Premier League
West Ham United 3 Wigan Athletic 2

Saturday, 24th April 2010
by Gordon Thrower

Never in question was it?! I was convinced that we were going to win this one right from the start. No idea why – sometimes you just get that feeling. Despite the poor showing at Anfield I figured that when the chips were down this was one we were definitely going to win. Probably. As ever though, nothing is ever straightforward in the wild and wacky world of West Ham and it was an “eventful” match that eventually (just about) secured our safety subject to some improbable series of results.



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Player Ratings

Robert Green
Might have come for the first so-called corner that Spector put away. However, the tip onto the bar in the first half, together with the free-kick save in the second were both vitally important.


Julien Faubert
Solid enough but didn't get forward as much as he can do.


Jonathan Spector
Had an absolute 'mare of a first half but, to his credit, he didn't hide and improved as the game progressed.


Matthew Upson
Decent match. Seen geeing everyone up with clenched fists a-plenty throughout the game. Has he finally worked out what that armband is for?


Manuel Da Costa
A bit of an unsung hero in recent weeks ?EUR" this was another no-nonsense run out at a time when that's just what we needed.


Scott Parker
You've read all the papers by now. Yes he was that good ?EUR" the goal just shades the MOTM award from me ?EUR" but it was close.


Mark Noble
The plaudits went to Parker but, given he was nominally out on the left, Noble's performance was nearly as impressive. Looked knackered at the end ?EUR" had every right to.


Radoslav Kovac
A few good tackles, a few good headers. On the spot for the goal but not nearly as good as Upton Girlie would have you believe.


Valon Behrami
Clocked up a few more miles on his quest to circumnavigate the planet in a single season.


Ilan
Started and finished the move for the equaliser and that was it really. Still that goal was so important it kinda overrides everything else.


Carlton Cole
Started well but the change of marker from Caldwell to Bramble reduced his effectiveness. Still provided the all-important equaliser for Ilan. Still not anywhere near as effective as he was before his injury lay-off.



Substitutes

Guillermo Franco
(Replaced Ilan, 71 mins) Here's something you probably won't see mentioned anywhere else. Whilst everyone is (rightly) raving about Parker's finish, Franco's headed pass into the Scotty's path was nothing short of sublime. Gets a bonus mark for that alone.


Fabio Daprela
(Replaced Noble, 90+3 mins) I'm sure he was superb in those two minutes. Damned if I noticed though.


Peter Kurucz
Did not play.


Danny Gabbidon
Did not play.


Junior Stanislas
Did not play.


Alessandro Diamanti
Did not play.


Benni McCarthy
Did not play.



Match Facts

West Ham United: Robert Green, Julien Faubert, Jonathan Spector, Matthew Upson, Manuel Da Costa, Scott Parker, Mark Noble, Radoslav Kovac, Valon Behrami, Ilan, Carlton Cole.

Goals: Ilan 31 Radoslav Kovac 45 Scott Parker 77              .

Booked: Jonathan Spector 58          .

Sent Off: None sent off     .

Wigan Athletic: Kirkland, Bramble, Caldwell, Melchiot, Figueroa, Watson, N'Zogbia, Diame, McCarthy, Rodallega, Moreno.

Subs not used: Stojkovic, Gohouri, Sinclair, Boyce.

Goals: Spector (og 4), Rodallega (52).

Booked: McCarthy (22), Bramble (70).

Sent off: None.

Referee: Alan Wiley.

Attendance: 33,057.

Man of the Match: Scott Parker.