Premier League
Bolton Wanderers 2 West Ham United 1

Saturday, 21st February 2009
by John Simkin

It could be argued that fans of West Ham will only be convinced that we are on the right track when we manage to win at Bolton. So far we have never won at the Reebok Stadium and have only beaten Bolton away on one occasion in fifty years. Our last victory was at Burnden Park when Tony Cottee was on the score-sheet. As we were unbeaten away from home since October, and Bolton had only won once in seven games, this seemed to be the game that was going to change the record books.



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Player Ratings

Robert Green
At fault for the first goal and had little to do after we went 2-0 down.


Jonathan Spector
Far more assured that Neill and provided Parker with an excellent pass for the goal.


Herita Ilunga
Couple of good attacking runs but was caught out of position for the second goal.


James Collins
Was taken off after only 15 minutes so it is unfair to give him a rating.


Matthew Upson
Bruising battle with Kevin Davies.


Scott Parker
Probably his best game for the club. A captain who leads from the front, he totally controlled the midfield. We all know what a great defensive player Parker is but against Bolton he also passed the ball well.


Mark Noble
A return to form and a great pass to set-up Di Michele in the 39th minute. However, his decision to pass when put through by Cole was inexplicable.


Valon Behrami
Spector did not need the kind of protection usually provided for Neill. Fairly quiet game and did not look like he had fully recovered from his injury.


Jack Collison
Seemed to lose his confidence after giving away the free-kick that led to the first-goal.


Carlton Cole
An impressive performance considering he did not train all week. Unfortunately, all the good chances fell to his fellow striker.


David Di Michele
Missed the best two chances of the game. He rejected the easy options in order to show off the skills that he has apparently lost.



Substitutes

James Tomkins
(Replaced Collins, 16 mins) Never looked in trouble after coming on for the injured Collins. I am sure he will become a regular first-team player next season.


Savio Nsereko
(Replaced Collison, 62 mins) Couple of nice touches but it is not easy to come on and make an impact. Would like to see what he can do when he starts a game.


Fred Sears
(Replaced Spector, 85 mins) Sears must be feeling terribly frustrated by the way he is being treated by Zola. At the moment he is not being given a fair chance to show what he can do.


Jan Lastuvka
Did not play.


Walter Lopez
Did not play.


Radoslav Kovac
Did not play.


Diego Tristan
Did not play.



Match Facts

West Ham United: Robert Green, Jonathan Spector, Herita Ilunga, James Collins, Matthew Upson, Scott Parker, Mark Noble, Valon Behrami, Jack Collison, Carlton Cole, David Di Michele.

Goals: Scott Parker 66                  .

Booked: Matthew Upson 23 Mark Noble 55        .

Sent off: None.

Bolton Wanderers: Jaaskelainen, Steinsson, Cahill, Puygrenier, Gardner, Samuel, McCann, M.Davies, Taylor, K.Davies, Elmander.

Subs not used: Al Habsi, Shittu, Smolarek, Makukula, Basham.

Goals: Taylor (10), Davies (11).

Booked: None.

Sent off: None.

Referee: Steve Tanner.

Attendance: 21,245.

Man of the Match: Scott Parker.