STOKE CITY v WEST HAM UNITED
BARCLAYS PREMIER LEAGUE
SATURDAY 15 MARCH 2014
KICK-OFF: 3PM
REFEREE: CRAIG PAWSON

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Introduction

• West Ham United return to Barclays Premier League action away to Stoke City on Saturday as they look to get back to winning ways following a 1-0 defeat against Everton at Goodison Park last time out.

• Romelu Lukaku's late goal inflicted the Hammers' first defeat in over a month, since a 3-1 loss at home to Newcastle on 18 January.

• Four straight wins in February, including an away success against Aston Villa, combined with a draw against Chelsea, meant Sam Allardyce's side had gone five matches without defeat before their trip to Merseyside.

• The Club's fine form over the course of February means they head to the Britannia Stadium in tenth position in the Premier League, two places above Stoke although the two clubs are level on 31 points.

• On the Hammers' last trip to play the Potters, a single goal from Jack Collison was enough to secure all three points and end a run of five consecutive away defeats.

• Stoke are now under the guidance of Mark Hughes, who saw his team emerge victorious at the Boleyn Ground back in August courtesy of Jermaine Pennant's free-kick.

• The Potters have been hard to beat of late, losing only once in their last six league matches, the loss coming in the shape of a 1-0 defeat to Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium.

• Hughes' side have also won two of their last three home matches, earning impressive victories against Manchester United and more recently Arsenal in their last home outing.

• Jonathan Walters netted a penalty as Stoke earned a 1-1 draw away to Norwich City in their last Premier League match, before he was later sent-off.

• The Hammers' next Premier League goal will be their 800th at that level. In the games the notched all the previous century milestones, they have remained unbeaten.

Team news

West Ham United

• Joey O'Brien is the Hammers' only long-term injury absentee as he continues his recovery from the dislocated shoulder he suffered against Chelsea in January.

• Marco Borriello will also miss out on Saturday after failing to recover from a calf injury to face the Potters.

Stoke City

• Jonathan Walters will miss Saturday's clash after picking up a red card against Norwich City last weekend.

Last time out

Norwich City 1-1 Stoke City
Barclays Premier League
8 March 2014

Stoke City: Begovic, Cameron, Pieters, Whelan, Shawcross, Wilson, Odemwingie (Guidetti 63) (Ireland 80), N'Zonzi, Crouch, Walters, Arnautovic (Etherington 74)
Subs not used: Muniesa, Palacios, Wilkinson, Sorensen
Goals: Walters pen 73
Sent-off: Walters

Everton 1-0 West Ham United
Barclays Premier League
1 March 2014

West Ham United: Adrian, Demel (Reid 80), McCartney, Collins, Tomkins, Taylor, Noble, Nolan (c), Downing, Jarvis (Diame 66), C.Cole (Carroll 29)
Subs: Jaaskelainen, Armero, J.Cole, Nocerino

Previous meeting

A superb free-kick from Jermaine Pennant lit up a tight game that was short of quality at both ends of the pitch until the winger struck with eight minutes left. Pennant had only been on the pitch for six minutes when he bent a powerful free-kick around the wall and past the helpless Jussi Jaaskelainen to give the Potters all three points.

West Ham United 0-1 Stoke City
Barclays Premier League
31 August 2013

West Ham United: Jaaskelainen, Demel, Collins, Reid, O'Brien, Noble (Collison 84), Nolan, Diame (Lee 88), Downing (Morrison 64), Maiga, Jarvis
Subs not used: Adrian, Tomkins, Rat Taylor

Stoke City: Begovic, Cameron, Shawcross, Huth, Pieters, Wilson, N'Zonzi, Etherington (Pennant 76), Adam (Whelan 76), Walters, Jones
Subs not used: Sorensen, Muniesa, Crouch, Assaidi, Jerome
Goals: Pennant 82

Head to head

Last six meetings (Premier League unless stated)

31 August 2013 - West Ham United 0-1 Stoke City
2 March 2013 - Stoke City 0-1 West Ham United
19 November 2012 - West Ham United 1-1 Stoke City
13 March 2011 - Stoke City 2-1 West Ham United (FA Cup sixth round)
5 March 2011 - West Ham United 3-0 Stoke City
27 October 2010 - West Ham United 3-1 Stoke City (Carling Cup fourth round)

Overall record v Stoke City (all competitions) W 36 D 21 L 32

Ten-year records

West Ham United

2012/13 Premier League 10th (46 points)
2011/12 Championship 3rd (86 points - promoted to Premier League via Play-Offs)
2010/11 Premier League 20th (33 points - relegated to Championship)
2009/10 Premier League 17th (35 points)
2008/09 Premier League 9th (51 points)
2007/08 Premier League 10th (49 points)
2006/07 Premier League 15th (41 points)
2005/06 Premier League 9th (55 points)
2004/05 Championship 6th (73 points - promoted to Premier League via Play-Offs)
2003/04 Championship 4th (74 points)

Stoke City

2012/13 Premier League 13th (42 points)
2011/12 Premier League 14th (45 points)
2010/11 Premier League 13th (46 points)
2009/10 Premier League 11th (47 points)
2008/09 Premier League 12th (45 points)
2007/08 Championship 2nd (79 points - promoted to the Premier League)
2006/07 Championship 8th (73 points)
2005/06 Championship 13th (58 points)
2004/05 Championship 12th (61 points)
2003/04 Division One 11th (66 points)

Background

• West Ham United have played Stoke City on 89 occasions with the Hammers prevailing in 36 encounters, drawing 21 and losing 32 to the Potters.

• The first meeting between the pair came on 16 December 1911 at Stoke's Victoria Ground. The home side emerged as 4-3 winners despite West Ham goals from Thomas Randall and two from William Kennedy.

• West Ham's first victory against the Potters came just over a year later on 25 December 1912 when they recorded a thumping 5-0 win at the Boleyn Ground in a Southern League encounter.

• The two sides did battle again just a day later on Boxing Day 1912, with the Hammers earning their first ever win at the Victoria Ground thanks to a single goal from Danny Shea.

• On 29 March 1958 the Hammers recorded their biggest away win against Stoke City in a Division Two clash. West Ham ran out resounding 4-1 winners thanks to a brace from Vic Keeble and goals from Mike Grice and John Dick.

• The Hammers last visit to Stoke City back on 2 March 2013 ended in a 1-0 success thanks to Jack Collison's strike on the stroke of half-time.

Referee

• The man in the middle at the Britannia Stadium on Saturday afternoon will be Craig Pawson.

• 34-year-old Pawson will be taking charge of his first West Ham United match this season, but was the fourth official when the Hammers beat Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane back in October 2013.

• The official has been a referee since 1993, working his way up to the Football League where he began refereeing in 2012/13.

• Lee Betts and John Brooks will assist Pawson, while Michael Oliver will be the fourth official.

General information

• Both sets of players will don Sport Relief t-shirts during the pre-match warm-ups to show their support for the charity.

• The weather forecast for Saturday is cloudy with temperatures around 10C (50F).

• The Club have SOLD OUT their full allocation of tickets for the fixture.

• If you're travelling to Stoke by train on the weekend, click here for travel updates.