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West Ham United
2 February 2013
• Boleyn Ground, London
Referee: L. Probert
• Attendance: 34962
West Ham United
A. Carroll 77'
Sam Allardyce made the right decisions today, and the most important one was starting a not fully fit Andy Carroll. The England striker was unplayable at times (he's been called that before) and he proved the difference in the end. Thanks for reading everyone, I've been Tim Poole and you've been a great audience. Full time: West Ham 1 Swansea 0!
A terrific second half performance from the hosts gives them only their second win in 10 and an admirable yet tame effort from the visitors sees their seven match unbeaten run come to a shuddering halt.
IT'S ALL OVER! And Andy Carroll's second half header ends up grabbing West Ham a thoroughly deserved win.
90' + 4'
Carroll desperately looks to keep the ball in the corner to waste time...
90' + 2'
The visitors are still pushing for an equaliser here but the hosts are doing all they can to deny them!
90' + 1'
90' + 1'
Yellow Card Chico
CHANCE! For Swansea! Jaaskelainen was all at sea but still managed to keep the ball out. Further down the pitch, the home side finally grab a breather as the visitors are penalised for a foul.
It's incessant Swansea pressure now - chance after chance! Can the hosts hold on?
Vaz Te sends a shot hopelessly wide (and high) of the mark, but it won't bother the home fans as they at least have the ball in the opposition half.
Carroll has been simply unstoppable in the air today. The England striker has been frustrated and isolated at times, but when he's been given the service, he has duly delivered.
Dyer charges down the middle but a loose ball is collected by Jaaskelainen before the winger can get his hands, feet or head on the ball.
They were seven matches unbeaten before today and they have dominated possession during the course of this match, but the away side look as though they may be going home empty handed today.
Allardyce prepares a defensive substitution as the home side look to weather the Swansea storm.
Anxious moments for the home fans and the occasional whistle can be heard from the West Ham faithful as the visitors pile on the pressure. The hosts are sitting very deep.
The visitors are keen to grab an equaliser as soon as they can, here, although the spirit of the home players looks as though it may just carry them over the line.
But what's this... CHANCE for Swansea as Ki comes close with a finish from inside the box. Great stop from Jaaskelainen.
Caroll has been fantastic this half and so have the rest of the home side. The Upton Park faithful have been a handy 12th man, as well.
Assist Mark Noble
Goal Andy Carroll
GOALLLLLL!!! The hosts break the deadlock and it's that man Andy Carroll! A typical Hammers goal as a dream of a corner is whipped in and the target man leaps high into the air to smash his header home. 1-0 West Ham.
Cole whips a great ball in and Vaz Te almost makes it two for the hosts! This second half has been an inspiration from the Hammers and it may well change the course of their season.
An injection of pace as Nathan Dyer comes on for the visitors. He's been off-colour recently, but at his best his pace simply unlocks defences.
Now it's a penalty appeal for the Hammers! Calls for a handball once again denied and the ball just seems to be pinging around the Swansea area non-stop at the moment.
CHANCE!! Tremmel is having a brilliant afternoon and it's England striker Carroll that he now denies. The target man thumped a ferocious shot straight at the German but it was so fast the shot stopper barely knew anything about it but he duly produced a reflex save.
For all the excitement here, there have still been no goals... Is a 0-0 on the cards? If so, I'm sure Laudrup will easily be the happier of the two managers.
Diame holds his head in his hands after lashing at his shot and sending it proverbial miles over the crossbar.
It's a fluid, lively encounter here at Upton Park now and what's more, it's a finely balanced contest.
TACKLE! Fantastic intervention from Ben Davies as the Vaz Te almost goes one on one with Tremmel but the left-back slides in Hollywood style and strips the striker of the ball with a clean challenge.
And it's Michu again who glances a header just over! Perhaps the visitors' best two chances of the game there - but they were half-chances at best.
CHANCE! Michu is unleashed by the Swansea midfield but the Spaniard was always drifting towards the left and ended up firing over from a tight angle, although he could have looked for options to cross to instead.
The home crowd absolutely roar as Joe Cole is introduced in the hope of some magic from the former England international.
The home side are still threatening, though, and another Jarvis cross is played in but with no one on the end of it.
Half an hour remains here as we have returned to our normal pattern of Swansea dominance in possession.
The visitors' change sees Ki drop deeper into midfield alongside De Guzman, with Moore pushing further up the pitch. Definitely an attacking move from Laudrup.
