Sunday, April 23

Daily WHUFC News - 23rd April 2017

Impressive Hammers held by Toffees

Dominant, but ultimately disappointed; for all the Hammers' control over
Everton in the Premier League on Saturday, Slaven Bilic's men could not find
a way past the Toffees' defence as they recorded a 0-0 draw at London
Stadium. West Ham the better side throughout, all three points should have
remained in east London. Instead, Ronald Koeman's side battled hard to earn
a share of the spoils and take a point back to Merseyside. Missing the likes
of skipper Mark Noble, full-back Sam Byram and talisman Andy Carroll, the
hosts' squad was short of regulars, but those who stepped in performed
impressively to create a deafening atmosphere at the Club's new home. Havard
Nordtveit superb in midfield, Arthur Masuaku a constant attacking danger and
dependable centre-half Winston Reid impressive on his return, there seemed
only one winner for the majority of Saturday afternoon. And West Ham had the
better of a first half which included few goalscoring opportunities.
Jonathan Calleri was lively and dangerous early on, and forced the first
corner of the game when his headed attempt from Edimilson Fernandes'
inviting cross was diverted wide via a deflection. Manuel Lanzini's
resulting corner was just out of reach of Cheikhou Kouyate, looking for his
second London Stadium goal in as many games. With almost half an hour gone,
the Hammers forced Everton again to defend as Nordtveit twice struck with
venom, but both efforts were well charged down. Minutes later, Kouyate –
like against Swansea – found himself with space 25 yards from goal, but
unlike a fortnight ago, the midfielder could not direct his strike on goal.
James Collins headed wide the final opportunity of the half, glancing past
the post from Lanzini's centre, but Slaven Bilic's men had shown their
intent with an impressive display over 45 minutes.
The second period began as the first had ended – with the hosts on top.
Lanzini came inches away from giving his team the lead, but his goal-bound
drive from 18 yards smashed the top of Phil Jagielka's head and was cleared.
Fernandes, bright and lively throughout, struck over from the
right-hand-side and with home outfit clearly on top, Lanzini even brought
out a stylish rabona cross on the left. 20 minutes from time, Everton
finally managed a first attempt at goal, though the young sub Ademola
Lookman fired a couple of yards wide from distance. It was then once again
Lanzini's turn to try his luck, but Stekelenburg did well to hold his
deflected curler with Andre Ayew and returning sub Diafra Sakho rushing at
him. And the Senegal forward, making his London Stadium debut, almost
ensured it was one to remember, as he had a dangerous shot blocked from wide
on the left. Applauded off on the referee's whistle, it was a West Ham
performance to be proud of, though ultimately not the desired result gained.
On to the next one.

West Ham United: Adrian, Fernandes, Fonte, Reid, Collins, Masuaku,
Nordtveit, Kouyate (Cresswell 79), Lanzini, Ayew, Calleri (Sakho 62).
Subs not used: Randolph, Fletcher, Holland, Rice, Makasi.
Bookings: Fernandes 33, Fonte 76

Everton: Stekelenburg, Holgate, Williams, Jagielka, Baines, Schneiderlin,
Davies (Lookman 46), Gueye (Barry 46), Mirallas (Calvert-Lewin 72), Barkley,
Subs: Robles, Kone, Barry, Pennington, Kenny.
Bookings: Gueye 27, Williams 60, Barry 67

Adrian - We could have got more

Adrian pleased with clean sheet on return to Hammers duty against Everton
West Ham United edged goalless Premier League draw at London Stadium
Spaniard had little to do due to superb defensive display in front of him

