Goals in each half from Yakubu and Andy Johnson dash home hopes
West Ham United 0-2 Everton
For the second time in four days, Everton left the Boleyn Ground victorious
as West Ham United again came unstuck against the Toffees.
Despite having the lion's share of the contest, Alan Curbishley's side paid
the price for failing to make their early supremacy count, as Yakubu struck
his eleventh goal of the season on the stroke of half-time. His replacement
Andrew Johnson sealed the win with virtually the last kick.
Following Wednesday evening's heartbreaking, last-gasp, Carling Cup exit at
the hands of the Merseysiders, Alan Curbishley had made two changes as James
Collins came in for fellow Welshman, Danny Gabbidon (groin), while the
previously cup-tied Nolberto Solano returned in place of Luis Boa Morte
With Freddie Ljungberg moving over to the left flank, Solano took up his
familiar right-wing spot and with just two minutes on the clock, the
Peruvian quickly swung in an awkward corner that Tim Howard gratefully pawed
out from under his crossbar.
Scott Parker also raced away but failed to find the supporting Carlton Cole,
while Dean Ashton bundled wide, before forcing the Everton keeper to dive on
to his low cross into the danger zone.
On the quarter-hour mark, West Ham United cut incisively through the crisp
East End chill but when Solano topped the free-flowing move with an
inch-perfect pass to Ljungberg, the Swede, just eight-yards out, was
thwarted by the relieved Howard, who retrieved the point-blank shot at the
Forcing the early pace - and with just one defeat in their previous seven
Premier League outings - tenth-placed West Ham United had every right to
fancy their chances of exacting swift revenge over an Everton side that had
extended their unbeaten run to eleven matches in all competitions on
Having now seen his side - in seventh spot - progress to both the final four
of the competition and last 32 of the UEFA Cup, there had been little
surprise when David Moyes returned to the East End with an unchanged side.
Although Leon Osman volleyed wide and ten-goal Yakubu saw his ambitious
35-yarder charged down, the home side were well on top and midway through
half, the airborne Ashton almost warmed the claret and blue fans amongst the
34,430 crowd, when he hooked the ball over the advancing Howard only to see
his 15-yarder agonisingly bounce inches off-target.
Five minutes before the break, another fine move that had started from
Robert Green's throw-out climaxed with the ghosting Scott Parker getting in
front of Lee Carsley to nod the ball into the side-netting.
By now, the opening half looked destined to end goalless but, with just
seconds remaining, the hitherto anonymous Yakubu stunned the Boleyn Ground
when he nodded Everton into an interval lead, after Mikel Arteta centred
from the left-hand side of the penalty area to the far post, where Tim
Cahill headed back across goal for the stooping Nigerian to net for the
fifth time in three games from six yards.
That strike changed the context of both half-time team talks, with
Curbishley replacing Carlton Cole with Henri Camara for the restart. After
Lee Carsley saw his scorching 35-yard shot bravely diverted to safety by
Matthew Upson, Mark Noble replaced Solano for the final half-hour.
Within seconds of the Peruvian's departure, Hayden Mullins topped off a mazy
run with a low 15-yarder that thudded into the boards, and after the
escaping Cahill lifted the ball over Green, Collins and the crossbar, Yobo
slid in to turn Camara's dangerous low cross behind.
With a quarter-hour remaining, Steven Pienaar's centre was met by Yakubu,
but the alert Green was equal to the well-directed header and he turned the
ball aside to deny his nemesis a second, before tipping over another rising,
Carsley screamer. That was the cue for Curbishley to make one final switch
as Kyel Reid replaced the hard-working Mullins but that third and final
substitution still could not make any difference as West Ham launched a late
Three minutes into stoppage time, Johnson who had just replaced Yakubu raced
clear on to Phil Neville's long-range clearance and sealed victory with a
clinical lob over the stranded Green.
West Ham United: Green, Neill (c), Collins, Upson, McCartney, Solano (Noble
60), Mullins (Reid 80), Parker, Ljungberg, Ashton, Cole (Camara 46)
Subs: Wright, Spector
Everton: Howard, Neville (c), Jagielka, Yobo, Lescott, Arteta, Osman,
Carsley, Pienaar, Cahill, Yakubu (Johnson 87)
Subs: Wessels, Hibbert, Gravesen, McFadden
Curbishley cannot fault effort - WHUFC
The West Ham United manager had full praise for the commitment shown on
Alan Curbishley was left with much to ponder after his West Ham United side
more than matched an Everton team who have now gone 12 games unbeaten.
In all eight league games this season when Curbishley's men have scored
first they have always come away with at least a point. As such, the opening
strike was likely to prove decisive on Saturday against a resilient in-form
side like Everton - as it also did in the 2-1 midweek defeat by the same
opponents in the Carling Cup quarter-finals.
Speaking after the 2-0 league reverse, Curbishley said: "We started off well
like we did on Wednesday night, had a couple of glorious chances and
obviously didn't take them or the keeper saved it. To be honest, I don't
know if Everton will agree but they have had two tough games in the space of
four days and they will be delighted they have come out on top in both
"It is a tough result to take. I think we have matched Everton in most
departments. You need to score first and we had two great chances for that
to happen." While Freddie Ljungberg and Dean Ashton were both unlucky not to
register following splendid approach play, Curbishley could also find no
fault with the commitment of his players - some of whom were still trying to
find their fitness in the first team.
Having had a fairly settled side of late up to last Sunday's 1-0 win at
Blackburn Rovers, the manager has found himself again losing some key
players at key moments. The contrast with Everton, who fielded 15 of the 16
men that were involved in midweek, could not be greater but Curbishley
added. "We just have to get on with it - when they all come back, I will
have more headaches than I have got now."
The manager added that "I can't ask anymore with the way they are working"
and few at the Boleyn Ground could fault some of the attacking play shown in
Saturday's first half - at least until Yakubu's goal on the stroke of
half-time. "I was delighted with the first half up to the 44th minute," he
said. "I think the way they played - it was a very even game."
WIth Danny Gabbidon ruled out through injury, Carlton Cole went off with a
hip complaint before Andrew Johnson sealed the away win but there were
positives with the returning James Collins and Scott Parker both getting a
valuable 90 minutes. Anton Ferdinand is also due to resume full training
this week and the manager refuses to be downbeat, especially as the club are
secure in mid-table and with every chance of finishing the year looking
upwards rather than down.