Jaaskelainen comfortably palms away a 25-yard free kick from the away side but the visitors are starting to put together a period of pressure.
Luke Moore enters the fray in place of Britton - who has produced yet another admirable effort, running himself into the ground.
The visitors win a corner but it's definitely the home side who have enjoyed the best of this second half so far.
The hosts push into the penalty area once again but it is cleared haphazardly.
CHANCE! West Ham are knocking on the door as Carroll has space inside the area but fires his shot over the bar. A better finish and it probably would have been 1-0.
Swansea yet to really see the ball in this second half; it's as though the half-time break never came - the hosts are pushing to open the scoring just as they were beforehand.
Still no goals here at Upton Park but it's been a lively affair, I can assure you. If it does end 0-0 - it certainly won't be the worst 0-0 ever known to man.
And Tremmel is called into action again! Deja vu as Vaz Te takes a trike from range and the German keeps the scores level once more.
A long ball is launched up to target man Carroll but Tremmel intervenes to collect the ball in mid-air.
The home side get us underway in the second half! Will this be the 45 minutes that arrests the Hammers' recent slide or will the visitors go from strength to strength?
Join us for the second half shortly. It promises to be a cracker!
In the away dressing room, Michael Laudrup will be delighted with his side's application in the opening period. They have looked shy in front of goal, however, and for all their possession stats, it's looked painfully obvious why they have drawn so many games so far this season.
Vaz Te's shot was the last significant action of the half and the hosts will be disappointed that neither his nor two of Nolan's efforts have given them the lead. Nevertheless, there have been encouraging signs for the home side in their bid to win only their second match in 10 attempts.
HALF-TIME! The whistle has gone here at Upton Park and it's the home side who go into the break on the up, although the visitors have completely dominated the possession stats during the opening 45 minutes.
However... CHANCE! Ricardo Vaz Te launches a stinging near-post shot from a tight angle, but Tremmel is on hand to rescue his side once again.
The hosts waste a good chance after a quickly taken free kick leaves them three against two. Slow passing and a failure to look for options was a crime committed by all in Claret and Blue.
Hernandez storms into the home penalty area with the ball at his feet, but a strong Taylor challenge sends the ball out for a corner.
Michu whips in an inviting cross but Jaaskelainen gets between the ball and Hernandez.
Allardyce may consider the skilful link-up play of Joe Cole for the second half. The hosts' initial build-up play is effective, but it is joining their frontline with their midfield five where there is a problem. Cole plays between the lines well to good effect and would be a serious option here today.
It's been all Swansea in terms of possession - but all West Ham, and Nolan more specifically, in terms of chances.
CHANCE! It's groundhog day as Tremmel denies Nolan once more. Carroll did fantastically to nod down to his captain and Nolan fired a powerful shot at goal from inside the box, but the German keeper was equal to it and palmed it away with authority.
Long ball after long ball is sent towards the Swansea penalty area, but this time one bounces out for a goal kick. Carroll, meanwhile, is a picture of pure frustration as he stands isolated at the top of the park.
The hosts win a free kick just inside the visitors' half and push bodies forward. Nonetheless, their players and fans alike have been forced into a period of anxiety as the visitors restrict them with pressure and tiki-taka passing.
A mix-up in the opposition penalty area not only denies West Ham a goal, but it denies them a shot in the first place. The home side had two players in the box well placed to produce an effort, but both Vaz Te and Carroll went for the same ball and it ended up trickling out of play.
The pressure is to no avail as Tomkins leaps and sends a header high over the bar. At least the shot tally has increased...
After occasional early flashes, it has to be said that Carroll has hardly been involved so far - the hosts will need to show a lot more attacking potency if they are to grab the three points today. Here's their chance as they win a corner.
It's becoming harder and harder to recollect a West Ham chance as the clock ticks on. The visitors are now totally in control of possession.
Or should that be taking flight... One thing not taking flight when the visitors are in possession is the ball as neat, low passes ping from one away player to another.
And yet more pressure from the visitors as Hernandez comes close! The Swans are definitely starting to find their feet, here.
Jaaskelainen almost gets caught in No Man's Land as the shot stopper finds himself on the ball under pressure near the corner flag! He duly sends the ball out for a throw-in, however.
At home, it is usually a different story for Sam Allardyce's side, however. The hosts have won five times and drawn four, only losing three times at Upton Park so far this season.
