Man United 3-0 West Ham United FT

Manchester United v West Ham United
Barclays Premier League

Old Trafford
Saturday 28 August 2010
Kick-off: 5.30pm
Referee: Mark Clattenburg



Full-time score - Manchester United 3-0 West Ham United

Going to Old Trafford is never an easy task for any side, but West Ham United will be disappointed with that after an encouraging opening half-hour. Avram Grant had warned his players to adopt a positive attitude and, despite playing in a defensive 4-5-1 formation, they did just that until Wayne Rooney's penalty opener. The second goal from Nani was a killer, and from then on it was an almost impossible task to get back into the game. For the Hammers, Kieron Dyer was a plus-point, while Robert Green was up to his usual high standards. We now have a weekend off for internationals before returning to action with an easy-looking home game against Chelsea on Saturday 11 September. With the transfer window closing on Tuesday, we could well see some new players in claret and blue shirts a fortnight from today.

92 mins - We're into the final added minute as Barrera wins another corner. Noble crosses and Piquionne gets his head to the ball, but he can only glance it well wide of the far post and behind for a goal kick. Van der Sar doesn't even have time to take the kick before referee Clattenburg blows for full-time.

91 mins - We're going to have at least two more minutes. I'd say a draw is looking highly unlikely. Grant makes a third change, bringing on Junior Stanislas for Boa Morte. Noble takes a corner, but it flies over the top of everyone huddled inside the penalty area.

90 mins - Piquionne works some space in the penalty area before shooting powerfully at goal, forcing Van der Sar to save with his legs. That is only West Ham's second shot on target.

89 mins - Noble twice loses Giggs with a Cruyff turn, winning a big cheer from the away fans. Piquionne can set Barrera free, but he doesn't spot the Mexican and the chance is lost.

87 mins - Boa Morte runs at O'Shea, winning a corner. The away fans sing 'Come on you Irons!'. The corner comes to nothing and United break clear through Giggs.

86 mins - There are an awful lot of empty red seats around as the home fans make for the exits ahead of time. Those that are still here watch Barrera cut on to his left foot, but his low shot is blocked by a sliding defender.

85 mins - West Ham clear the corner and Noble picks out Parker. He holds the ball up under pressure from Smalling and finds Barrera, but the Mexican's attempted curler is wayward.

84 mins - United win a corner off Upson as Giggs threatens to add a fourth following good work from Owen and Nani.

83 mins - I think the score is about Man United 3 West Ham 6 in the away end now, and the away fans nearly have a goal to celebrate for real as Parker cuts inside Smalling, but stumbles as he shoots and the ball flies past the far post.

80 mins - Piquionne and Cole combine and it looks like the new No9 is in on goal, only for Vidic to slide in and prevent Cole from shooting. Great challenge.

79 mins - According to the travelling fans, West Ham have now scored three 'goals' to level matters... Now they're mocking the home fans!

77 mins - Barrera runs at Smalling, who blocks before presenting the ball to Noble. Unfortunately, his shot is weak and straight at Van der Sar. The away fans keep up the good humour by pretending the Hammers have scored a goal. When it's been more than a year since the last away win, you can't blame them for having a bit of a laugh.

75 mins - Dyer applauds the fans as he is replaced by Piquionne. The away fans are having fun as usual, chanting 'We're going to win 4-3'. Optimistic, but you can't fault them. They've been an absolute credit again this evening.

74 mins - A small bit of good news. Loanee Matt Fry marked his Charlton Athletic debut with a goal in a 3-1 defeat at Huddersfield Town this afternoon. Back here, Berbatov, Evans and Scholes are replaced by Michael Owen, Chris Smalling and Michael Carrick.

69 mins - GOAL! Berbatov. Again, it is so easy for United. O'Shea has an age to pick out his man from wide on the right and finds Nani. He also has time and space to clip a cross to the far post to the unmarked Bulgarian, who finishes with an outstanding scissor kick.

68 mins - There are 75,061 fans inside Old Trafford today. You wouldn't think it, though. It's very, very quiet.

