FA Premiership
Arsenal 2-0 West Ham United 

Tuesday, 1st January 2008
by Gordon Thrower

Quiet ‘ere innit! This was my inaugural visit to their new ground. Last season’s plans to celebrate my birthday weekend with three points had been thwarted by the fact that I was stuck at home with my leg up in the air in plaster following the bionic operation that made me the £6,000 man. So I was looking forward to visiting a new ground just to see if all the tales of how quiet it was were true. They are.

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Player Ratings

Robert Green
Strangely he was barely tested, though he was a bit too eager to come off his line for the flukey second.

Lucas Neill
A lot of hard work defensively but was too eager to lump it in the general direction of anywhere when sometimes there was a more considered pass available.

George McCartney

Anton Ferdinand
After an uncertain start he recovered to have a decent game at the back, once he?EUR(TM)d started to concentrate on defending.

Matthew Upson
Not as assured as of late ?EUR" probably a function of having to cope with yet another change of partner at the back. Caught out for the first goal especially.

Hayden Mullins
Did his usual job but tended to drop too deep for my liking.

Jonathan Spector
Worked hard but failed to make much use of what little ball he got.

Mark Noble
Tons of running and got a lot of tackles in. Ridiculously booked with seconds to go.

Freddie Ljungberg
Was looking better than of late until injury intervened.

John Paintsil
Worked hard and was unlucky with the overhead kick. Cult hero status gave the crowd something to sing about.

Carlton Cole
I felt quite sorry for him. Playing a lone striker works well only if the midfield support the striker. This happened to a certain extent in the first half but hardly at all in the second. Tried his heart out though.


Jack Collison
(replaced Ljungberg, 37) Promising start. Though he was a little profligate with the ball from time to time he didn?EUR(TM)t hide at all.

Dean Ashton
(replaced Cole, 71) Still not right. Needs to be more up for a chase to close down defenders ?EUR" it seems to be more of an afterthought at the moment by which time the ball is long gone.

Henri Camara
(replaced Mullins, 77) No meaningful contribution in the fifteen minutes or so he was on.

Richard Wright
Did not play.

James Tomkins
Did not play.

Match Facts

West Ham United: Robert Green, Lucas Neill, George McCartney, Anton Ferdinand, Matthew Upson, Hayden Mullins, Jonathan Spector, Mark Noble, Freddie Ljungberg, John Paintsil, Carlton Cole.

Goals: None.

Booked: arlton Cole 23 George McCartney 63 Mark Noble 93      .

Sent Off: None sent off.     .

Arsenal: Almunia, Hoyte, Toure, Gallas, Clichy, Eboue, Fabregas, Flamini, Rosicky, Eduardo, Adebayor.

Subs not used: Lehmann, Song.

Goals: Eduardo (2), Adebayor (18).

Booked: None.

Sent off: None.

Referee: C.Foy.

Attendance: 60,102.

Man of the Match: Mark Noble.