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West Ham United
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October 27, 2013
• Liberty Stadium, Swansea
Referee: P. Dowd
• Attendance: 20455
West Ham United
It ends all square at the Liberty Stadium between Swansea City and West Ham United. Sam Allardyce has masterminded another clean sheet on the road for the Londoners. Swansea huffed and puffed but couldn't blow down the visitor's defensive wall. Jussi Jaaskelainen, Winston Reid and James Tomkins will get a pat on the back for their displays. Laudrup will have some stern words reserved for the Welsh side. Despite some heavy rotation, they were well off the pace after their Europa League excursions.
FULL-TIME: Swansea City 0-0 West Ham United
90' + 3'
PENALTY SHOUT! Dyer slams the ball at Cole inside the box and pleads with referee Phil Dowd for a spot kick. The man in charge is having none of it though.
90' + 2'
West Ham are in no rush to get on with a set-piece. They won't give this away now. This has been a disciplined, organised and effective display from the visitors. Sam Allardyce deserves great credit. With a potent forward, they might have even won this.
A loud cheer of encouragement rings around the Liberty Stadium as the board signals four minutes of additional time.
Stewart Downing is casual on the right wing as he thinks he is settling for a throw in. He looks gobsmacked when the linesman flags for a Swansea throw! West Ham survive the danger, much to Downing's relief.
Yellow Card Joe Cole
Noble carries the ball forward with a surging run from midfield, he crosses into the box but Joe Cole's swinging shot is well blocked by Angel Rangel. West Ham could snatch this on the break and complete a flawless away performance.
Michu is fed through on goal by Leon Britton but the flag goes up for offside. It was a really tight decision, but Jaaskelainen made another great save regardless. The veteran goalkeeper and his two centre-backs have been immense.
Great defending from Tomkins again to nip in ahead of Bony as he tried to combine with Michu in the final third. Carlton Cole and Chico are embroiled in an off-the-ball incident. Allardyce looks amused.
Chico forrays on to the right wing and somehow wins his side a corner with a deflected shot. Swansea are throwing the kitchen sink at their opponents but the corner is wastefully overhit.
West Ham are camped right back in their own half. They are inviting pressure from the hosts. They look confident in their ability to shut the Swans out.
Joe Cole is going to come on for Ravel Morisson to make his 350th Premier League appearance. Coincidently, he also made his first ever West Ham appearance in an FA Cup tie against Swansea.
Great defending from Tomkins. De Guzman's free kick crossed into the box looked like it was about to drop on Bony's head but the West Ham defender did really well to intervene and save his team. Defending like that is as good as a goal.
West Ham are trying to play some keep ball now to take the impetus out of Swansea's attack. Bony goes in hard and late on Jaaskelainen as the Hammers almost gave it away under pressure.
GREAT SAVE! A Swansea corner falls kindly for Wilfried Bony in the box, the substitute fires a shot at goal from close range but Jaaskelainen does brilliantly to react and push the ball away from danger. Still got it, the Finnish stopper.
More confusion with Vorm and his defenders. There is a lack of communication it seems as Williams and the Dutchman almost take each other out going for the same ball.
The corner is easily defended by the hosts though. Looks like Allardyce is going in for the kill with the introduction of Carlton Cole.
Rat launches a long throw into the box and Carlton Cole is there to flick it on with his first touch of the match. Chico slices the ball out for a corner...
Yellow Card Ángel Rangel
Carlton Cole comes on for West Ham, his first appearance since re-signing for the club earlier this month. A goal from him would complete a great narrative...
Morrison searches for an opening in the box but Chico defends well, as he has all afternoon. Vasquez has a long-range shot moments later, but it's high, wide and not at all handsome.
CLOSE! Reid makes Vorm's life difficult from a corner by standing right in front of him, allowing Noble to have a strike at goal from the cross but the midfielder can't find a gap in the wall of bodies in front of him.
Rangel casually nods the ball back to Vorm and the goalkeeper has to scramble to the byline to prevent a needless corner.
West Ham squeezing Swansea back to the halfway line. The home side are going to have to be patient if they are to score this afternoon. At the moment they are finding it incredibly difficult to manufacture chances.
CHANCE! Nathan Dyer does brilliantly to lose his man and create space for a cross. He delivers one low and hard for Vasquez but it has too much on it and despite the striker's best efforts, it flies away for a throw.
That promise of improvement may have been premature. There isn't any tempo to the home side's passing, the midfielders are taking far too many touches on the ball. West Ham, again, are looking reasonably comfortable.
Almost a chance for Swansea early in this second period but Vasquez fails to control the ball when he is fed through and it comes to nothing. Early signs of improvement though.
West Ham take the kick-off and we are underway in the second half. Let's hope for some goals!
The teams are slowly making their way out for the second period. Let's see if Swansea can find some penetration, otherwise West Ham could be on their way to successive away wins in the Premier League for the first time since December 2007.
Surprising statistic which sums up the story of the first half. West Ham managed 11 shots in that 45 minutes, compared to the home team's total of two (via Opta).
Sam Allardyce will definitely be the happier of the two managers at half-time. His strikerless West Ham side have dealt with the limited threat Swansea have posed well and have had the better of the chances. Downing and Nolan have come closest without success. Michael Laudrup needs to inspire his team to improve in the second period. They have not been their usual selves.