A trip to the Middlesbrough on Saturday is fast approaching and Curbishley
has no doubt his team have every chance of maintaining their outstanding
away form. "I can assure everybody that we will be going to Middlesbrough
and we will pick it up again," he said before adding. "I have said all along
- the players that have been playing have been fantastic. We got a result up
at Blackburn last week and if we had come out of this even I don't think
Everton would have argued too much."
McCartney rues missed chances - WHUFC
Left-back George McCartney said Saturday's defeat by Everton was hard to
George McCartney reflected on what might have been in the wake of a second
disappointing defeat by Everton in four days.
The left-back said West Ham United were punished for not taking some good
early chances when Everton nicked a goal through Yakubu on the stroke of
half-time before wrapping up a 2-0 victory courtesy of Andy Johnson in the
closing stages. The loss mirrored Wednesday night's Carling Cup exit to the
same opponents, when Everton goals towards the end of each half made the
McCartney said: "We conceded in the 45th minute again and obviously that has
been able to lift them the lift in the second half. We found it hard to
break them down and they have scored another breakaway goal in injury time.
Two-nil looks harsh at the end of the day."
Saturday's loss took Everton into the top six, with the Toffees showing the
benefit of being able to pick 15 of the 16 players that were involved in
their 2-1 midweek win - including the same starting eleven. Such consistency
has been a feature of their season, and it has helped give them the
understanding needed to get results home and away.
"They are a tough team to break down," McCartney said: "It is something like
12 games unbeaten now and in the last couple of years they have been pushing
for those Champions League places," he added. "They are on a bit of a roll
at the minute. Although we tried our best and worked hard it wasn't good
"We were looking for a bit of revenge after playing on Wednesday night and
getting beat, but it wasn't to be. I think we were probably the better team
first half and created a few chances but when you don't take the chances
sometimes you get punished for it and that was the case today."
Enough is Enough in spotlight - WHUFC
The campaign to end the use of weapons among young people has moved forward
West Ham United continued their support of the Enough is Enough campaign
with Saturday's league game against Everton.
The club is working closely with the elected Mayor of Newham Sir Robin
Wales, Newham Council and the Metropolitan Police to persuade young people
that carrying a weapon is not acceptable. Enough is Enough is a council-led
initiative designed to raise awareness among young people that weapons can
cause pain and heartache and take innocent lives.
Club officials, management and coaching staff were wearing green ribbons to
show their support for the campaign, while the players will be wore Enough
is Enough shirts during the pre-match warm-up. Captain Lucas Neill, Dean
Ashton, Anton Ferdinand and Hayden Mullins as well as former Hammers player
Leroy Rosenior have all recorded campaign messages encouraging fans to text
The Enough is Enough campaign follows the stabbing of 17-year-old Hammers
fan Rizwan Darbar from Forest Gate, who died in October after muggers tried
to steal his mobile phone. Adam Regis, 15, from Plaistow, and Paul Erhahon,
14, who went to school in Beckton, died in knife incidents in March and
April respectively. In January, Newham Sixth Form College student Stephen
Boachie, 17, was stabbed to death and Mohammed Ahmed, 17, from Manor Park,
suffered a similar fate in August. Last month, Biendi Litambola, 17, was
killed in Canning Town.
Rizwan Darbar's brother Tausif and the rest of his family and Kristina
Caesar, the mother of Adam Regis, are backing the campaign. There is also
support from Home Office Minister Tony McNulty, urban R'n'B artist Mumzy,
Newham's Young Mayor Zuhayb Ahmed and Abdul Malik, 20, from Plaistow, who
lost his sight after being shot in April. Sir Robin said: "This campaign
will hopefully encourage young people to give up weapons and report those
who carry them.
"We want our younger generation to realise that carrying a weapon will not
solve their problems and that there are people and services who can help if
they feel vulnerable. Youth crime has decreased in Newham over the past
year, but recent attacks - some of which have resulted in the tragic deaths
of our young people - are proof that knife and gun crime is still a problem,
not only in Newham but throughout the UK.
"We have so many talented youngsters in Newham and it saddens me to think
that some of them will throw their lives away - and the lives of others.
Let's all take a stand and say Enough is Enough." If you want to pledge your
support to the campaign text your name and the word ENOUGH to 07624 809655.
(Normal text charges apply).
You can also visit the website www.newhamsaysenoughisenough.com to pledge
support. If you have any information about gun or knife crime you can call
Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.
West Ham 0-2 Everton - BBC
By Mike Burnett
Everton proved too good for West Ham for the second time in three days to
remain unbeaten in 12 games. Yakubu, who sealed Everton's midweek Carling
Cup win, headed home after good work from Tim Cahill and Mikel Arteta in the
dying moments of the first half. West Ham missed a host of chances with Dean
Ashton volleying wide and Freddie Ljungberg seeing a shot blocked. And Andy
Johnson sealed the win deep in injury time, catching keeper Robert Green off
West Ham were eager to avenge Wednesday's 2-1 Carling Cup quarter-final
defeat and driven forward by Scott Parker, they created plenty of
goalscoring opportunities before Yakubu broke the deadlock moments before
the half-time whistle. Parker was at the centre of all West Ham's moves
going forward, most notably setting up Ashton's looping volley which drifted
just wide of Tim Howard's goal midway through the first half. Ljungberg
should have also done better but had his shot blocked after failing to make
the most of a one-on-one with keeper Howard. But against the run of play,
Everton gained a crucial edge when Arteta picked out Cahill in the Hammers
box and the Australian headed back across the goal to leave the unmarked
Yakubu with an easy nod past Green.
It was only Everton's second clear chance of the half - the first came when
Leon Osman found space on the edge of the Hammers box but slipped as he
struck the ball and it sailed harmlessly over. West Ham were forced into a
change at the start of the second half with Henri Camara on for the injured
Carlton Cole. Parker continued to provide the spark in midfield but Everton,
buoyed by their lead, showed more attacking intent and Lee Carsley unleashed
a dangerous long-range effort towards the top right-hand corner of the goal,
only to see it deflected wide. Osman was left to rue a missed opportunity
when he was sent through into a one-on-one with Green but knocked the ball
wide, while a drive from Yakubu from the edge of the box was parried away.