67 mins - Boa Morte does not track O'Shea until it is too late and when the midfielder catches up with the full-back, he can only foul him a couple of yards outside the penalty area wide on the right. Giggs takes and goes for goal, but the shot goes over the top.

65 mins - Giggs wins a corner off Spector. Nani trots across to take, but his effort is dire and straight to Barrera.

64 mins - Barrera makes his first contribution, driving in a cross from the right, but it's too close to Van der Sar. United break and Evra crosses low, but just too far in front of the sliding Nani.

63 mins - As so often happens, the team making a change momentarily loses concentration. Evra crosses low to Berbatov, who rolls the ball into the path of Scholes. The flame-haired midfielder drives in a first-time shot, but it's straight at Green.

62 mins - A first change for West Ham, with Barrera replacing Faubert.

60 mins - Boa Morte brings down Nani. That's not very nice, especially as Nani was a guest at Boa Morte's wedding last summer!

58 mins - Upson is booked and he can't have any complaints as he unceremoniously hauls back England team-mate Rooney.

56 mins - For the second weekend running, Dyer is denied his first West Ham goal by the post. Boa Morte picks out Faubert, who flicks the ball into Dyer's path, but his curling shot clips the outside of the upright.

53 mins - Better from Gabbidon. Nani's pass is flicked on by Berbatov into the path of Rooney. It looks odds-on that the striker will score a third before the Welshman slides in to dispossess the England man.

52 mins - Noble sends Faubert clear and he crosses low to the feet of Cole. The No9 tries to win a corner off Vidic, but the ball loops high into the hands of Van der Sar.

50 mins - GOAL! That's it. Game over. Nani picks up the ball 40 yards out and it is far, far too easy as he bursts past Gabbidon and laces a left foot shot past Green.

48 mins - Giggs runs at Spector again, but cannot get the better of his former team-mate as he concedes a free-kick deep inside the West Ham half.

46 mins - West Ham attack in a hushed opening to the second half, keeping possession well as Faubert wins a throw in, but it comes to nothing.

West Ham emerge first from the tunnel to my left. Green and Upson give the away fans a clap as they run towards the penalty area. No changes from either manager, I don't think. Here come United and the officials. So, can Grant's men pull it out of the fire and snatch an unlikely draw. One thing is for certain, they need to keep things tight in the opening moments of the second 45 minutes.

Half-time score - Manchester United 1-0 West Ham United

48 mins - Upson is at Berbatov's heels as referee Clattenburg blows up for half-time.

46 mins - As I type, Scholes and Giggs rob Parker before sending Nani completely free through the middle. He takes a touch and tries to lob Green, only to completely make a hash of it and the ball flies over the crossbar.

46 mins - We're going to have at least another two minutes and they can't go by quickly enough for Avram Grant. West Ham are clinging on a bit here...

43 mins - Berbatov should probably make it 2-0. Spector gave possession away inside the United half and the home side broke away. Giggs again teased the American before crossing. Berbatov's first shot is blocked and when the Bulgarian reacts quickest to the loose ball, he can only slice his shot over the top from ten yards.

42 mins - Although United have carried the greater threat, West Ham can consider themselves unlucky to be a goal down as half-time approaches. They've kept the ball fairly well, but just not quite had the quality when they've got into the final third.

40 mins - Nani gets on the end of Rooney's clever pass and looks to be through, only for Gabbidon to stop him in his tracks with a fine interception. United keep up the pressure and work the ball wide to Giggs. His cross is headed clear to Fletcher, who looks up and curls a shot that looks destined for the top corner until Green makes a miraculous save to divert the ball behind. The corner is headed clear at the near post by Cole.

39 mins - Dyer bursts forward again and beats O'Shea, but he is challenged on the edge of the D and United scramble the ball clear.

37 mins - A fine challenge from Upson sends Noble on the counter-attack. Cole makes a run, but is not spotted. Dyer also supports the attack, but West Ham choose to go back and rebuild.

36 mins - Giggs passes short to Nani, whose low shot is blocked by Cole. Another corner... Green punches powerfully clear.

