Bolton 2-1 West Ham United FT

Barclays Premier League
Saturday 21 February 2009

Referee: Steve Tanner


Bolton Wanderers: Jaaskelainen, Steinsson, Cahill, Puygrenier (Andrew O'Brien 73), Samuel, Kevin Davies, Mark Davies, McCann, Gardner, Taylor, Elmander (Muamba 76)
Subs not used: Al Habsi, Smolarek, Makukula, Shittu, Basham
Goals: Taylor 10, Kevin Davies 11

West Ham United: Green, Spector (Sears 85), Collins (Tomkins 16), Upson, Ilunga, Behrami, Parker, Noble, Collison (Savio 62), Cole, Di Michele
Subs not used: Lastuvka, Lopez, Kovac, Tristan
Booked: Upson, Noble
Goal: Parker 66


90min - The referee blows for full time.

90min - We are playing three minutes of added time.

90min - We are into the final minute here. A half-chance for Sears but the keeper saves.

88min - It looks like being so near but so far for the visitors. It is not for the want of trying though after a strong second half.

86min - Loud shot from the home side for a penalty after Kevin Davies fell under pressure from Tomkins. The referee rightly waves play on.

85min - Freddie Sears is coming on for Spector. Savio allowed the change to be made with a wayward shot that went high and wide from distance. 

83min - Behrami gets a chance to shoot after more sustained pressure. The shot is weak though and comfortably saved.

82min - So close for Cole. After the corner was cleared to Savio, the substitute whipped the ball in for the No12 to head goalwards. He made a good downward connection but it was straight at the keeper.

81min - Cole beats Jaaskelainen to the ball before Bolton scramble it away for another corner.

80min - Taylor's free-kick hits the wall and from the follow-up his low shot is saved by Green low to his right.

79min - The referee penalises Upson on the edge of the area after a foul on Kevin Davies.

77 min - Fabrice Muamba is on to replace Elmander.

75 min - If West Ham keep up this pressure, something has to give in the Bolton defence. They are really creaking at the back.

74 min - Amazing clearance from Cahill. Di Michele dances around Jaaskelainen, only for the defender to slide in and hack his shot off the line.

73 min - Puygrenier is replaced by Andy O'Brien. That is Bolton's first change.

72 min - Di Michele wins yet another corner. It is half-cleared to Savio, who wins yet another flag-kick.

70 min - West Ham are bang on top now. All they need to do is turn their pressure into a goal. They have shown real spirit during the second half.

69 min - McCann brings down Cole 30 yards from goal. Noble's free-kick is deflected out for a corner.

67 min - The Hammers force a corner, but Bolton scramble the ball clear.

66 min - GOAL! West Ham are back in it. Parker drives through the midfield, his pass cannons off Cole into the path of Spector, who crosses near-post and Parker is on hand to shoot past Jaaskelainen from close-range.

63 min - Cahill does well to deny Cole a shooting chance.

62 min - Savio is on as Gianfranco Zola makes his first change. Collison is the man who comes off.

61 min - Upson concedes a corner. Taylor takes and...the referee spots an infringement inside the West Ham penalty area.

60 min - This time it is the home fans who are livid as Tanner penalises Taylor for a foul on Green. Straight up the other end and Jaaskelainen clings on to Parker's near-post cross. Half-an-hour to play...

59 min - Elmander appears to take out Noble well after he has played a pass, but the referee does not even see the challenge.

58 min - Cole chases a through ball and challenges Jaaskelainen, who does not appear to have control of the ball. As Cole comes clear, the referee blows for a foul.

57 min - Elmander takes a touch and launches a shot that nearly flies out of the stadium.

56 min - Puygrenier is back on his feet and back on the pitch after treatment.

55 min - Noble challenges Puygrenier and the French defender writhes around on the floor. The midfielder will now miss next Sunday's home match against Manchester City through suspension.

54 min - Green goes down smartly to his right to keep out Taylor's hooked shot. After a bit of intricate interplay, the Hammers clear their lines.

53 min - There is not much going on to be honest. Bolton have threatened on a couple of occasions, but West Ham are standing firm.