Everton were forced to weather a late barrage, with West Ham keeper Green
moving towards the halfway line to help hoist the ball into the box. But the
Toffees regained possession and took advantage of a defenceless goal as
substitute Johnson lofted a shot over the retreating Green to secure
West Ham boss Alan Curbishley: "Where we were left wanting is that we needed
to take that first chance - we had a glorious couple of chances and didn't
take them. "We've had two tight games with Everton but they've been closer
than the scores suggest. I think Everton's first goal on the stroke of
half-time was a blow. "But the second half, we gave it our best shot but
didn't have the quality to break them down."
Everton boss David Moyes on Yakubu: "It probably shouldn't be a surprise to
him that he's a leading goalscorer. He scores goals, he gets in the right
position and his play has been really good - he's linking the team up and
his work-rate is excellent. "We think we've got good players, a great
football club, and we're trying to make strides in the Premier League."
West Ham: Green, Neill, Collins, Upson, McCartney, Solano (Noble 59),
Parker, Mullins (Reid 79), Ljungberg, Ashton, Cole (Camara 46).
Subs Not Used: Wright, Spector.
Everton: Howard, Neville, Yobo, Jagielka, Lescott, Arteta, Osman, Carsley,
Pienaar, Cahill, Yakubu (Johnson 87).
Subs Not Used: Wessels, Hibbert, Gravesen, McFadden.
Booked: Yakubu, Johnson.
Goals: Yakubu 45, Johnson 90.
Ref: Steve Tanner (Somerset).
Curbs bemoans lack of quality -KUMB
Filed: Saturday, 15th December 2007
By: Matthew O'Greel
Alan Curbishley gave an honest assessment of his side's performance after a
goal in each half condemned the Hammers to defeat against Everton this
afternoon. The United boss admitted that his team lacked the kind of
creativity required to break down a resolute visiting side such as Everton -
whilst claiming that the 2-0 scoreline was a touch 'flattering'. "We gave it
our best shot but just didn't have the quality to break them down,"
Curbishley told the BBC's Match of the Day*. "That's great credit to
Everton, I think. "Perhaps we were left wanting again today against a decent
side. But we had some glorious chances and didn't take them. We've had two
tight games with Everton and they've been closer than perhaps the scoreline
West Ham's season thus far has been blighted by a succession of injuries,
and there was more bad news for Curbishley today after Carlton Cole, who was
a late inclusion in the squad, was forced off at half time due to a
recurrence of the hip injury that had previously threatened to make him miss
the entire match.
Added to that were the newly-acquired injuries for Matthew Etherington and
Luis Boa Morte, which meant Curbishley was once again down to the 'bare
bones' in terms of team selection. "When you play three games in a week as
we just have perhaps we'd like to make a few changes - changes with players
who are fit and ready to come in," said Curbishley. "But we just weren't in
that position. "They've given me everything they have; I've got no
complaints this season about their effort. It's been a very difficult first
half of the season with constant change and disruption - and we've had it
again today. "But that was a tight game here today, and 2-0 was flattering
Something clearly lacking in the team at present is any kind of creative
source which has often seen the team revert to one-dimensional football,
much to the chagrin of the watching Boleyn crowd who are used to watching -
and expect - far more inventive and adventurous football. Curbishley is
clearly aware of that particular shortcoming - and once again pointed to the
injury list as the reason for the lack of inspiring performances. "It's more
the creative players [we're missing] I suppose," he said. "The players we
brought in for big money in the summer. We've never had a chance to put it
together. "I couldn't tell you what my best team is because some of the
players who thought they wouldn't get a chance in the side have been playing
and doing well - Carlton Cole being one of them. And I don't think I'm going
to get them all fit, which is frustrating for everybody. "I've got a strong
squad here but I just haven't been in the position to field it and to see
what I've got - which is very frustrating for everybody. Most of all for the
fans, I think, becasue they've seen us go away from home and pick points up.
"But we're finding it a little bit difficult here."
* KUMB.com are currently unable to attend post-match press conferences at
The Boleyn Ground.
West Ham Utd 0 Everton 2 - KUMB
Filed: Saturday, 15th December 2007
By: Matthew O'Greel
West Ham owner Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson revealed earlier in the week that he
was investing a further £30m in the club - although not to increase Alan
Curbishley's war chest ahead of the coming transfer window.
But following yet another insipid display by the Hammers there will be
serious questions asked about the lack of firepower available to Curbishley
- something that needs to be urgently addressed if the Hammers are not to
find themselves at the wrong end of the table again come the end of the
For all their effort, United are simply coming up short in front of goal -
and with only ten goals coming from their strikers all season it is clear
that the lack of firepower is seriously affecting performances and results.
Main striker Dean Ashton is seriously off the pace at present - something
evident by another poor performance today, whilst Craig Bellamy is set to
remain out of action until the end of January.
Carlton Cole - the one bright spot up front so far this season only managed
a half today before being replaced due to a hip problem, whilst Bobby Zamora
is still nowhere to be seen - presumably one of several players apparently
going missing in East London's very own version of the Bermuda Triangle.
Everton, of course, are enjoying a good season, with interest remaining in
four competitions. But once again - as was the case on Wednesday night - it
was all too easy for the Blues who were rarely troubled by a Hammers attack
which showed little in terms of potency.
All of West Ham's decent chances came in the first half, with Ashton,
Freddie Ljungberg and James Collins spurning good opportunities to open the
scoring. In the second half they failed to test Blues keeper Tim Howard at
all, as they slipped to yet another home defeat.
That home form is now a serious concern for Alan Curbishley who has seen his
team win just three times at The Boleyn this season - and one of those was
against Championship side Plymouth in the Carling Cup.
But that will be of no concern to Everton boss David Moyes who once again
outmanouvred his United counterpart to ensure a second win in East London
within three days.
On Wednesday night it was an 88th minute goal from Yakubu that sent the
Hammers spiralling out of the Carling Cup - and once again it was goals at
the end of each half that condemned West Ham to a third home defeat of the
The Hammers had been the better of the sides in the opening 45, but in the
first minute of first-half injury time Yakubu - just as he did on Wednesday
night - cropped up to score against the run of play following some good work
by Arteta and Cahill, with United minds seemingly cast more towards their
forthcoming half-time refreshments.