35 mins - The home fans suddenly find their voices and roar Nani on as he loses Ilunga. Thankfully, Parker is there again to block his cross behind. The initial corner comes to nothing, but Giggs regains possession and crosses, forcing Gabbidon to head behind.

34 mins - GOAL! Rooney sends Green the wrong way from the spot.

33 mins - After more than holding their own for half-an-hour, West Ham hand United the perfect chance to take the lead as Spector brings down Giggs inside the penalty area.

32 mins - Parker again, sliding in hard on Berbatov and knocking the ball out for a throw. The away supporters are mocking the alleged geographical spread of the home support.

31 mins - Brilliant again from Hammer of the Year Parker, who stops Giggs in his tracks with a sliding challenge before Scholes fouls Boa Morte.

30 mins - Cole looks like he'll be OK to continue after some treatment for an arm problem. Sir Trevor Brooking is also here, I see, sitting next to Capello.

28 mins - Better. Cole holds off his marker before poking the ball to Dyer, who cuts inside and shoots into the side-netting at the near post. Moments later, Parker tries to play in Cole but Vidic matches him stride for stride before halting the striker's charge with a superb challenge on the edge of the penalty area. Cole needs the physio on after that, it was a strong tackle.

27 mins - A brief respite for the Hammers as Nani is penalised for tripping Dyer. The away fans celebrate with a chorus of 'Bubbles'.

25 mins - All of a sudden, West Ham look vulnerable as Noble gifts possession to the home side as he tries to clear his lines. Rooney finds Nani, but the Portuguese winger's shot on the turn flies a mile over the top.

24 mins - Well done Green! Berbatov flicks the ball nonchalantly to Nani, who takes a touch and unleashes a rocket shot that the No1 can only help on to the crossbar. Thankfully, the ball bounces clear of danger.

23 mins - Parker and Noble both show great composure to turn away from danger and keep possession. West Ham play the ball back to Green, who finds Ilunga. Dyer ghosts past O'Shea and pulls the ball back to Noble, whose shot hits Vidic before United scramble the ball clear.

21 mins - The corner comes to nothing but Scholes finds Giggs. He plays in Nani, who holds off Faubert before crossing into the arms of Green.

20 mins - Noble slightly miscontrols the ball and slides in on Rooney, catching the United man. Referee Clattenburg immediately books the midfielder. Moments later, Upson is penalised for a foul on Berbatov and, after United take it short, Dyer concedes a corner.

19 mins - Faubert does well to outmuscle Rooney before West Ham break forward. Cole does superbly to twice beat Vidic to the ball. Dyer picks up possession and holds on to the ball, teasing Evans before curling a cross over that is too high for Boa Morte.

17 mins - United have a free-kick in a very dangerous position as Nani goes down very easily under a challenge from Spector. Rooney is all over this... So Nani takes the kick himself and it dips a yard over the crossbar.

15 mins - Scott Parker has been absolutely everywhere so far. Fabio Capello is here, and with news breaking that Frank Lampard will miss England's two opening UEFA European Championship qualifiers, perhaps the No8 could force his way into the Italian's thinking.

14 mins - Another shooting chance for Rooney, this time just inside the West Ham penalty area, but Upson throws himself in the way of the ball and blocks with his back.

13 mins - It is absolutely tipping it down and a few players are having trouble keeping their feet. Boa Morte and now Evans have both slipped over in recent minutes.

11 mins - United break and there is a buzz when Rooney picks up possession 35 yards out. He beats Parker and Upson before shooting low, but straight at Green. Good hands from the England goalkeeper.

10 mins - It has all gone a bit quiet here as Parker spreads play with a superb 40-yard driven pass to Ilunga. Parker takes control again and finds Faubert. He uses Spector as a decoy before crossing too high for Cole. O'Shea has time to clear with ease.

9 mins - The 1,100 travelling fans to my left are in fine voice, making themselves heard over the 74,000 home supporters in the stadium. It was sunny 20 minutes ago, but now it's raining...

7 mins - Boa Morte goes in hard but fair on Evra, conceding a corner. The two players high-five. Good to see. Nani crosses and Cole heads clear to Scholes, who is closed down immediately by Parker. United keep up the pressure but Berbatov is offside when he shoots into the side-netting.