HALF-TIME: Swansea City 0-0 West Ham United
45' + 1'
CHANCE! Ravel Morrison does brilliantly to get to the byline and cross into the box but Kevin Nolan can't quite connect cleanly with his header and it goes flying over the bar!
Two minutes will be added on at the end of the half.
Routledge gets back to help out Taylor. Despite his best intentions all he's done is make matters worse as he concedes a free kick near the corner flag. Swansea are not at the races, the referee's whistle couldn't come sooner.
Yellow Card Ravel Morrison
It's all gone a bit flat at the Liberty Stadium now, West Ham are in the ascendancy. Michael Laudrup will be happy to take this into half-time at 0-0. Sam Allardyce, on the other hand, will be smelling a goal.
Diame breaks down the right and he makes his way into the box. Swansea hammer clear for a throw though. West Ham are coming on strong late in this half. This hasn't been the flowing stuff we usually associate with Swansea.
Matthew Jarvis replaces Vaz Te who has been forced off by a wrist injury. Routledge tries to create an opening down the left wing but Demel comes across to avert the danger.
Ricardo Vaz Te
Dyer tries to launch a crossfield ball out to Routledge on the other flank. It's slightly over-hit and the skiddy turf doesn't help the latter's pursuit as it bounces over the touchline. Meanwhile, Ricardo Vaz Te is receiving treatment for an injury on the sideline.
Vorm is not having the best of spells at present. He flaps at the third corner in as many minutes but gets away with it. Very shakey from the Swansea man at present, West Ham may look to capitalise.
CHANCE! Guy Demel has another chance from a corner but he heads over from close range. Should have done a lot better. Sam Allaradyce has his head in his hands.
Yellow Card Guy Demel
CLOSE! Rangel clears off the line after Vorm makes a complete mess of a routine ball into the box. Almost a catastrophe for the Dutchman in goal for Swansea.
The rain has now stopped, the clouds have parted and the sun has come out. West Ham meanwhile have weathered the storm, pardon the pub, and are attempting to get on the front foot themselves.
It's safe to say this match is being played among a torrential downpour. It should benefit Swansea's slick passing style, if anything.
CHANCE! First flowing move from the hosts. Williams gets involved from the back and combines well with Routledge. Swansea get a corner from it but Chico's header which follows it is way off the mark. That's got the crowd going a bit.
CHANCE! Routledge swings a right-footed cross into the box from the left flank with the outside of his boot but Vazquez's diving header is saved easily by Jaaskelainen.
Sam Allardyce will be delighted with the start his side have made. Swansea, usually so good on the ball, are being made to look decidedly average by the Hammers. Still a long way to go, of course.
Winston Reid goes in hard on Alvaro Vasquez to give a free kick away in his own half. Michu looks likely to swing the ball into the penalty area from the set-piece before taking it short. Swansea's momentum is lost when Routledge loses out to Demel.
CLOSE! Stewart Downing cuts inside on his left foot from the right flank but Michel Vorm manages to make the save from the Englishman's effort. The resulting corner is hit towards Demel but the defender miscues his effort from close range.
Because West Ham are sitting deep in their own half, Swansea have uncharacteristically hit a couple of long diagonal balls over the the defence already. Easily dealt with by the visitors though.
Guy Demel bursts forward down the right-hand side. He falls to the floor under a challenge but the linesman, close at hand, keeps his flag rooted to his side.
West Ham enjoy an early spell of possession against Michael Laudrup's side with Stewart Downing offering a lots of width over on the right flank. This is a promising start from the visitors.
Swansea take the kick-off and we are underway!
Both teams are emerging from the tunnel, kick-off at the Liberty Stadium is moments away...
Ahead of the game, Sam Allardyce has moved to disspell rumours that Andy Carroll is close to a return from his injury woes, saying: "The stories that Andy Carroll is returning to us this week are not true. There is still a while to go there. He'll be back we hope in the next two to three weeks. Hopefully he can start full training when he does come back. It's always been a week-by-week assessment."
Meanwhile Swansea manager Michael Laudrup makes save changes from the team that played in the Europa League on Thursday. Most of those are rotational, but the return of Ashley Williams from injury is a massive boost for the Swans.
Back to the team news; West Ham are unchanged from the home defeat to Manchester City last weekend. Carlton Cole earns a place on the bench and could feature at some point this afternoon.
So looks like we may be in for a draw if those last two tidbits are anything to go by. However, it should be a goalfest - there have been more goals scored at the Liberty Stadium this season (16) than at any other Premier League ground.
Not as surprising, but fascinating nonetheless, West Ham have not won back-to-back Premier League away games since December 2007.
Here's a surprising statistic for you ahead of the 16.00 BST kick-off; Swansea City will be looking to win successive Premier League games for the first time since December 1st 2012!
West Ham: Jaaskelainen; Demel, Reid, Tomkins, Rat; Morrison, Noble, Nolan, Diame, Downing; Vaz Te. Subs: Adrian, Jarvis, Maiga, Taylor, O'Brien, C.Cole, J.Cole.
Swansea: Vorm; Rangel, Chico, Williams, Taylor; Britton, De Guzman; Michu, Dyer, Routledge; Vazquez. Subs: Tremmel, Tiendalli, Amat, Canas, Pozuelo, Hernandez, Bony.
First up, here are today's teams...
Good afternoon ladies and gents! Welcome to play-by-play coverage of Swansea City v West Ham United from the Liberty Stadium LIVE!
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