Virtually an entire half later - or the third minute of second-half injury
time, to be precise - sub Andy Johnson raced through before cooly lobbing
Rob Green - stuck in no man's land - to confirm the victory.
Positives for the Hammers were few and far between, but Scott Parker did his
chances of nailing a regular first team slot no harm at all with a gutsy,
However that was about all Curbishley can take from today's performance,
which at least leaves the Hammers in the upper half of the Premier League
tonight (albeit on goal difference).
West Ham United: Green, Neill (c), McCartney, Collins, Upson, Parker,
Mullins (Reid), Solano (Noble 59), Ljungberg, Ashton, Cole (Camara 46).
Subs: Wright, Spector.
Everton: Howard, Neville (c), Yobo, Jagielka, Lescott, Arteta, Osman,
Carsley, Pienaar, Cahill, Yakubu (Johnson).
Subs: Wessels, Hibbert, McFadden, Gravesen.
Goals: Yakubu (45+1).
Toffees nail Hammers - SSN
Yakubu and Johnson see off Hammers
By Chris Burton Last updated: 15th December 2007
Late goals at the end of each half by Yakubu Aiyegbeni and Andy Johnson gave
Everton a 2-0 victory over West Ham. The win stretches Everton's unbeaten
run to 12 games with the victory. The Hammers had more of the possession,
but were unable to break through a solid Everton back-line. The home side
enjoyed the better of the chances in the first half, but with injury time
approaching Yakubu snatched his ninth league goal of the season. A looping
cross from Mikel Arteta was knocked back across goal by Tim Cahill, and
Yakubu got his head to the ball before the outstretched hands of Robert
Green. Everton retreated behind the ball after the break, and West Ham were
forced to resort to firing desperate long balls into the box. With time
almost up and the Hammers pushing for an equaliser, Johnson was able to take
advantage of the wide open spaces to race away from Matthew Upson and coolly
lob the ball over Green to seal the game in second-half stoppage time. West
Ham started on the front foot and Ashton got there ahead of Joseph Yobo but
his deft volley over Howard's head drifted inches wide. James Collins then
wasted a gift for West Ham after a corner dropped to him unmarked seven
yards out but the Wales international defender sliced his volley. Leon Osman
fired over from the edge of the West Ham box but the opening came for for
Everton three minutes before the interval.
Mikel Arteta picked out Cahill in the Hammers box, the Australian beat
Matthew Upson in the air and Yakubu was unmarked to poke his shot past
Parker tried to inject some urgency into the West Ham midfield after the
interval with a charging run upfield but Everton were showed more urgency.
Green did well to punch clear under pressure and Lee Carsley then saw his
25-yard drive deflected wide for a corner. Alan Curbishley then replaced
Solano with Mark Noble as West Ham effectively switched to 4-3-3 with
Ljungberg pushing forward to join Ashton and half-time arrival Henri Camara.
Noble bustled his way into the Everton box but there was still no end
product from West Ham who could not break down the Toffees' high-pressure
defence. Green dived at Yakubu's feet to push the ball clear but West Ham
continued to invite pressure on themselves as they repeatedly failed to keep
posession. Everton wasted a golden opportunity to seal the game when Osman
waltzed onto a long ball from Arteta and blasted his shot high and wide with
only Green to beat. Green was stretched by a header from Yakubu and then
tipped another long-range drive from Carsley over the bar. Pienaar and
Yakubu linked on the edge of the area to tee up another shooting opportunity
for Osman, who again fired over the bar. West Ham were trying to force
things but their final ball was woeful and as they threw everything forward,
Everton stung them on the break. Phil Neville lumped a long ball forward and
Johnson lofted his shot over the retreating Green.
Curbs bemoans Toffees defeat - SSN
Curbs down after Toffees defeat
Last updated: 15th December 2007
West Ham manager Alan Curbishley was understandably disappointed after the
2-0 defeat at home to Everton. Goals from Yakubu Aiyegbeni and Andy Johnson
were enough to give Everton their second win inf four days over The Hammers.
Curbishley felt that the game could easily have gone in his side's favour
after another tight encounter between the two sides. "We've had two tough
games against them, two very even games," said Curbishley. "Today the
deciding point was always going to be who got the first goal. We were two
closely matched teams, and they scored in the 45th minute to send them in at
half-time happy. "We missed two glorious chances to take the lead, and so it
could have been a different story."
Hammers trial Hungarian - SSN
Korcsmar arrives on two-week trial
By Juha Pal Last updated: 14th December 2007
West Ham United have taken highly-rated Ujpest midfielder Zsolt Korcsmar on
trial. The 18-year-old Hungarian travelled to London on Thursday and his
trial will come to an end on 21st December. Hammers boss Alan Curbishley is
keen to take a closer look at the youngster, who is reportedly being
monitored by clubs in Holland, Belgium and Spain. Reports suggest that West
Ham will undergo talks with Ujpest once Korcsmar completes his two-week
W.Ham 0-2 Everton: Five in three for Yakubu - Soccernet
Ayegbeni Yakubu continued his hot goal-scoring streak as Everton beat West
Ham for the second time in four days. Yakubu heads home past Rob GreenThe
£11.25million Nigerian pounced for his fifth goal in three matches - and
11th of the season - shortly before half-time as Everton sealed an east
London double. On Wednesday night Yakubu capitalised on a defensive mix-up
to book Everton a place in the semi-finals of the Carling Cup. On Saturday
he took advantage of some slack marking and latched onto Tim Cahill's
knock-down to extend Everton's unbeaten run to 12 matches in all
competitions. Andrew Johnson scored in the last minute as West Ham chased
the game and the 2-0 win moved the Toffees level with Liverpool, who face
Manchester United on Sunday. West Ham, out-hustled on Wednesday night,
suffered the same fate this time as Everton got their reward for being
hungrier off the ball and sharper on it. There was no place in the side for
the unwell Danny Gabbidon, whose mix-up had gifted victory to the Toffees in
midweek, and Nolberto Solano returned from being cup-tied. West Ham forced
the first corner of the afternoon and Solano, whose quality at dead-ball
situation was badly missed on Wednesday, tested Everton goalkeeper Tim
Howard, who did well to deflect the ball clear. Leon Osman linked well with
Steve Pienaar but was squeezed out by the West Ham defence as he ran into
the box before volleying an effort wide after Mikel Arteta's neat lay-off.
