Parker makes his point

Scott Parker was pleased with the battling display at Stoke City on Saturday that got West Ham United a precious point.

The Hammers midfielder scored his third goal in six games this season to put the visitors in front at the Britannia Stadium. Stoke came back into the contest in the second half and earned a draw with Kenwyne Jones' header. Both sides had their moments, Frederic Piquionne rattled the bar and Victor Obinna saw a low drive well saved, and Parker felt the 1-1 draw was "a fair result".

He said: "We controlled the game in the first half and probably deservedly went one-nil up. In the second half, we knew they were going to come at us, which they did.

"We can take huge positives out of today. We have come here, they have put us under immense pressure and we have defended really well. We have got a point and it is much needed."

Parker was named man of the match by broadcasters Sky Sports but there were other strong displays, with Manuel da Costa and Danny Gabbidon solid after coming into the defence on the day and Piquionne and Obinna looking lively in attack. Robert Green also had to pull off a couple of great saves from Jones and Matthew Etherington.

The display was one to cheer the manager Avram Grant, who was not present because he was observing Yom Kippur. "It is always going to be difficult when the manager is not there. We all understand the circumstances. That is football. We have just got on with it and got the result which is good.

"It is a platform for us to build on. We have got off to a bad start and come here low in confidence. We can leave high in confidence and take a lot of positives. We look forward to Tottenham next Saturday." Before the London derby, the Hammers will head to Sunderland on Carling Cup duty on Tuesday night.