left. He swings in a cross that Reid does superbly to head away at full stretch.
4pm - West Brom get the game underway and attack. Gera puts a cross in from the right and Reid heads it clear. The Baggies come forward again after Mulumbu wins the ball back in midfield, but Jarvis is able to shield the ball and is fouled by Gera.
3.57pm - Big Sam has confirmed that George McCartney has suffered a medial knee ligament injury in training. The injury issues mean West Ham have named just six substitutes today. West Brom will kick-off shooting towards the end containing the Hammers fans. It's lively behind that goal, as the Baggies main singers seem to be in the same stand.
3.56pm - Here come the two teams. West Brom's players are wearing black armbands in memory of their late masseur Derrick Jones.
3.53pm - The two teams are going to be with us soon. It's a chilly but clear night here in the West Midlands. Can the Hammers climb to seventh in the table, or will old boys Steve Clarke and Kevin Keen leave their former employees with nothing to show for their efforts?
3.40pm - We've been out and about with the camera at The Hawthorns. See if you can spot your friends in the crowd in our Facebook gallery!
3.20pm - Ian Hendon has travelled with the first-team squad today in his new role as first-team coach. The former Tottenham Hotspur defender has enjoyed a fantastic season in charge of the Development Squad, winning the Barclays U21 Premier League Group 1 title.
3.05pm - We have the Hammers team news. One change, with Diame being replaced in midfield by Gary O'Neil. With injuries limiting Big Sam's options, West Ham have named just six substitutes for today's game. West Brom make two changes, with Billy Jones and Goran Popov replacing Steven Reid and Liam Ridgewell in the full-back positions.
West Ham United: Jaaskelainen, Demel, O'Brien, Reid, Collins, Noble, O'Neil, Nolan, Jarvis, Cole, Taylor
Subs: Spiegel, Tomkins, Spence, Moncur, Lletget, Maiga
West Bromwich Albion: Myhill, Popov, Jones, McAuley, Olsson, Mulumbu, Brunt, Gera, Morrison, Odemwingie, Long
Subs: Daniels, Tamas, Dawson, Dorrans, Rosenberg, Fortune, Lukaku
2.50pm - The Hammers have arrived at The Hawthorns and we've about ten minutes to wait until the two teams are announced. Who will Big Sam select to replace the injured Mo Diame?
Good afternoon and welcome to The Hawthorns for today's Barclays Premier League fixture between Steve Clarke's West Bromwich Albion and West Ham United.
The Hammers contest the Sunday 4pm kick-off for the second week in succession and will be hoping for better fortune than last weekend, when a James Collins own-goal condemned them to a 3-2 home defeat by Liverpool.
Sam Allardyce's side have it all to do, however, if they are to overcome a Baggies side that has lost just twice at home all season, to Manchester City and Stoke City. Big Sam has a number of injury issues, with Mo Diame (hamstring), Yossi Benayoun, Jack Collison, Andy Carroll (all knee) and Alou Diarra (thigh) all out. George McCartney is also a doubt after suffering a knock in training in midweek. West Brom are sweating on the fitness of Argentina midfielder Claudio Yacob, goalkeeper Ben Foster and former Hammers schoolboy defender Liam Ridgewell.
If West Ham are to pick up a positive result, they will need plenty of the spirit that saw them recover from a 3-0 half-time deficit to draw here in early 2011. Carlton Cole was among the scorers that afternoon. Baggies manager Clarke and assistant head coach Kevin Keen were both in the West Ham dugout.
Clarke and Keen moved to The Hawthorns in the summer, having spent last season at Liverpool. The Scot was subsequently named as the Barclays Premier League Manager of the Month for November, becoming only the second West Brom manager to win the award. Roberto Di Matteo was the first to win it in September 2010.
West Ham start the game in eleventh position, but could rise to seventh if they win and Swansea City fail to win at Tottenham Hotspur in the early kick-off. A West Brom victory would take them up to fourth, level on points with third-place Chelsea.
Captain Kevin Nolan makes his 500th senior career appearance today. Nobby has netted 98 career goals, so a brace in a West Ham victory would be the perfect scenario!
The team news will be confirmed at 3pm, with the line-ups posted first on the club's official twitter feed. We will also have an exclusive photo gallery from The Hawthorns on the club's official Facebook page.