Freddie Ljungberg drilled a low ball into the box which ran through to
Solano and then Lucas Neill at the far post, but the West Ham captain could
not capitalise. Carlton Cole then worked half a yard of space down the right
to whip a cross in towards Dean Ashton, who was gearing up for a near-post
volley when Joseph Yobo made a timely interception. Solano was making a
difference to West Ham's creative play and after a neat combination with
Hayden Mullins and Scott Parker, the ball broke for Ljungberg, whose
first-time shot from 12 yards was well held at the second attempt by Tim
Howard. Parker's determination and bravery fashioned West Ham's best chance
of the half as he dived in to head the ball off Cahill's toe. Parker got a
bloody nose for his trouble as the ball fell to Solano, who lofted an
inch-perfect ball into the box. Ashton got there ahead of Yobo, but his deft
volley over Howard's head drifted inches wide. Everton began to dictate the
pace and worked a neat opening down the left for the overlapping Joleon
Lescott, but Hammers goalkeeper Robert Green dealt comfortably with the
England defender's poor low cross. Yakubu left James Collins for dust down
the left wing, but once again Green was able to mop up. Collins then wasted
a gift for West Ham after a corner dropped to him unmarked seven yards out,
but the Wales international defender sliced his volley. Osman fired over
from the edge of the West Ham box, but the opening came for for Everton
three minutes before the interval. Mikel Arteta picked out Cahill in the
Hammers box, the Australian beat Matthew Upson in the air and Yakubu was
unmarked to poke his shot past Green. Parker tried to inject some urgency
into the West Ham midfield after the interval with a charging run upfield
but Everton were showed more urgency. Green did well to punch clear under
pressure and Lee Carsley then saw his 25-yard drive deflected wide for a
corner. Alan Curbishley then replaced Solano with Mark Noble as West Ham
effectively switched to 4-3-3, with Ljungberg pushing forward to join Ashton
and half-time arrival Henri Camara. Noble bustled his way into the Everton
box, but there was still no end product from West Ham, who could not break
down the Toffees' high-pressure defence. Green dived at Yakubu's feet to
push the ball clear, but West Ham continued to invite pressure on themselves
as they repeatedly failed to keep possession. Everton wasted a golden
opportunity to seal the game when Osman waltzed onto a long ball from Arteta
and blasted his shot high and wide with only Green to beat. Green was
stretched by a header from Yakubu and then tipped another long-range drive
from Carsley over the bar. Pienaar and Yakubu linked on the edge of the area
to tee up another shooting opportunity for Osman, who again fired over the
bar. West Ham were trying to force things, but their final ball was woeful
and as they threw everything forward, Everton stung them on the break. Phil
Neville lumped a long ball forward and Johnson lofted his shot over the
Everton manager David Moyes is determined to prove the top four in the
Barclays Premier League is not an exclusive club. Moyes guided Everton to
fourth place in the league two seasons ago and today's 2-0 win at West Ham
moved the Toffees to sixth place, level on points with city rivals
Liverpool. Strikes from Ayegbeni Yakubu and Andrew Johnson extended
Everton's unbeaten run to 12 matches in all competitions. Moyes rails at
those who claim no side is capable of breaking the dominance of Manchester
United, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool on a permanent basis. He said: 'That
is the kind of fighting talk I quite enjoy. It is nearly motivation to me. I
think `I'll show you'. It was done two years ago. People say `can we break
into the top four'? 'The truth is that has already happened. There are a few
teams making a fist of it. People said we couldn't break in and when we did
people said it was a blip. We have to do it again.
'This is probably the best squad we have had and they are probably playing
the best but they still have to beat the squad that finishes fourth two
seasons ago and that will take some doing.' But Moyes also believes the
strength of the Premier League means a top-half finish would not be an
'I think it will be hard to finish in the top 10 with the likes of
Manchester City, Aston Villa, Portsmouth and Blackburn.' Yakubu extended his
scoring run to five from three games but Moyes' credit went to his
defenders. 'They have been very good. I have to praise Phil Jagielka and
Joleon Lescott has been immense for weeks. Today the boys at the back have
done very well. At times it was like the kitchen sink (was being thrown at
them) and they stood up to it well.'
West Ham manager Alan Curbishley was left to bemoan a lengthening injury
list after his side suffered their second defeat to Everton in three days.
Yakubu had pounced on a late mistake on Wednesday night to book Everton a
place in the Carling Cup semi-final. Danny Gabbidon and Luis Boa Morte were
both missing while Carlton Cole was forced off at half-time with a
long-standing hip problem. They joined the likes of long-term absentees
Craig Bellamy, Bobby Zamora, Kieron Dyer, Anton Ferdinand and Matthew
Etherington on the sidelines. 'I can't ask any more from the players,' said
Curbishley. 'I am getting the best out of them but we need that bit of
quality at both ends of the pitch.' Curbishley could have to dip into the
January transfer market if their poor luck on the injury front continues.
'It is something we have got to discuss. With so many players not available
it is very difficult to see where you start and we found last year how
difficult it is to do things in the window. But if it gets any more critical
it is something we have to think about.' Curbishley will have to work
closely with new chairman Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson, who took over from Eggert
Magnusson during the week. 'From being relatively stable in terms of
appointments we have now had three chairmen in just over a year and two
managers which is so unlike West Ham,' said Curbishley. 'BG was instrumental
in buying the club in the first place. He has been there from the outset.
Everything had to go through him anyway so he is aware of everything that
has happened at the club.'We must move on and get on with it.'
West Ham 0-2 Everton - West Ham Online
Biscuits - Sun Dec 16 2007
Everton may well be looking into arrangements to stay holed up in East
London for good. They certainly find these parts inspiring enough it seems.
Just three days ago, the West Ham defence were combining to gift Yakubu a
last minute winner in the Carling Cup, and the Hammers backline were just as
accomodating to the Nigerian in the league too.
At least West Ham managed to score on Wednesday night though. Carlton Cole
got their goal then, but as has become the norm now, picked up an injury.
Knocks have beset Alan Curbishley's squad, and his options were typically
limited again. Cole braved the December cold to risk his injury, yet could
not manage more than a half, and West Ham were never as dangerous after the
big striker went off.
