Premiership
West Ham United 2 Newcastle United 2

Saturday, 26th April 2008
by Gordon Thrower

At last some sunshine - both on and off the pitch. I’ve spent all season freezing my backside off getting drenched, snowed on and shivering my way around various grounds up and down the country so a weather forecast that contained the words “dry, warm and sunny” without also containing the word “Tenerife” was a most welcome addition to the morning paper.



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Player Ratings

Robert Green
No chance with either of the goals and not tested for much of the match. Fine save at the end from Martins.


John Paintsil
Decent run out at right-back though his distribution left a bit to be desired. I?EUR(TM)m still not convinced that he has what it takes long-term.


George McCartney
Fine match. Strong at the back and a constant danger going forward.


Lucas Neill
Worked well with Tomkins and kept both Owen and Viduka pretty quiet.


James Tomkins
Got slightly the wrong side of Martins for the first goal but this was one of the few blips in an otherwise fairly assured performance.


Mark Noble
Works well alongside Parker and this would appear to be the boss?EUR(TM)s preferred middle pairing. Lots of hard work and took the goal well.


Scott Parker



Freddie Ljungberg
Was looking lively before his untimely exit.


Julien Faubert
Continues to improve. Needs a bit of work on his crossing though.


Bobby Zamora
Had a decent first half but failed to carry that form over into the second period.


Dean Ashton
Always looked dangerous and was perhaps unlucky not to add to his goal.



Substitutes

Luis Boa Morte
(replaced Ljungberg, 21) Appeared to respond to the encouragement of the previously silent majority, especially in the first half. A quieter second half.


Carlton Cole
(replaced Zamora, 68) Not bad ?EUR" some nice link-up play in the second half.


Nobby Solano
(replaced Ljungberg, 90+4) Barely put a foot wrong in the 30 seconds or so he was on the pitch. Really not on long enough to register but the boss needs a mark for his database!


Jimmy Walker
Did not play.


Hayden Mullins
Did not play.



Match Facts

West Ham United: Robert Green, John Paintsil, George McCartney, Lucas Neill, James Tomkins, Mark Noble, Scott Parker, Freddie Ljungberg, Julien Faubert, Bobby Zamora, Dean Ashton.

Goals: Mark Noble 10 Dean Ashton 23                .

Booked: Julien Faubert 55 John Paintsil 57        .

Sent off: None.

Newcastle United: Harper, Beye, Enrique, Edgar, Taylor, Butt, Geremi, Barton, Martins, Owen, Viduka.

Subs not used: Carroll, Forster, Duff.

Goals: Martins (42), Geremi (45+2).

Booked: Bebe (41), Butt (57), Martins (72).

Sent off: None.

Referee: U.Rennie.

Attendance: 34,980.

Man of the Match: George McCartney.