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West Ham Game 2 2014

The 2nd West Ham Utd fixture of the day at The Boleyn Ground produced some fantastic, exciting football. For the Away team it was a job well done all-round as they secured a 4-1 victory but they demonstrated great prowess all over the pitch. The Home team’s performance was in no way deficient however, but they just lacked the clinical finishing touch that the Away team had in their ranks. Solid performances at the back and in goals kept the score down, and both defences were only outdone by some quality finishes and two fantastic Goal of the Season contenders.

Date: Tuesday 13th of May 2014
Venue: The Boleyn Ground
West Ham Utd (Home) vs West Ham Utd (Away)
Game 2
Kick off: 14:00 pm
Match Officials: Dan Richardson, Matt Leary, Peter Munt and Les Broude

The Away side kicked-off the game wearing the White and Blue season 2014 change kit kicking from left to right. However, it was the Home team that raced out of the blocks taking less than 3 mins to find the net. A ball in from the right wing found the run of winger Emanuele Tamburrini on the edge of the box and the No 8 rocketed home a volley from 20 yards that gave his team a thunderous start (1-0).

But less than 10 mins later the Away side responded well with a stunning strike to match Tamburrini’s. After winning an aerial battle at the half-way line No 10 Gary Milbourn took another touch and from 40 yards took an outrageous strike that caught everyone out. The centre mid’s shot dipped perfectly, hitting the underside of the bar and bouncing up into the roof of the net (1-1).

With the scores level neither side wanted to give away a lead before half-time and this showed in the play. A midfield battle ensued, with the central midfielders having most of the possession. As well as this, both sets of defences where astutely marking the attackers as well as holding a line that cut out any opportunities they were trying to create.

Fortunately, the Hammers fans watching soon had something to get excited about as the Home team won a free-kick on the edge of the box down the left side. Goal-scorer Tamburrini stood over the ball waiting to take it and chose to take a low, driven shot across the box hoping for a touch that would’ve taken it in. The No 8’s shot was travelling in; however waiting at the back post was Away No 16 Michael Meany, who did brilliantly to clear the ball off the line, much to the frustration of the Home team.

On the stroke of half-time the Away team took the lead, with Gary Milbourn’s second of the game. The centre mid John Barry whipped the ball in from a corner and it was a great floating ball that was asking to be headed in. As the Home goalie Jamie Whitehead came out to grab the ball, Milbourn was lurking behind him waiting for a loose catch. This is exactly what happened and Milbourn’s instinct paid off as he bundled the ball into the back of the net (1-2). 

The referee brought the half to an end with the game still very much in the balance and with everything to play for. It was a defensive half with some quality performances at the back, only being broken down by some magnificent finishes from Emanuele Tamburrini and Gary Milbourn. However, a defensive error at the end gave the Away team the lead at the break but the Home team needn’t have been disheartened as there was still only a one-goal margin with 45 mins left.

Half Time: West Ham Utd (Home) 1 - 2 West Ham Utd (Away)

At the break, the Away side didn’t get ahead of themselves because of their one-goal lead as they discussed how the Home team had actually played the nicer football in midfield. Although mostly being forced to shoot from distance, the Away team knew their opposition only needed one of these efforts to get a lucky deflection and go in which would level the score. In the Home dressing room the players knew also that the Away team had been chasing shadows at times and that they had been playing very well.

Ten minutes into the second half and the Away team had come closest to scoring, only to be denied by the woodwork. No 9 Perry Crockford made a quick-paced run down the right wing but his chance was deflected up high into the box. The ball bounced over, coming up perfectly to meet the run of winger Luke Hilton who rocketed a volley off the left post.

The Away side sustained the pressure on the Home defence but were continually denied by keeper Jamie Whitehead or their efforts were just wide. Next to try his luck was the No 10 Gary Milbourn, looking for his hat-trick, who cut in from the left wing before taking a dipping effort that fell just shy of the left post.

Again, the Away team were on the attack and had their best opportunity of the half so far when forward, Daniel Hartley, won a penalty against Home full back Campodonico Nicolo. A high cross into the box was flicked up by Hartley as he tried to control it and the ball struck the Home No 16 on the arm resulting in a definite penalty. Hartley stepped up but his low effort was brilliantly saved by the feet of Jamie Whitehead.

Finally, after their hard work in attack, the Away team were rewarded with another goal to show for their efforts. With 75mins gone centre forward Perry Crockford exchanged a one-two with substitute Luke Farmer and the No 15 played a delightful ball into the striker who finished coolly from the left side of the box, hitting it low across the goal into the far corner (1-3).

Up the other end, however, the Home team replied quickly, only to be denied again by goalie David Finn. Winger Lee Waterfall played a clever one-two at the edge of the box with right-back Campodonico Nicolo' and the No 7 found himself in behind the defence. Much to his team’s disappointment, Waterfall’s effort was saved majestically by Finn at the near post, the goalie pushing it up and over the bar.

As the game neared its conclusion, the Away side had another chance to stretch out their lead as winger Andrew Harland won another penalty for his side. Harland was played in at the edge of the box and the No 20 did a delightful turn getting past his marker but was brought down by the Home keeper as he nudged the ball beyond Whitehead. Harland converted the penalty with ease himself, stroking the ball home into the left corner (1-4).

Referee Dan Richardson brought the game to an end, with the Away team finishing as victors. Going into the break they only had a narrow lead but in the 2nd half it was a different story as they controlled play and created chances galore. The midfield duo of John Barry and Gary Milbourn controlled the 2nd half with some lovely passes into the attackers, but as well as this they covered their defence helping them to maintain a cleansheet after the break. The Home team deserve great credit for their excellent efforts, but a superior all-round team performance won the game for the Away team and their win could’ve been even more convincing had it not been for a number of important saves of Home goalie Jamie Whitehead.

Full time: West Ham Utd (Home) 1 - 4 West Ham Utd (Away)

Man of the Match Home: Jamie Whitehead
Man of the Match Away: Gary Milbourn
Moment of the Match: Emanuele Tamburrini

Home Team: Jamie Whitehead, Richard Taylor, Kristien Harrison, Salvatore Communara (C), Terry Rickeard, Lee Waterfall, Emanuele Tamburrini, Ahmed Soliman, Martin Hamilton, Francisco Centeno, Scott Challenger, Massimiliano Vulpani, Campodonico Nicolo’, Trevor Gorman
Home Mascot: Harry Conyer

Away Team: David Finn, Mick Dunne, Daniel Sleeman, Andy Thompson, John Barry
Luke Hilton, Andrew Harland, Perry Crockford, Gary Milbourn, Daniel Hartley (C), Luke Farmer, Michael Meany
Away Mascot: Ruby Thompson