They certainly had their chances in a tight first half, which had the feel
of two close friends spending that little bit too long together, now in need
of some welcome time apart. For Everton, that will come in the form of a
trip to AZ Alkmaar in the UEFA Cup on Thursday, while West Ham, happier on
the road, travel to Middelsbrough next week, one of two sides they have
beaten at Upton Park so far.
Indeed as long as they continue to underperform in front of their own fans,
Curbishley will continue to fail to fully win over the crowd. While he has
never professed to be one of the great entertainers, fans are only on the
cusp of happiness if you play ugly and win. Defeat in that manner does not
tend to placate the punters.
Nevertheless West Ham did play some neat stuff at times, not least when a
swift passing move found one of Freddie Ljungberg's trademark runs. A goal
looked inevitable but Joseph Yobo blocked well, allowing Tim Howard to save.
West Ham continued though, Dean Ashton volleying inches wide and Scott
Parker heading into the side netting.
All the while Everton were happy to soak up the pressure, safe in the
knowledge that they could well pounce at any moment. An Everton goal was
always likely to involve Mikel Arteta, and as half time approached, his
cross to the far post was headed back by Tim Cahill for Yakubu, who had
escaped the clutches of Matthew Upson, to nod beyond Robert Green.
Everton are a bad side to concede to. Solid, they are a strong unit, and
give little away thanks to the work of midfield patroller Lee Carsley. In an
attempt to reverse the midfield dominance, Curbishley withdrew width in the
shape of Nobby Solano for Mark Noble, yet the change confused his charges,
with few players appearing to know where they were playing. Curbishley's
Wingless Wanderers? It has a catchy ring to it.
The rest of the action was tiresomely predictable, West Ham hoofing long
ball after long ball for Yobo and Phil Jagielka to clear, and the visitors
were capable of wrapping the game up. They should have done so on 68 minutes
but Leon Osman missed badly when clear, and then Green excellently repelled
In stoppage time, however, substitute Andy Johnson settled the game, lobbing
the stranded Green after Upson had failed to deal with a Phil Neville's long
punt. Now then, when's the return match?
Green 6- He had little to do for most of the game, but still found himself
beaten twice as those in front of him floundered.
Neill 6- He struggled at times with the fluidity of Everton's midfield,
finding himself out on position on occasion. His passing was often wayward.
Collins 5- Yakubu got the better of him several times and he looked ring
rusty and cumbersome after a long time out with injury. He would probably
have hoped to return in a less taxing fixture.
Upson 5- Guilty too often of the long ball syndrome, but perhaps can be
excused due to lack of options. However losing Yakubu in the box was
inexcusable, as was his part in the second goal.
McCartney 6- He was not helped by what was in front of him as he missed the
injured Matthew Etherington, but McCartney has still enjoyed better games.
Beaten by Cahill during the first goal.
Solano 6- His substitution was certainly strange, especially as his
contribution had led to three chances.
Mullins 5- Gave away both the ball and free kicks too often.
Parker 7- He was willing to get stuck in for the cause and repeatedly drove
the team forward as the game went on. However his distribution let him down
Ljungberg 7- The run was typical of the Swede. He should have scored but it
is encouraging that he got into the position. Even so, he faded as the game
Cole 6- He gave the team a target to aim for, but was clearly playing with
Ashton 5- A conundrum. He is not fit but must play due to other injuries,
and during that time, his inability to show his true form may harm true
perceptions of his ability. However it would be galling to believe
accusations of sulks and laziness.
Camara 4- Fifth choice and fifth rate.
Noble 7- He will probably get a chance next week. Here his intentions were
obvious even though he could not pick the lock.
Reid 3- It is sad to see a youngster go through an experience like that, but
it is one which will convince Curbishley that he is either not ready or not
the answer. The latter is more probable.
Yakuba gives Everton belief in pursuit of elite - Telegraph
By Duncan White at Upton Park
Last Updated: 1:08am GMT 16/12/2007
West Ham United (0) 0 Everton (1) 2
With the engines of hype overheating in anticipation of today's elite double
bill, David Moyes made it abundantly clear that his Everton side will fight
to the bitter end to break up that Champions League quartet. Being told that
fourth place represents an insurmountable peak only motivates Moyes to start
"That's the sort of fighting talk I quite enjoy," Moyes said. "It was done
two years ago. Everyone said it was impossible and we did it. Then when we
do it we get told it was a fluke. So we need to do it again. That's the
"This is the best squad I have had in my time here and I think we are
playing the best. But we've still got to beat that squad that finished
fourth two seasons ago and that's going to take some doing." Well, the
momentum is certainly building. Thanks to goals in stoppage time of both
halves they stretched their unbeaten record to 12 games.
The agent of Everton's recent excellence is Yakubu, the Nigerian striker who
cost £8 million from Middlesbrough and arrived amid slanders on his
work-rate and commitment. Having scored the winning goal as Everton
eliminated West Ham from the Carling Cup in midweek, he struck again,
heading in his seventh goal in five games.
After West Ham had missed a series of excellent chances, Everton had seemed
fortunate to be going into the break level. So it was with no little
impudence that Mikel Arteta slung in a cross from the left for Tim Cahill to
cushion-head into the path of the unmarked Yakubu. The Nigerian nodded past
the advancing Green.
There was reason for Alan Curbishley to feel aggrieved. Freddie Ljungberg
had been denied by an excellent close-range save from Tim Howard while Dean
Ashton came close with a delicate volleyed lob from a Nolberto Solano cross.
Everton's Joseph Yobo was indomitable throughout.
Indeed Solano had been at the heart of West Ham's best football, with both
James Collins - in for the injured Danny Gabbidon - and Scott Parker failing
to convert fine deliveries from the Peruvian.
So when Curbishley withdrew Solano, he was roundly booed by the West Ham
support, a chorus of discontent that was reprised at full time. "They just
have to accept that's how it is at the moment," Curbishley said."We are
getting as much out of the payers as we can at the moment. We've just got so
many players not available and this week we have lost Etherington, Boa
Morte, Gabbidon and Cole."
The injuries have been relentless and if the situation continues Curbishley
conceded there might need to be more investment in January. The club's
owner, the Icelandic billionaire Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson, has taken on the
chairman's role in place of the departed Eggert Magnusson, and in his more
active role may provide reinforcements.
