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Premier League
Saturday, 13th April 2013

Southampton 1
West Ham United 1

by Staff Writer

Andy Carroll's fifth goal of the season was enough to earn West Ham a share of the spoils in today's Premier League clash at Southampton.

The on-loan forward found the back of the net with a 66th minute strike to cancel out Gaston Ramirez's opener, which had put the Saints in front just seven minutes earlier.

Despite going into the game without key players Winston Reid, Mark Noble and Joe Cole, the Hammers were able to secure a second successive away point following their goalless draw at Anfield last weekend.

And despite being subject to a chorus of 'hoof' from the home fans every time they passed the ball further than 20 yards, West Ham ended the first half with 55 per cent possession compares to the hosts' 45; not too shabby for a team apparently unable to resist the temptation to thump the ball 60 yards at every opportunity.

With both sides playing with the freedom afforded by having already 38 points in the Premier League, it was an open first half at St Mary's - although one with very few clear cut chances.

Jussi Jaaskelainen - making his first start since it was confirmed that he had earned a one-year extension to his current contract - made the most important contribution of the half when he somehow managed to prevent Ricky Lambert's 33rd-minute toe-poke from crossing the line.

The England hopeful also went close on the verge of the half-time whistle when he connected with a cross, only to see his header flash wide of Jaaskelainen's goal.

West Ham meanwhile produced little of note ahead of the break with only Ricardo Vaz Te's 30-yard drive causing Saints 'keeper Artur Boruc to react. And whilst Andy Carroll did manage to find the back of the net, referee Mike Dean had penalised him for a foul several seconds earlier.

The breakthrough came following a strong spell for the home side at the beginning of the second half. Ironically perhaps given the home fans' aforementioned chant, a hopeful punt by the Saints 'keeper found its way to Gaston Ramirez.

The Uruguayan somehow evaded the attention of both James Tomkins and James Collins before firing across Jussi Jaaskelainen into the far corner to give the home side a 1-0 lead. However that lead was to last for just seven minutes...

West Ham won a 66th-minute free kick five yards outside the box after the marauding Mo Diame was felled by Jos Hooiveld. A short pass to the hovering Andy Carroll was met by a fierce drive from the England striker, whose shot took a slight deflection before finding the bottom right-hand corner of the net to the delight of the travelling fans behind the goal.

Thereafter either side could have won the game, although it was Southampton's Jay Rodriguez who went closest to finding a winner when his low strike was pushed aside by Jaaskelainen - who was enjoying another excellent afternoon between the sticks - in the third minute of added-on time.

The point ensures West Ham remain in 12th place in the Premier League, behind today's opponents on goal difference but with a game in hand. That comes against the champions-elect Manchester United, who visit the Boleyn Ground this Wedneday evening.

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Player Ratings

Jussi Jaaskelainen
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Guy Demel
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Joey O Brien
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James Collins
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James Tomkins
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Mo Diame
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Gary O Neil
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Ricardo Vaz Te
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Matt Jarvis
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Kevin Nolan
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Andy Carroll
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Jack Collison
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Emanuel Pogatetz
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Matt Taylor
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Stephen Henderson
Did not play.

Danny Potts
Did not play.

Wellington Paulista
Did not play.

Carlton Cole
Did not play.

Match Facts

Referee: Mike Dean.

Attendance: 31,984.

Man of the Match: Andy Carroll.

West Ham United

Jussi Jaaskelainen, Guy Demel, Joey O Brien, James Collins, James Tomkins, Mo Diame, Gary O Neil, Ricardo Vaz Te, Matt Jarvis, Kevin Nolan, Andy Carroll.

Goals: Andy Carroll 66                  .

Booked: None.

Sent off: None.



Substitutes: .

Subs not used: .

Goals: .

Booked: None.

Sent Off: None.

Staff Writer's Man of the Match: Andy Carroll