Green to the rescue

Robert Green turned in another spectacular display as West Ham United battled to a 3-1 victory against Sunderland at the Boleyn Ground on Sunday. 

The England goalkeeper more than played his part in the win, not least through a stunning save from Grant Leadbitter with the scores level just before the hour mark. The young Sunderland midfielder cut inside from the edge of the area and unleashed a stinging drive that seemed destined for the net until the in-form No1 flew to his right to save.

Typically, the goalkeeper was modest about his heroics - despite manager Alan Curbishley describing it as a "match-winning" moment. "It was one of them things," Green said. "It is what you train for. He has hit it well and probably wouldn't want to hit it any better. Thankfully I have managed to get a couple of fingers on it and push it on to the post. It was pleasing to make the save at an important time."

From that platform, the home side regained the lead - with substitutes Nolberto Solano and Luis Boa Morte more than playing their part. For Green, it was clear the result mattered more than the display. "All in all it was one of them games where the goals proved critical above the performance and it was an important win after the defeats that we had had."

He had positive words for visiting striker Kenwyne Jones, who had cancelled out Carlton Cole's opener and had several other good chances. "He was a threat," Green said. "They put great balls in and you know it was maybe a case of trying to cut off the supply rather than dealing with him so much. Five minutes after they scored, you would have taken a draw because they looked a lot more threatening as a side than we did."

In the end, victory was achieved and Green was full of praise for the home support who continue to sing his praises. He said: "They are a great bunch of fans. It is fantastic to play here. It is a passionate crowd and it was probably the flattest I have seen them today until the second half when the game really got going. They will tell you what they think one way or another and you'd rather it be like that."

Next up for West Ham United is Portsmouth away on Saturday evening and Green has high hopes for another positive result against opponents who are likely to have less of a defensive approach than today's opponents. "We know we can play better. Maybe it will be easier next week when you know Portsmouth are going to play and attack.

"You look at a team of Arsenal's quality and sometimes they find it hard to break teams down so for are a team like us who are looking to improve and step forward it is something maybe we are going to come across more often at Upton Park."