Just like on Wednesday night, some inept defending let in Everton for a late
second. Matthew Upson attempted to steer a header back to Green but
misjudged how far away the keeper was, allowing Andy Johnson - on as a
substitute for Yakubu - to sprint onto the ball and guide a lob over the
stranded Green. It was met with jubilation by Moyes and it is a sign of the
strength of this Everton squad that when Yakubu departs for the African Cup
of Nations, a striker of the calibre of Johnson is waiting in the wings.
Moment of the match: Midway through the first half Freddie Ljungberg surged
into the box and with just Tim Howard to beat, seemed certain to score. He
poked the ball low to the American goalkeeper¹s left but he somehow managed
to claw the ball away. Had that gone in, West Ham might have gained the
confidence to take this game by the throat.
Man of the match
Ayegbeni Yakubu (Everton)
• Four attempts, three on target and one goal
Curbishley: We need a bit of quality at both ends of the pitch - Daily Mail
Last updated at 19:06pm on 15th December 2007
West Ham manager Alan Curbishley was left to bemoan a lengthening injury
list after his side lost 2-0 to Everton - their second defeat to the Toffees
in three days. Yakubu had pounced on a late mistake on Wednesday night to
book Everton a place in the Carling Cup semi-final. Danny Gabbidon and Luis
Boa Morte were both missing while Carlton Cole was forced off at half-time
with a long-standing hip problem. They joined the likes of long-term
absentees Craig Bellamy, Bobby Zamora, Kieron Dyer, Anton Ferdinand and
Matthew Etherington on the sidelines. "I can't ask any more from the
players," said Curbishley. "I am getting the best out of them but we need
that bit of quality at both ends of the pitch."
Curbishley could have to dip into the January transfer market if their poor
luck on the injury front continues. "It is something we have got to discuss.
With so many players not available it is very difficult to see where you
start and we found last year how difficult it is to do things in the window.
But if it gets any more critical it is something we have to think about."
Curbishley will have to work closely with new chairman Bjorgolfur
Gudmundsson, who took over from Eggert Magnusson during the week. "From
being relatively stable in terms of appointments we have now had three
chairmen in just over a year and two managers which is so unlike West Ham,"
said Curbishley. "BG was instrumental in buying the club in the first place.
He has been there from the outset. Everything had to go through him anyway
so he is aware of everything that has happened at the club. We must move on
and get on with it."
Yobo Yakubu does it again - The Times
West Ham 0 Everton 2
John Aizlewood at Upton Park
Beaten only once in the league since the first week of October, with their
horrendous injury list finally clearing and their Icelandic overlords both
pledging £30m of new investment and to mull over a possible 60,000-seater
new stadium, things seemed to be going rather well for West Ham United.
Then, not only did they lose to Everton for the second time in a week, but
they did so with the sort of performance reminiscent of the darkest days of
Everton, meanwhile, find themselves level on points with Liverpool and such
was the strength of their second-half showing against the Hammers they may
have had rather more than Andy Johnson's late clincher to show for it.
Perhaps the most curious aspect of the quirk of the fixture list that meant
these teams faced each other just three days after they had tussled in the
Carling Cup was just how seriously both sides had taken the minor
competition, despite the imminent rematch. Indeed, Everton were unchanged
from Wednesday evening and West Ham tinkered only through injuries to Luis
Boa Morte and Danny Gabbidon, while Nolberto Solano returned after being
Initially, Everton carried on from where they left off, with the nippy
Stephen Pienaar rattling Lucas Neill's cage early on, but in truth there was
little cockle-warming to be had on the coldest day of the season.
Slowly though, West Ham began to divine that lack of speed might just be
Solano began to test the confidence of Joleon Lescott's discomfort at
left-back and in the 14th minute, when tidy approach play wrong-footed
Joseph Yobo and Phil Jagielka, Tim Howard had to be alert to grab Freddie
Ljungberg's toe-poke from six yards out.
Seven minutes later, they came closer still when Solano lobbed a delectable
ball forwards. Howard dallied, dithered, and found himself in no-man's land,
allowing Dean Ashton to lob gently over the bar when scoring seemed a
formality. Soon after, James Collins snuck into the penalty area to meet
Solano's corner, only to slice horribly. As the away support laughed and the
home support shivered, we began to think there might be something here for
the visitors, if only they were braver. Outnumbered in midfield and with
Yakubu an isolated figure in attack, Everton were forced to hope their
rearguard did not wilt and rely on breakaways. It was far from pretty, but
while Yobo gobbled up everything Carlton Cole and Ashton could throw at him,
it was certainly effective and when a half-chance fell to Leon Osman, 41
minutes in, he fell over as he shot from the edge of the penalty area and
the ball spun to safety.
And yet, when all hope of magic seemed to have disappeared, Everton took the
lead in first-half stoppage time. Pienaar and Osman foraged around the
penalty area before finding the Mikel Arteta on the left. The Spaniard
crossed to the far post, Tim Cahill leapt above George McCartney and headed
back into the six-yard box, where Collins and Matthew Upson stood and
admired Yakubu's header as it sailed past Robert Green.
Cole's troublesome hip, which had made him a doubtful starter, forced
Hammers manager Alan Curbishley to give Henri Camara the second half to
prove his worth, but he and Ashton were less on different wavelengths, more
on different planets. But if Everton were difficult to break down with the
scores level, they looked nigh-on impregnable when ahead. In fact, the
security of their goal seemed to relax the visitors and with Arteta waxing
as West Ham waned, holding player Lee Carsley even allowed himself the
luxury of a sortie forwards and his 30-yard thunderbolt was cleared by
Collins before goalkeeper Green had to sprint off his line to thwart Yakubu
as the giant Nigerian bore down on him.
The home crowd were far from delighted when Curbishley withdrew the impish
Solano rather than the lugubrious Ljungberg in favour of Mark Noble.
Typically, Noble added grit, but the sacrifice of Solano's width and deadly
dead-ball skills hardly helped the claret and blue cause, nor did Collins in
the 69th minute when he stood and watched Arteta's expert through ball reach
Osman. Luckily for the Welsh defender, Osman blazed high and wide, when a
more composed head would have put the contest beyond West Ham's reach.
When Camara finally did announce himself in the 72nd minute, his low cross
along the six-yard line was brilliantly cleared by Yobo with Ashton and
Noble poised to strike.