6 mins - West Ham have started fairly well here. Faubert features twice in quick succession, seeing his first pass for Cole cut out before surging past Evans and crossing low, only for Vidic to muscle out the West Ham No9.

4 mins - Boa Morte feeds Dyer, who runs at O'Shea and cuts inside the right-back, only for the Irishman to get a toe in and poke the ball clear as Dyer gets into the box. 

3 mins - Evra gets past Spector's sliding challenge and tries to pick out Berbatov at the far post, but Green judges the flight well to catch above his head.

2 mins - Scholes drops deep to pick the ball up from Jonny Evans before spreading wide to Nani with a superb 40-yard pass. United attack, but Boa Morte breaks it up.

1 min - West Ham start confidently, winning possession and keeping the ball for 30 seconds until Spector over-hits a through ball for Cole through to Van der Sar.

5.30pm - Wayne Rooney receives a couple of awards - strange timing - before the two captains get together. The toss results in the two teams swapping ends. United will attack the Stretford End and will also kick-off. We're underway...

5.26pm - Here come the two teams... Matthew Upson is captaining West Ham, while Nemanja Vidic is wearing the armband for United.

5.23pm - The sprinklers are on as we approach kick-off. United have been playing some superb football this season, with golden oldies Scholes and Giggs to the fore. West Ham will need to be at their resilient best to get anything out of this game, but manager Grant has warned his team not to be beaten before kick-off. A positive attitude is the approach the new manager wants to see, and where better to start than at Old Trafford?

5.20pm - Marek Stech and goalkeeper coach David Coles are the last to leave the pitch after some last-minute crossing and catching practice. Coles really is a workaholic. He is often at Chadwell Heath late into the afternoon working with Robert Green and his other charges.

5.15pm - It may be only quarter-past five, but the floodlights are already on here at Old Trafford. The weather has been really changeable today, with bright sunshine being followed by torrential rain. For now, despite some menacing clouds gathering overhead, it is dry.

5.10pm - Both teams are out on the pitch here at Old Trafford going through their pre-match warm-ups. A few famous faces are here watching on. Former Newcastle United and England forward Peter Beardsley is in the Press Box. Results earlier this afternoon have left West Ham bottom of the table, but a draw would carry the Hammers up two places. A victory would lift Grant's men to at least 14th in the standings.

Good afternoon and welcome to Old Trafford for this afternoon's Barclays Premier League visit to Manchester United.

Manager Avram Grant has decided to stick with West Ham United's tried and tested, picking a complete team of players who were at the club prior to his arrival in June.

Grant has made two changes to the side that lost 3-1 at home to Bolton Wanderers a week ago, with new boys Frederic Piquionne and Pablo Barrera dropping to the bench in favour of Luis Boa Morte and Jonathan Spector.

Robert Green will start in goal, with former United right-back Jonathan Spector, Danny Gabbidon, Matthew Upson and Herita Ilunga at the back. The midfield will see Scott Parker flanked by Julien Faubert, Kieron Dyer, Luis Boa Morte and Mark Noble, while Carlton Cole will lead the forward line.

Hosts United have Wayne Rooney back after the England forward missed last weekend's draw at Fulham with a stomach bug. Rooney replaces Javier Hernandez. Antonio Valencia and Ji-Sung Park also drop out, with Nani and Ryan Giggs restored to the starting lineup.

One bonus for the Hammers is that Rooney has failed to score in 13 matches - a run stretching to 1,081 minutes.

Manchester United: Van der Sar, O'Shea, Vidic, Evans (Smalling 74), Evra, Nani, Scholes (Carrick 74), Fletcher, Giggs, Berbatov (Owen 74), Rooney
Subs: Kuszczak, Rafael, Valencia, Hernandez

West Ham United: Green, Spector, Gabbidon, Upson, Ilunga, Parker, Boa Morte (Stanislas 90), Noble, Faubert (Barrera 62), Dyer (Piquionne 75), Cole
Subs: Stech, Da Costa, Kovac, McCarthy