An encouraging sign for the Hammers so far is a relatively simple one: they have not yet conceded. At Fulham on Wednesday night, they conceded three, while they shipped five at the Emirates.
CHANCE! A great cross is delivered in to skipper Nolan who fires from close range but is denied by a firm Tremmel save.
Diame and Carroll getting heavily involved and linking up well so far, but the England striker called for a first time pass from the midfielder on this occasion and was left frustrated as he was called offside when a delayed pass was finally released.
Leon Britton, meanwhile, has been faultless on the ball so far, as would be expected.
No goals so far here at Upton Park and something tells me the first goal may be crucial. The stats say that Swansea have had 64% of possession, but the Hammers have created marginally more up front so far.
First real chance for the Hammers, albeit one from outside the box. Carroll does what he does best and heads it down for Diame, who has a couple of yards of space and unleashes a tempting shot, but does not end up troubling Tremmel.
Jonathan De Guzman has a shot from a 30-yard free-kick... and it sails hopelessly wide. Certainly not the midfielder's best ever effort!
Loud appeals for a handball in the Swansea penalty area, but the referee waves them away and West Ham waste the resultant chance with a shot that ends up closer to Row Z than it is to being on target.
The away side almost give possession away cheaply at the back but manage to hold on and play the ball into midfield, where a predictably accurate sequence of passes ensues.
It's certainly an end to end affair so far - but no clearcut chances as of yet. An early stat to keep you on your toes, though: although Swansea are unbeaten in seven, they have drawn five of those games.
The visitors push into the home penalty area for the first time but the Hammers send the ball straight back up the pitch on the break.
Yellow Card Ricardo Vaz Te
Indeed, the culprit - Ricardo Vaz Te has received an early booking for a slightly careless challenge.
A midfield battle for possession has ensued in what has been a lively encounter thus far. Matty Taylor sends the ball long in search of Matt Jarvis, but play is stopped as Wayne Routledge is brought down.
After a couple of minutes of solid Swansea possession, the away side have hardly had a look in and the ball has spent most of its time in their half.
Gerhard Tremmel punches clear from the corner, but the early signs of West Ham pressure are there for all to see.
The hosts have now established a foothold and their first of what will probably be dozens of crosses is whipped in but cleared. Still, the Hammers persisted and now have a corner for their efforts after Kevin Nolan saw his shot deflected wide.
Mohamed Diame gives away a goal kick - but he would probably be forgiven for giving away a penalty at the moment as the home fans will be delighted simply to see him in a Hammers shirt after late January interest from Arsenal.
The hosts are looking for only their second win in 10 matches - and so far they are also looking fruitlessly for possession as the visitors hold on to the ball like they never want to let it go.
And we're off! It's the visitors who kick us off.
The visitors, meanwhile, boast two of the best passers in the Premier League in Leon Britton and Ki Sung Yeung and will be reliant as ever on top scorer Michu. All the action for you in just a few minutes, stay tuned!
There's only a place on the bench for Cole today, however, but Andy Carroll - who a few months ago was a teammate of Cole's at Liverpool instead of the Hammers - gets the nod after recently returning to fitness.
The last time Swansea played at Upton Park was 14 years ago in an FA Cup third round tie, when the Swans were a middling side in what used to be called the third division and West Ham were probing the Premier League’s upper echelons. Making his debut off the bench that day was a spritely, 17-year old Joe Cole.
While the Welsh side's subs today are: Cornell, Dyer, Lamah, Monk, Schechter, Moore, Tiendalli.
And today's Swansea team is: Tremmel, Davies, Williams, Chico, Rangel; Britton, Ki; Routledge, De Guzman, Hernandez; Michu.
The Hammers bench for you: Spiegel, C. Cole, Collison, Pogatetz, J Cole, Chamakh, O'Neill
Here's how the hosts are lining up today: Jaaskelainien; Taylor, O'Brien, Tomkins, Reid; Diame, Noble, Jarvis, Nolan, Vaz Te, Carroll
Upton Park will be buzzing today and I'm sure you at home are too - although the table makes for much sweeter reading at the moment if you are a Swans fan. The Hammers are currently 13th having not won in four (and having conceded 12 in those four). Swansea, however, are unbeaten in seven, sitting pretty in eighth.
Hello and welcome to Goal.com's LIVE! play-by-play coverage of West Ham United vs. Swansea City. I'm Tim Poole and I'll be guiding you through what will no doubt be yet another thrilling episode of Premier League football.
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