Big Sam on Saints stalemate

Sam Allardyce was once again full of praise for his West Ham United side after the secured a 1-1 home draw with second-placed Southamton. For the second game in a row the Hammers  had to play for the majority of the match with ten men after Matty Taylor was sent off in the 18th minute.

Mark Noble had again put the home side in front from the penalty spot but the Saints pushed hard for an equaliser and finally got back into the match when Jos Hooiveld prodded home in the 75th minutes.

How would you sum up that performance Sam?

SA: It's an unbelievable performance as for the second consecutive occasion it looked like everything was going against us. I relate to the spirit of the team and the squad and the belief of the team that even with ten men they said 'We're not going to get beaten'. With the crowd behind us and cheering us all on the lads did an unbelievable job again and it was only an unlucky bounce of the ball into the defender's shins that put them in the right place to poke it in.

They couldn't break us down in open play and we had some good saves from Rob Green when we needed them. Even with ten men Julien Faubert nipped in front of the goalkeeper but it's just rolled out for a goal-kick when it could easily have just dropped to his feet for a sidefoot into the back of the net.

Great credit to the lads and four points from two games with ten men after eight minutes and ten men after 17 minutes is terrific stuff and we've just go to pick it up from here. It's an unbelievable point and it feels like a win. We're playing the team that's right up there at the top of the league and they couldn't break us down."

What did you make of Ricardo Vaz Te and Nicky Maynard?

SA: "Well with Nicky, it would have been a great goal had the one he hit on the turn gone in. It would have been unbelievable for us to get the second goal tonight but maybe we were asking a bit too much. He held it up and he was up there on his own. You can see the quality that Vaz Te has got and he nearly scored in the first minute and it was a good save from the keeper.

The way we started the game it looked like we were up for it and it looked like we wanted it. We were in full flow and had Southampton were on the back foot. We'll have to accept a draw as an outstanding result with ten men for as long as had."

How vital was Mark Noble's early penalty?

SA: "To go as long as we did again and hold out is just terrific. We went 1-0 in front from the penalty which was very important as had we had to do it from 0-0 then we would have found it harder.

I've got great players and great characters who believe in what we're trying to do. I imagine if we have that same attitude when we have eleven versus eleven we should go on and start to win a few more games."