Premier League
Hull City 1-0 West Ham United 

Saturday, 28th September 2013
by Trevor Twohig

Another week, another conversation about the referee. What is it about these guys?

Perhaps Big Sam gives them the hump from the off with his hooting and hollering. I don't know but I don't think I have ever seen a softer penalty in my life. 12 minutes gone after a bright West Ham start, Brady goes down like a sack of spuds after the slightest of contact from Joey O Brien, penalty Hull City.

O'Brien was looking at the ball yet Mr. Friend deemed it worthy of a spot kick, in what would prove to be the decisive goal in the match.

Now there has been a lot of doom mongering amongst the West Ham faithful about terrible starts and easy teams played. Also the fact that we have not scored away from home in seven hours, doesn't make pretty reading. However, if you do your homework it is not all doom and gloom.

We had 60% of possession and had two more shots on target than the Tigers. It was a bad time to play Hull as they are riding the crest of a wave at the minute, which a la Blackpool, I can't see lasting forever.

They didn't create anything else really and Bruce's excellent organisation prevented what looked like a certain West Ham goal. Tomkins header was cleared off the line and any other day could have gone in - not to mention in the second half Roland Rat fired wide when really he should have scored.

The final saving grace is that dear Mr. Friend twisted the knife slightly more by not awarding the Hammers a second half penalty. Jake Livermmore stuck his arm out, moved towards the ball, the ball hit his arm, no penalty. It was a blatant one, still no dice for the Irons.

So plenty of reason to feel aggrieved but after mulling the result and performance over, I am not too concerned. Yes we have a tough run, yes we still haven't scored, but we dominated the game and really deserved to win. We have had some atrocious luck and as has been widely documented the make up of the side is not quite right at present.

It was pleasing to see Tomkins back in the line up who didn't put a foot wrong. He provides a far greater aerial threat than any other of our defenders from set pieces and I think he could form a formidable partnership with Reidy at the back for years to come.

Ravel stills looks like a beautiful little dynamo and is causing a fascinating headache for Big Sam as the big boys like Cole and Downing return from injury. It will be interesting to see if he has the cajones to drop Kevin Nolan as I believe he rightly should on recent performances.

Not to mention the fact that he could have very easily been sent off for a two-footed challenge on Leroy Rosenior in the opening ten minutes, his performances have been lacklustre of late.

So I am remaining positive - I could actually see the Irons getting something over at White Hart Lane next week and spoiling their party for once. Lest we not forget despite the disappointing start, we have had injuries and two weeks now of refereeing howlers. Our squad is stronger and more capable than this time last year. Obviously there are the striking issues, but sooner or later the luck has to turn and we find ourselves on the receiving end of some refereeing generosity.

Defoe sent off, Noble penalty, West Ham 1-0 next week? Dare to dream guys..!

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Player Ratings

Jussi Jaaskelainen
Went wrong way for penalty. Otherwise solid.

Joey O Brien
Well played. Desperately unlucky for the penalty.

Razvan Rat
Getting better each week. missed a sitter.

Winston Reid
Very good, as usual.

James Tomkins
Solid and an aerial threat.

Mark Noble
Typically energetic.

Mo Diame
Out of position and struggling.

Matt Jarvis
Not a lot to write home about.

Ravel Morrison
Getting better ever game.

Kevin Nolan
Poor once again. Could have been sent off.

Modibo Maiga
Gettting better - but still little goalscoring threat.


Mladen Petric
Not hugely effective today.

Stewart Downing
Poor. Not one good cross.

Ricardo Vaz Te
Could be worth a start soon.

Did not play.

James Collins
Did not play.

Guy Demel
Did not play.

Matt Taylor
Did not play.

Match Facts

West Ham United: Jussi Jaaskelainen, Joey O Brien, Razvan Rat, Winston Reid, James Tomkins, Mark Noble, Mo Diame, Matt Jarvis, Ravel Morrison, Kevin Nolan, Modibo Maiga.

Goals: None.

Booked: None booked.           .

Sent Off: None sent off.     .

Hull City: .

Subs not used: .

Goals: .

Booked: None booked..

Sent off: None.

Referee: Kevin Friend.

Attendance: 0.

Man of the Match: Ravel Morrison.