Filed: Saturday, 1st January 2011
By: Staff Writer
West Ham are out of the bottom three for the first time in four months after defeating Wolves 2-0 at the Boleyn Ground this afternoon.
An own goal from Ronald Zubar and Freddie Sears' first goal in almost three years lifted the Irons out of the relegation zone and up into 15th spot in tonight's Premier League.
Although the performance was far from inspiring, with the visitors enjoying more attempts on goal (both on and off target), the win gives Avram Grant's side a total of eight points from their four-game Christmas programme - a priceless haul as United seek to become only the second team to be bottom at Christmas and avoid the drop.
Following a fairly stale first half in which both sides cancelled each other out, United took the lead with a second own goal at the Boleyn inside a week.
Tony Hibbert put the Hammers ahead when Everton visited the Boleyn last Tuesday; this time it was the turn of Wolves' Zubar who turned Frederic Piquionne's 51st minute cross into his own net after its intended recipient, Carlton Cole, had completely midjudged the ball's flight.
A nervy half-hour then ensued, during which both sides hit the woodwork before Freddie Sears - whose last goal came on his Premier League debut againt Blackburn in 2008 - sealed the victory for West Ham.
Tal Ben Haim, playing on the right side of defence today crossed from out wide towards Sears. The recently-recalled striker cooly dispatched the on-loan defender's cross from ten yards to put the game beyond doubt; the relief on Sears' face was clear for all to see.
Whilst the game may not have exactly been one for the purists, all that matters now is the three points that temporarily, at least, lift the Hammers out of the danger zone (even if all surrounding teams have games in hand).
Next up for Grant and his in-form side is the trip to Newcastle on Wednesday.
Premier League: current standings
11 Blackburn Rovers -8 25
12 Newcastle United -3 22
13 Everton -3 22
14 West Bromwich Albion -10 22
15 West Ham United -11 20
16 Aston Villa -14 20
17 Wigan Athletic -14 20
18 Birmingham City -3 19
19 Fulham -5 19
20 Wolverhampton Wanderers -14 18
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Wolves star seeking West Ham move [5th Jun 2016]
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Gone! Lyall gates removed [14th Mar 2016]
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11:48PM 1st Jan 2011
''A predictable win over Wolves who are worse than the hapless Hammers away from home.''
by g portugal
07:56PM 1st Jan 2011
''Great result, though we still look too vulnerable from corners.''