Premier League
West Ham United 3 Southampton 1

Saturday, 22nd February 2014
by Gordon Thrower

Former World Heavyweight Champion (when there was only one) Muhammed Ali had a tactic called “rope-a-dope” whereby he'd position himself on the ropes and take punches, the force of which would be absorbed by the ropes rather than by the body. Then, when his opponent was looking tired Ali would come out and flatten him. Which is pretty much what we did to Southampton.

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Player Ratings

For all the hype he had few saves to make. Best of which was a free kick that bounced wickedly in front of him and looked a lot easier than it actually was.

Guy Demel
Basically sound but there were a few worryingly wayward passes that invited pressure.

George McCartney
Went walkabout for their goal but had an otherwise fine game.

James Collins
Ok for much of the game but there were two or three rushes of blood that caused problems.

James Tomkins
Another decent showing ?EUR" despite being harshly penalised by Clattenburg for their goal.

Mark Noble
Good tight match ?EUR" lost the ball a couple of times but invariably won it back.

Matt Taylor
Got through a prodigious amount of work alongside Noble. It was a toss-up between Linda and Taylor for MOTM. Taylor gets it for me. Just.

Matt Jarvis
Some good work down the flank and took the goal well ?EUR" bravely so given the 'keeper's efforts to give him an unplanned vasectomy.

Stewart Downing
Had a hand in two of the three goals. His cross for the third was superb.

Kevin Nolan
His redemption continues in the best possible way. Fine finish for the third and the ball to Jarvis for the first wasn't half bad either.

Carlton Cole
Spent most of the game with arms around his neck so the goal was just reward. Well taken too.


Mo Diame
Bolstered things a bit and was unlucky with the one that hit the bar.

Winston Reid
Had little involvement.

Jussi Jaaskelainen
Did not play.

Pablo Armero
Did not play.

Jack Collison
Did not play.

Joe Cole
Did not play.

Antonio Nocerino
Did not play.

Match Facts

West Ham United: Adrian, Guy Demel, George McCartney, James Collins, James Tomkins, Mark Noble, Matt Taylor, Matt Jarvis, Stewart Downing, Kevin Nolan, Carlton Cole.

Goals: Matt Jarvis 20 Carlton Cole 23 Kevin Nolan 71              .

Booked: None booked.           .

Sent Off: None sent off.     .

Southampton: Artur Boruc, Calum Chambers, Maya Yoshida, Jose Fonte, Luke Shaw, Morgan Schneiderlin, Jack Cork, Jay Rodriguez, Steven Davis, Adam Lallana, Rickie Lambert.

Subs not used: Kelvin Davis, Nathaniel Clyne, Dejan Lovren, Guly Do Prado.

Goals: Yoshida (8).

Booked: None booked..

Sent off: None.

Referee: Mark Clattenburg.

Attendance: 33,148.

Man of the Match: Matt Taylor.