Adrian was pleased to keep a clean sheet on his return to the West Ham
United starting XI, but felt the Hammers could easily have turned a goalless
draw into a win against Everton. The Spaniard's goal was expertly protected
by a five-man defence and disciplined midfield at London Stadium, with James
Collins, Arthur Masuaku and Havard Nordtveit particularly outstanding in
keeping the in-form Blues at bay. Such was West Ham's outstanding resilience
that Everton did not muster a single shot on target, meaning Romelu Lukaku
was rendered without a goal for the first time in ten career appearances for
the Blues against the Hammers. That said, the home side failed to make the
most of their own chances, which included eight corners, four shots on
target and a host of other promising positions from both set pieces and open
play. "We could have got more from the game," admitted Adrian, who returned
to the starting XI for the first time in 23 Premier League matches dating
back to November. "We played very well in defence and had chances from set
pieces. The game was a bit open in the second half, but at the end of the
day it's a point and a clean sheet for us. "Everton are on a good run and
are fighting for Europe, so we had to give our best to stop them. It was a
tactical game and we want to win every game, but at the end of the day we
got a draw and a point." "After a very long time not playing, I had been
working hard to help my teammates, and today was good for me and for my
teammates because we kept a clean sheet. Now, we have to keep going like
this until the end of the season."
West Ham's draw means they now sit on 38 points with four matches left to
play, starting at Stoke City next week. Such is the logjam in mid-table that
the 13th-place Hammers are just two points from Southampton in ninth, and
just seven ahead of Swansea City in the final relegation place. "It's very
close," the goalkeeper observed. "The table is not very different between
tenth position and 14th or 15th, but we have to think just game by game. "We
have another away game next week, so we have to keep going and fighting
until the end."

Ian Pearce – The back three were brilliant

Former West Ham United defender Ian Pearce was impressed with the Hammers'
back three as Slaven Bilic's men kept a clean sheet against in-form Everton.
The 42-year-old, who made 163 appearances in Claret and Blue during his
playing career, admired the performances of Winston Reid, Jose Fonte and
James Collins as the hosts shut out the Toffees and dominated proceedings at
London Stadium. Ultimately, West Ham could not grab a winner but Pearce was
delighted to see the Hammers play so well nonetheless. He said: "It was a
good point. Before the game, I was worried about Romelu Lukaku but
defensively we were really good today. "The back three performed very well
and that was the pleasing point – no goals against; perfect. It shows the
quality that West Ham have. We kept Lukaku quiet and that allowed the rest
of the team to build from that. If you don't concede goals, then it's a
great starting point. "Lukaku can be a beast and unplayable on his day. I
was really impressed with how we played against him."

Slav hails 'eleven lions'

Slaven Bilic hails 'eleven lions' after injury-depleted West Ham United hold
in-form Everton
Hammers were without nine senior players through injuries and suspensions
Hosts restricted the Blues to zero shots on target at London Stadium

Slaven Bilic has hailed his 'eleven lions' after injury-depleted West Ham
United edged a goalless Premier League draw with Everton. Despite being
without nine senior players through injury and suspension, the Hammers were
the better team for long stretches against Ronald Koeman's in-form Blues.
While they looked defensively sound and kept Romelu Lukaku
uncharacteristically quiet, the home side just could not find the winner
their performance warranted at London Stadium.
"I am really pleased with the performance," the managed confirmed. "We were
expecting a difficult game and all that comes with that, but I told the guys
after the game that I simply couldn't have asked for more from them. "They
were there with their solidity, composure, effort, determination and
dedication, so top marks for them. I'm pleased with the performance and
pleased with the point in one way, but we were looking for all three. If any
team deserved three points, it was us.
"We played against Everton, who are confident because of the run they've
been on and the position they are in in the table and they have everything
to play for, so to limit them required great work and great concentration in
one-on-one situations. "If we have to talk about one negative, it was the
lack of quality or decision in the final third, and that we didn't score a
Bilic was without the injured Michail Antonio, Andy Carroll, Pedro Obiang,
Angelo Ogbonna, Robert Snodgrass, Sofiane Feghouli and Gokhan Tore, while
Mark Noble and Sam Byram were both banned. Despite those notable absences,
the Croatian was able to field a side that drew on experience and guile to
restrict Everton to next to nothing in terms of goalscoring opportunities.
James Collins, Havard Nordtveit, Arthur Masuaku and the returning Winston
Reid were all immense, while the likes of Edimilson Fernandes, Manuel
Lanzini and the tireless Jonathan Calleri also impressed. "I don't want to
moan before the game about the players who are unavailable, because we have
got what we have got and they played like eleven lions there, running for
each other," Bilic continued. "We are lacking some players who are long-term
injured and some players who are short-term injured and are out, but it's
all about the squad and they showed that today."

West Ham now have 38 points with four games to play and sit seven above
Swansea City in the final relegation place. So, does Bilic feel the Hammers
are now safe? "We are always talking about that magic number of 40, so we
might need a few points because we don't want to go into the last game with
a radio!" he half-joked. "Every game is going to be hard, especially now.
Every team is going to be nervous because virtually everybody is fighting
for something. "What pleases me is this performance. We have got five points
from three games and now we are going to approach the Stoke game, which is
another massive one for us and for them, in a positive way and we will make
good preparation for them."

