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Match Report

 

Posted Sat 06 Mar 10 at 23:59 PM

Report: West Ham 1 Bolton 2

Wanderers completed a hat-trick of wins over West Ham in the 2009/10 season with a superb all-round performance at Upton Park.

Kevin Davies nodded his side into an early lead before Jack Wilshere became the youngest player to score in the Premier League this season with a well taken second just five minutes later.

Alessandro Diamanti set up a frantic end to the game by halving the deficit on 87 minutes and there was even time for substitute Junior Stanislas to hit the crossbar deep into stoppage time.

The win, Owen Coyle's first on the road as manager of the club, was made even more impressive by the fact that Bolton had to play the last 20 minutes with ten men after Tamir Cohen was sent-off for two bookable offences.

The three points elevate Wanderers above West Ham into 13th spot in the Premier League table.

With Stuart Holden sidelined for up to six weeks, Tamir Cohen was restored to Wanderers' starting line-up with Johan Elmander keeping his striking berth after notching for Sweden just three days earlier.

But it was his strike partner Kevin Davies who gave Wanderers the perfect start ten minutes into the game - his fifth goal against the Hammers in his last six games.

It was a real swift team move too with Fabrice Muamba winning possession in midfield, Steinsson releasing Chung-Yong down the right and the South Korean delivered an inch perfect cross for the captain who powered a header into the net from six yards out.

Two minutes later and the lead was very nearly doubled as Elmander flicked a header from a Steinsson throw before West Ham responded when Alessandro Diamanti clipped the roof of the net with a free-kick from 25 yards.

But Wanderers didn't have to wait too long to claim their second strike of the afternoon as Jack Wilshere notched his first goal since moving to the Reebok in the January transfer window.

Again it was another superb collective effort as Davies chased down a seemingly lost cause, hooking the ball back from the byline. Tamir Cohen was the recipient inside the penalty area and the Israeli international showed excellent composure to glance the ball into the path of the 18-year-old midfielder.

Finding the net was no easy task with the ball bouncing around, but Wilshere made no mistake with a well executed scissors kick.

And despite now having a firm grasp on the contest, Bolton's pressure didn't relent. Elmander fired into the side-netting causing even more concern for the already frustrated home supporters.

But for a double save from Jussi Jaaskelainen on 24 minutes the lead would have been halved.

Firstly, the Finland stopper blocked another vicious Diamanti set-piece from outside the area before retreating under his crossbar to palm away Guillermo Franco's cross when the ball was pumped back into the danger zone.

After the Whites blistering start, West Ham did begin to play themselves back into the game as the half progressed, without creating many notable opportunities.

The one occasion that they did manage to pierce Bolton's resolute defence, Sam Ricketts made a vital last-ditch tackle to stop Carlton Cole's run on goal after the England international had been released by Scott Parker.

Gianfranco Zola's side continued to press with Zat Knight clearing from his goal-line, but there was no doubt that Elmander should have made it 3-0 in first-half stoppage time when he scuffed Davies' inch perfect cross from just six yards out.

The West Ham manager brought Kieron Dyer into the game just two minutes after the restart and the former Newcastle United midfielder should have scored with his very first touch, but his finish from Cole's headed knock-down was sliced over Jaaskelainen's goal.

Cohen and Wilshere blazed over from outside the area and a penalty shout for handball against Upson fell on deaf ears as Bolton came out and looked for a similar start to the second half as they did in the first.

But it was to be expected that West Ham would offer an improved showing and although Wanderers lost a bit of their shape, they managed to keep their concentration and defend stoutly with Jaaskelainen making several good catches and even and slide tackle on the touchline!

Franco's hopelessly wayward shot on 65 minutes signalled the end of the Mexican's afternoon and with no sign of forcing a way back into the game, the well-travelled Mido was brought on to add more firepower to the Hammers attack.

And there was a further boost for the home team when Tamir Cohen received his marching orders after picking up his second booking off the game for a foul on Scott Parker. Owen Coyle withdrew Johan Elmander and brought on Ricardo Gardner as he looked to shore up the midfield as a consequence.

Wanderers generally coped with the numerical disadvantage but Diamanti set up a frantic final few minutes with a well taken goal on 87 minutes.

The Italian found the back of the net with a curling effort from just inside the box, however it eventually proved nothing more than a consolation.

Davies and Stanislas both hit the wordwork in five pulsating minutes of injury time, but the better team held on as Wanderers made it back-to-back wins for the first time in the league this season.

Bolton: Jaaskelainen, Robinson, Muamba, Elmander (Gardner 75), Knight, Davies, Steinsson, Ricketts, Cohen, Chung-Yong, Wilshere (Taylor 78) (Subs: Al Habsi, Riga, Klasnic, O'Brien, Weiss)

West Ham: Green, Parker, Franco (Mido 66), Cole, Kovac (Stanislas 77), Upson, Spector, Faubert (Dyer 48), Behrami, Tomkins, Diamanti (Subs: Stech, Ilan, Da Costa, Daprella)

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