You are viewing the content for Tuesday 14 February 2006

Hammers in seventh heaven

Ron Greenwood tribute

West Ham 3 Birmingham 0
By Adrian Curtis
IT was a night when some of West Ham’s former heroes turned up to pay tribute to the late Ron Greenwood.

So it was perhaps fitting that Alan Pardew’s side moved into the top six of the Premiership.

The former West Ham and England manager passed away after a long illness last week but would surely have approved of the way the Hammers claimed their seventh straight victory.

A goal in each half from Marlon Harewood and another from Dean Ashton ensured they overtook Wigan and Bolton surpassed the 40-point mark which so many managers view as the benchmark for safety in the top flight.

After the game, Hammers boss Alan Pardew praised his players but urged them to maintain their momentum for the remainder of the season.

"Whatever anyone says now, it’s been a good season," Pardew said. "There are a number of Premiership teams who have got into this position and fallen away - we have to make sure that doesn’t happen to us."

The home side set about lowly City with a fire and tenacity that had the visitors struggling to keep pace.

City had been at the centre of a pre-match controversy surrounding midfielder Nicky Butt when the midfielder was alleged to have stormed off after learning his services were not required.

West Ham’s pressure paid off when they took the lead in the 10th minute, Harewood firing home after Birmingham’s defence failed to deal with a loose ball on the edge of the penalty area.

Three minutes later an error by Alex Bruce almost allowed Hayden Mullins to grab a second but the City defender regained possession as Mullins prepared to shoot.

West Ham continued to push forward and Danny Gabbidon should have done better with a free header from six yards when he was picked out by a cross from Matthew Etherington.

A minute before half time Jiri Jarosik tried to outfox Shaka Hislop with a 25-yard low drive but the West Ham goalkeeper had the ball covered.

The home side, clearly mindful of the lacklustre way they had finished the opening 45 minutes, upped the pace from the restart.

Etherington sent an angled 20-yard drive flashing past Taylor’s left-hand upright in the 47th minute.

City wasted a fine chance to equalise in the 57th minute when Chris Sutton found Mikael Forssell in space with a neat header but he failed to connect with the ball.

The miss seamed to re-ignite the home side’s desire and substitute Christian Dailly forced Taylor into a fine save with a powerful drive on the hour.

Their renewed vigour brought them a second goal in the 62nd minute when Martin Latka handled in the penalty area.

Harewood’s initial penalty was well saved but the striker reacted first to slip home the rebound.

In the 65th minute, Ashton made it three when a cross from full-back Lionel Scaloni evaded City’s defence and the West Ham striker nodded home at the far post for his second goal in as many starts since his £7 million (€10.2m) move from Norwich.

WEST HAM: Hislop, Scaloni, Ferdinand, Gabbidon, Konchesky, Benayoun, Mullins (Dailly 46), Reo-Coker, Etherington (Katan 77), Ashton (Zamora 77), Harewood.

BIRMINGHAM: Maik Taylor, Melchiot, Cunningham, Latka (Clapham 71), Gray, Pennant, Bruce, Clemence, Jarosik (Painter 71), Sutton, Forssell (Campbell 67).

Referee: D Gallagher (Oxfordshire).

 

Hammers in seventh heaven

Ron Greenwood tribute

West Ham 3 Birmingham 0
By Adrian Curtis
IT was a night when some of West Ham’s former heroes turned up to pay tribute to the late Ron Greenwood.

So it was perhaps fitting that Alan Pardew’s side moved into the top six of the Premiership.

The former West Ham and England manager passed away after a long illness last week but would surely have approved of the way the Hammers claimed their seventh straight victory.

A goal in each half from Marlon Harewood and another from Dean Ashton ensured they overtook Wigan and Bolton surpassed the 40-point mark which so many managers view as the benchmark for safety in the top flight.

After the game, Hammers boss Alan Pardew praised his players but urged them to maintain their momentum for the remainder of the season.

"Whatever anyone says now, it’s been a good season," Pardew said. "There are a number of Premiership teams who have got into this position and fallen away - we have to make sure that doesn’t happen to us."

The home side set about lowly City with a fire and tenacity that had the visitors struggling to keep pace.

City had been at the centre of a pre-match controversy surrounding midfielder Nicky Butt when the midfielder was alleged to have stormed off after learning his services were not required.

West Ham’s pressure paid off when they took the lead in the 10th minute, Harewood firing home after Birmingham’s defence failed to deal with a loose ball on the edge of the penalty area.

Three minutes later an error by Alex Bruce almost allowed Hayden Mullins to grab a second but the City defender regained possession as Mullins prepared to shoot.

West Ham continued to push forward and Danny Gabbidon should have done better with a free header from six yards when he was picked out by a cross from Matthew Etherington.

A minute before half time Jiri Jarosik tried to outfox Shaka Hislop with a 25-yard low drive but the West Ham goalkeeper had the ball covered.

The home side, clearly mindful of the lacklustre way they had finished the opening 45 minutes, upped the pace from the restart.

Etherington sent an angled 20-yard drive flashing past Taylor’s left-hand upright in the 47th minute.

City wasted a fine chance to equalise in the 57th minute when Chris Sutton found Mikael Forssell in space with a neat header but he failed to connect with the ball.

The miss seamed to re-ignite the home side’s desire and substitute Christian Dailly forced Taylor into a fine save with a powerful drive on the hour.

Their renewed vigour brought them a second goal in the 62nd minute when Martin Latka handled in the penalty area.

Harewood’s initial penalty was well saved but the striker reacted first to slip home the rebound.

In the 65th minute, Ashton made it three when a cross from full-back Lionel Scaloni evaded City’s defence and the West Ham striker nodded home at the far post for his second goal in as many starts since his £7 million (€10.2m) move from Norwich.

WEST HAM: Hislop, Scaloni, Ferdinand, Gabbidon, Konchesky, Benayoun, Mullins (Dailly 46), Reo-Coker, Etherington (Katan 77), Ashton (Zamora 77), Harewood.

BIRMINGHAM: Maik Taylor, Melchiot, Cunningham, Latka (Clapham 71), Gray, Pennant, Bruce, Clemence, Jarosik (Painter 71), Sutton, Forssell (Campbell 67).

Referee: D Gallagher (Oxfordshire).