Premier League
Arsenal 0-0 West Ham United 

Saturday, 31st January 2009
by East Stand Martin

We were struck down just as we walked out of the Arsenal tube station. ESM Jnr and I, on the ground. Helpless with laughter as we spotted the gayest t-shirt ever with an airbrushed picture of Robert Pires on it. Little goatee beard, like a still from a gay porno remake of the Three Musketeers. I challenge anyone to wear that shirt without uttering the words “Chase me!”

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Player Ratings

Robert Green
Not much to do really. Confident on crosses and made the one proper save he had to make with little fuss.

Lucas Neill
Given a difficult time by Nasri but stuck to the task well.

Herita Ilunga
Not his normal swashbuckling self going forward but a decent job on the defensive side of things.

James Collins
Superb. Immense in the air and got in block after block after block.

Matthew Upson
One lapse when Adebayor was given a free header in the second half but an otherwise impressive 90 minutes.

Scott Parker
A fine performance in the middle. Simply worked himself into the ground to break things up time after time after time. Glad to see the energy levels have improved from earlier in the season when he was complaining of being knackered halfway through the second half.

Mark Noble
A slightly disappointing run-out. Gave the ball away a few times and, though he did a lot of tracking back, I just had the feeling he can do better.

Jack Collison
Stuck to the task well though circumstances dictated that he didn?EUR(TM)t impose his authority on the game as much as of late.

Valon Behrami

Carlton Cole
Rarely a goalscoring threat, he did however get through a lot of running and, on a day when service was at a premium, that was all you could ask of him really.

David Di Michele
Like Cole he rarely posed the defence any problems but, also like Cole, he go through a hell of a lot of unsung work as we attempted to defend from the front.


Savio Nsereko
(Replaced Noble, 70 mins) A fairly impressive 20 minutes for the lad. Only little but he?EUR(TM)s not afraid to get stuck in and he seems to have a decent turn of pace too.

Luis Boa Morte
(Replaced Di Michele, 83 mins) Given five minutes or so at the end so not really on for long enough to influence proceedings to any significant degree.

Jan Lastuvka
Did not play.

Walter Lopez
Did not play.

Jonathan Spector
Did not play.

Diego Tristan
Did not play.

Fred Sears
Did not play.

Match Facts

West Ham United: Robert Green, Lucas Neill, Herita Ilunga, James Collins, Matthew Upson, Scott Parker, Mark Noble, Jack Collison, Valon Behrami, Carlton Cole, David Di Michele.

Goals: None.

Booked: James Collins 56 Lucas Neill 85        .

Sent off: None.

Arsenal: Almunia, Sagna, Toure, Gallas, Clichy, Eboue, Diaby, Denilson, Nasri, Adebayor, Bendtner.

Subs not used: Fabianski, Ramsey, Djourou, Gibbs.

Goals: .

Booked: Diaby (22), Vela (75).

Sent off: None.

Referee: Steve Bennett.

Attendance: 60,109.

Man of the Match: James Collins.