Newcastle United 0 - 1 West Ham United: Home woes deepen for Magpies
WEST Ham manager Sam Allardyce saluted his skipper Kevin Nolan as the pair returned to former club Newcastle and left with a victory.
West Ham United - Nolan (37)
The 30-year-old scored the only goal of the game at St James’ Park as the Magpies turned in another below-par display and succumbed all too tamely.
Allardyce said: “His instincts in the box are there for all to see. It’s five goals in 11 games now in the Premier League – it should be six because he had one chalked off this week (against Manchester City) that he shouldn’t have done – and for a midfield player to be totalling up that sort of goal tally is fantastic.”
Nolan struck from close range, just as he had done so many times in the past for Newcastle, to convert Joey O’Brien’s miscued shot and give the Hammers a 39th-minute lead which they held on to for the remainder of the game.
Jussi Jaaskelainen had to produce fine saves to deny Yohan Cabaye and Hatem Ben Arfa among others, but he was ably supported by his defenders as the Magpies expended plenty of energy but simply could not find the quality they needed to break the visitors down.
By contrast, Nolan and Mohamed Diame repeatedly stretched the home defence and only a good save from Tim Krul denied Andy Carroll his first Hammers goal 18 minutes from time.
The win saw the promoted Hammers climb into sixth place in the Barclays Premier League table, to the delight of Allardyce, whose time as manager at St James’ ended unceremoniously.
He said: “It’s a fantastic start to the season for us now, 11 games, 18 points. It was a very professional performance by the players and nobody was overawed coming here.”
Meanwhile, opposite number Alan Pardew was left to reflect upon yet another poor home performance. Asked if he cut put his finger on the reasons why, he said: “No, I wish I could. I think that’s our 17th game and it’s proving difficult to get any rhythm at home.”
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Monday 20 May 2013
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