47 min - Mark Davies concedes a corner. Noble crosses, Tomkins flicks on and Cole heads goalwards, only for Taylor to nod off his own goalline. West Ham have started well here.

46 min - West Ham are playing towards their own fans this half. The away support has been superb, as always, this afternoon. Let's hope the players can give them something to sing about.

West Ham's players are out first for the second half. Two minutes later, Bolton appear. We're nearly ready to go again.


48 min - Cole goes down in the Bolton box, but there is nothing doing there. The half-time whistle blows. West Ham are down but they are certainly not out of this match. An early goal after the break is vital, though.

46 min - There will be three minutes of added-time.

45 min - Kevin Davies gets a talking to following a strong aerial challenge on Upson. West Ham have got Bolton a bit rattled here. They just need a goal before the break and the second half could be really interesting...

44 min - Good defensive work from Ilunga leads to Collison playing in Cole, but the ball will just not roll for the England man and his weak shot rolls into the arms of Jaaskelainen.

42 min - More good build-up play, this time from Behrami and Ilunga, ends with Di Michele's volley being deflected over the top. Noble's corner is met by Upson, but the ball flies into the stand.

40 min - On the plus side, the Hammers have opened up the Bolton defence twice in the space of three minutes. A goal before half-time could be vital.

39 min - Noble sends Di Michele clear. He races into the penalty area and opens up his body to curl the ball into the far corner but makes a mess of it and the ball flies well wide of the target.

36 min - A brilliant piece of interplay from Cole sees Noble go clear inside the Bolton half. He tries to square the ball for Collison, but Cahill intercepts. The ball breaks to Noble, but his attempted lob is pushed over by Jaaskelainen.

35 min - West Ham are working hard for an opening, but Bolton look strong at the back.

32 min - Ilunga wins a corner with a nice bit of skill. Upson is going forward. Jaaskelainen makes a good claim.

30 min - Upson is struggling again. This time he is hurt challenging Kevin Davies for a high ball. It looks like his right foot.

29 min - Mark Davies concedes a left-wing corner. Noble will take... The ball falls to Di Michele at the far post, he controls but drags his left-foot shot well wide.

27 min - Kevin Davies wins a corner off Upson. It may not be the prettiest, but Bolton's football has been effective so far. Garnder launches a wayward shot miles over the top.

25 min - Di Michele's pass nearly sets Cole away, but Bolton's defence recovers. The striker looks on his game this afternoon. He's already had a couple of threatening runs. If the Hammers can get a goal back, it will be well and truly game on.

23 min - Upson is booked for a challenge on Kevin Davies. It was a bit late. That is the England man's first yellow card of the season.

21 min - Good football from Tomkins and Noble nearly sets Cole clear, but McCann intercepts the pass. That was close.

19 min - Upson gets a boo from the Bolton supporters as he heads for the touchline after receiving treatment. A bit harsh, that is.

18 min - The Hammers need to re-group. There is plenty of time to get back into this game. Meanwhile, the home fans are incensed when referee Tanner stops the game for Upson to be treated for a head injury as Bolton go on the attack.

17 min - A chance for West Ham to get back in it as Collison is brought down 30 yards from goal. Cahill does well to divert Noble's free-kick out for a corner. The ball is cleared.

16 min - The home crowd give Collins a good round of applause as he is taken off on a stretcher. Tomkins is on for his first Premier League start since the final day of last term.

15 min - The stretcher-bearers are coming to Collins' aid, while James Tomkins is already stripped and ready to come on for his first Premier League appearance of the season.

13 min - Can things get any worse for West Ham? Collins is injured making a sliding challenge on Elmander and immediately signals to the bench that he needs treatment for a left hamstring injury.

11 min - GOAL! Unbelievable. Johan Elmander's cross looks to be a mis-hit, but it rolls behind Ricardo Gardner and Upson into the path of Kevin Davies, who slots the ball past Green's despairing dive. Davies also scored in Bolton's 3-1 win at the Boleyn Ground back in October.

10 min - GOAL! Matthew Taylor scores with an inch-perfect free-kick that flies over the wall and into Green's top left-hand corner. That was unstoppable. Taylor has now scored in both league matches against West Ham this season.