That, though, was a fleeting moment of anxiety for Everton, who turned the
screw another notch with every passing minute. Green saved smartly from
Yakubu and Carsley again, while Osman once again missed the target when
With the home crowd streaming from the stands, there was still time for the
second goal Everton deserved. Phil Neville hoofed a ball forwards, Upson
back-headed it into the path of Johnson, who hurtled forwards, outpaced
Green and slotted home. Everybody had received exactly what they deserved.
Star man: Joseph Yobo (Everton)
West Ham: Green 6, Neill 6, Collins 4, Upson 4, McCartney 5, Solano 7 (Noble
59min 5), Parker 5, Mullins 6 (Reid 79min), Ljungberg 4, Ashton 5, Cole 5
(Camara, ht 4)
Everton: Howard 6, Neville 7, Yobo 8, Jagielka 6, Lescott 5, Arteta 7, Osman
5, Carsley 8, Pienaar 7, Cahill 6, Yakubu 7 (Johnson 87min)
Scorers: Everton: Yakubu 45, Johnson 90
West Ham Utd 0 Everton 2: Yakubu back to haunt Hammers again - The
Nigerian striker returns to sink West Ham for second time in four days as
Everton bandwagon gathers momentum
By Mike Rowbottom at Upton Park
Published: 16 December 2007
West Ham will now be sick of the sight of Everton in general and yesterday's
goalscorer Aiyegbeni Yakubu in particular after their second home defeat by
the Merseysiders in four days. Having fed the Yak on Wednesday night to
offer Everton a late passage to the Carling Cup semi-finals, West Ham's
defence kept up his diet yesterday to help their resilient visitors extend
their unbeaten run to 12 matches.
An aberration on the stroke of half-time gave the Nigerian his fifth goal in
the space of a week and Everton completed their victory with a 93rd-minute
effort from the man who replaced Yakubu, Andy Johnson. Everton are now
within range of the four teams who will rumble into action this afternoon.
The consensus within the game is that Manchester United, Liverpool, Arsenal
and Chelsea are in a mini-league of their own, but that contention clearly
irritates Everton's manager David Moyes, who pointed out that his team had
managed a top-four finish only two seasons ago.
"We probably have the best squad ever at the moment, but we still have to
match the side which finished fourth two years ago and that will take some
doing," he said. "People said we couldn't manage that place, but we did. And
then people were saying it was a fluke, a blip. So we have to do it again."
It may be hard to see how it will happen, but certainly Everton are on an
excellent run – having won 10 of their last 12 games – and the instincts of
their £11.25m summer capture from Middlesbrough, who has the best Premier
League scoring record of any player over the last four years save the
departed Thierry Henry, are paying regular dividends.
West Ham's manager, Alan Curbishley, wore his default put-upon look
afterwards as he bemoaned the calamitous injury record which has still
prevented him bringing all the talents signed in the summer together in one
team. Having lost Matthew Etherington to a groin strain, a similar injury
deprived him yesterday of Danny Gabbidon – the defender whose late
misunderstanding with goalkeeper Robert Green had presented Yakubu with the
chance to score his winner on Wednesday.
Luis Boa Morte was also unable to play yesterday, and Carlton Cole had to
come off at half-time with a hip injury. Meanwhile Craig Bellamy, Julian
Faubert, Bobby Zamora and Kieron Dyer struggle with long-term problems.
"It's frustrating," said Curbishley. "If you look at the most consistent
sides outside the top four such as Everton, Aston Villa and Portsmouth, you
can name their teams most weeks. But we don't seem to be able to keep a
Gabbidon's replacement, James Collins, himself just back from injury,
clearly tired after an effective contribution. But it was his central
defensive partner, Matthew Upson, who was left with most to regret after Tim
Cahill beat him in the air to Mikel Arteta's 45th-minute cross from the left
and gave the unmarked Yakubu a chance to nod home.
By that point West Ham, with Scott Parker playing a prime role, had missed a
series of chances, with Tim Howard excelling himself to deny Freddie
Ljungberg after 15 minutes and Dean Ashton dabbing Nolberto Solano's cross
over eight minutes later.
Once Everton had taken the lead they rarely looked troubled. And as West Ham
strove with increasing desperation to equalise they were caught on the break
three minutes into added time as Upson misjudged a defensive header and
allowed Johnson to lob the stranded and very unhappy Green.
West Ham boss Curbishley eyes January market
tribalfooball.com - December 15, 2007
West Ham United boss Alan Curbishley could have to dip into the January
transfer market if their poor luck on the injury front continues. "It is
something we have got to discuss. With so many players not available it is
very difficult to see where you start and we found last year how difficult
it is to do things in the window. But if it gets any more critical it is
something we have to think about." Curbishley will have to work closely with
new chairman Bjorgolfur Gudmundsson, who took over from Eggert Magnusson
during the week. "From being relatively stable in terms of appointments we
have now had three chairmen in just over a year and two managers which is so
unlike West Ham," said Curbishley. "BG was instrumental in buying the club
in the first place. He has been there from the outset. Everything had to go
through him anyway so he is aware of everything that has happened at the
club. "We must move on and get on with it."
West Ham, Spurs wanted new England coach Baldini
tribalfooball.com - December 15, 2007
England's new team manager, Franco Baldini, came close twice to moving to
the Premiership. He's been linked recently with a move to West Ham, while he
was also on the shortlist for the Tottenham job that went instead to the
lesser-known Damien Comolli.
Villa's Reo-Coker: West Ham hate was making of me
tribalfooball.com - December 15, 2007
Aston Villa midfielder Nigel Reo-Coker believes the way West Ham fans turned
on him last season could make his career. He said: "It might sound stupid
but I am very happy because it made me a stronger person and has made me
realise how strong a character and thick-skinned you have to be. "My
experience there wasn't nice and is not what many players go through in
their entire careers, but that period really turned me into a man. "I hold
no grudges as, in football, you will get people who dislike you and
unfortunately if you throw enough mud it will stick. "What happened at West
Ham wasn't really about my performances but everyone seemed to jump on the
bandwagon saying I think I am better than I am. "I am not arrogant, I am
confident which others might take as arrogance, but if you don't believe in
yourself who is going to? "I was alienated but I should be judged on my
football performances and they were fairly consistent. "I know Nigel
Reo-Coker will always give 100 per cent regardless of what team I am at. And
I should always come off that pitch feeling exhausted. That is what I am
about as I am a team player."