9 min - Maybe I was being a bit harsh on Bolton. A neat Kevin Davies backheel finds namesake Mark, who is brought down by Collison 25 yards from goal. This is a real chance.

7 min - Ilunga plays a lovely one-two with Di Michele and cuts the ball back to Cole, but the striker's shot is blocked behind by Gary Cahill. The ensuing corner is headed well wide by Di Michele.

6 min - This is a real clash of styles. West Ham are trying to knock the ball around, while Bolton are aiming long passes towards Kevin Davies, who is up against Herita Ilunga.

5 min -  Scott Parker is harshly penalished for a sliding challenge on McCann. He is clearly unhappy with the referee's decision. Taylor's free-kick bounces harmlessly into Green's arms.

4 min - Noble plays a one-two with Jack Collison but his shot is inadvertantly blocked by Cole.

3 min - Matthew Taylor forces Jonathan Spector into conceding an early corner. It is worked short and cleared for another one by Mark Noble. The ball is flicked-on at the near-post and into Green's arms by Gary Cahill. West Ham break, but Noble's through ball is just too strong for David Di Michele and Jussi Jaaskelainen clears.

2 min - A game of penalty area pinball ends with Gavin McCann slicing a volley well wide of Robert Green's right-hand post.

1 min - We're off! Carlton Cole is caught offside from an early Hammers attack.

2.59pm - As if by magic, the tarpaulin is gone and referee Steve Tanner calls together the two captains - Davies for Bolton and Matthew Upson for West Ham United.

2.58pm - There is still a huge tarpaulin covering a section of the pitch. They will have to move that in a hurry if we're to start on time.

2.57pm - Here come the two teams...

2.56pm - Bolton are expected to line up in a 4-5-1 formation with new captain Kevin Davies wide on the right wing.

2.54pm - The atmosphere is building here at the Reebok Stadium. There are plenty of empty blue, red and white seats, however. Behind the goal, the 3,000 travelling Hammers are making plenty of noise.

2.52pm - Contrary to some reports, David Di Michele is starting for West Ham this afternoon. Tony Stokes has signed for Hungarian side Ujpest FC on loan until the end of the season. Hope that clears up any confusion!

2.50pm - Bolton's players have returned to the warmth of the home dressing room, but West Ham United's players are still going through their final preparations on the pitch. Carlton Cole and Jack Collison finish their warm-up by firing shots past Hungary Under-21 goalkeeper Peter Kurucz, who has travelled with the first-team this afternoon.

Bolton Wanderers: Jaaskelainen, Steinsson, Samuel, Cahill, Puygrenier, K Davies, McCann, M Davies, Gardner, Taylor, Elmander. Subs: Al Habsi, Shittu, Basham, Muamba, A O'Brien, Smolarek, Makakula.

West Ham United: Green, Spector, Collins, Upson, Ilunga, Behrami, Parker, Noble, Collison, Di Michele, Cole. Subs: Lastuvka, Lopez, Tomkins, Kovac, Savio, Sears, Tristan

The early team news is in ahead of West Ham United's Premier League fixture at Bolton Wanderers this afternoon. The Hammers are looking for their first victory in nine attempts at the Trotters' Reebok Stadium.

West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola has been handed a huge boost with the news that England striker Carlton Cole has overcome a left ankle problem to take his place alongside David Di Michele in attack. At the back, suspended captain Lucas Neill was replaced by United States international Jonathan Spector. The 23-year-old has made just one previous appearance this season, as a late substitute in the home win over Stoke City in December. His last start, ironically, came in the Hammers 1-0 defeat at Bolton on 12 April last year.

Bolton have made three changes to the team that lost 3-0 at Everton in their last Premier League fixture a fortnight ago. Johan Elmander, Gavin McCann and Ricardo Gardner replaced Ariza Makakula, Fabrice Muamba and Andy O'Brien. Former Hammers trainee J'Lloyd Samuel was named at left-back.

It's a cold day in Bolton, or should I say Horwich as that is where the Reebok Stadium is actually situated. The blue skies that we left behind in the south east this morning have been replaced by white clouds and a chilly breeze.