U15s reach semi-finals in Prague

West Ham United U15s have qualified for the semi-finals of the Slavia
International Cup
After dropping points in their first two fixtures of the day, they won the
last dramatically to make it through
Head of U15-18 Coaching Danny Searle praised his side's character

Danny Searle says his U15s showed great character to qualify for the
semi-finals at the Slavia International Cup. The Hammers dropped points in
the first two fixtures of the day, losing to hosts Slavia Prague and then
drawing 0-0 to the Chinese national team. However, Kai Corbett scored a
dramatic winner in their final group match against MSK Zilina to ensure
their progress through to tomorrow's semi-final. "We made it difficult for
ourselves and we had our destiny in own hands," he said. "It was below-par
performance against Slavia Prague but we still had chances to win the game.
Our performance was much better against China and we dominated from start to
finish but we were nowhere near clinical enough. "That left us needing to
win the final game and the boys showed great character to not only take the
lead but to keep a clean sheet and progress."

The Hammers started sluggishly in their opening day two fixture and went
behind early on. After failing to clear their lines, a Slavia Prague player
nipped in a slotted past Josh Roach. Toby King should have levelled on the
stroke of half-time and the Hammers were thankful to Roach midway through
the second half after he saved a penalty. Will Greenidge and Sam Caiger
missed two great opportunites late on but Searle's men dusted themselves
down and went again a few hours later against the Chinese national team.

The Hammers were frustrated in their fixture against the Chinese national
team, creating a number of openings but struggling to find a way past the
Caiger was thwarted early on and Amadou Diallo shot over in the second half
but all-in-all it was a disappointing result and it left Searle's players
needing a victory in their final match to make it through to the

Their final match – against group leaders MSK Zilina – brought extra
pressure, as it was the Hammers who had to force the issue with their
Slovakian opponents only needing a point. The game had few chances but Kai
Corbett took the one that counted brilliantly, midway through the second
half, rifling beyond the keeper to spark jubilant celebrations. It was a
nail-biting final few minutes but the Hammers saw off their previously
unbeaten opponents to set up a semi-final clash against Group B winners
Sparta Prague tomorrow (10am BST). "We've earned the right to play in the
stadium but we want it to be the final. We must make sure we do our job and
focus on the semi-final. Most importantly we need to improve in the final
third," added Searle.

Pixie enjoys London Stadium performance

Pixie Lott hailed the 'really special' London Stadium after performing her
new song at West Ham United's home. The chart-topping Hammers fan, Strictly
Come Dancing contestant and West End performer put on a superb rendition of
'Baby' at half-time in West Ham's goalless Premier League draw with Everton
on Saturday. After singing in front of nearly 57,000 fans, the 26-year-old
spoke enthusiastically to West Ham TV about the experience of singing at the
home of her favourite football team. "It was amazing!" she smiled. "I think
it was just really special because I've been watching West Ham growing up,
since I was a baby really! "I have come up here with my family, so to sing
out here on the pitch made this a really special day for us, and I am
feeling positive and think we're going to do well. "It's definitely up there
with the best venues I've sung at. It's obviously a really impressive venue
anyway, but it's also special and closer to my heart because I'm a massive
West Ham fan!"

Lott, who scored number one hits with her first two singles, is making a
return to the charts after a three-year absence, during which she has shown
her versatility on stage and screen. "My whole family are here and they've
been so excited to come to London Stadium, so it's been a special day out
for all of us," she enthused.
"I'm really close to all my family and us going to watch West Ham is
something we've all grown up doing, so I guess it just feels more special.
"I support West Ham through and through and I'm feeling positive. I'll be
back at London Stadium again soon, one hundred per cent!"

West Ham United 0-0 Everton
By Matt Davis
BBC Sport

Everton missed the chance to move into the Premier League top five as they
drew against West Ham in an uninspiring encounter. West Ham's Slaven Bilic
will be the happier of the two managers as the point edges his side closer
to Premier League safety on 38 points, seven clear of Swansea in 18th, with
four games remaining. After a dire first half from both sides, it took
Everton until the 70th minute to register their first shot and they did not
manage an effort on target in the game. Premier League top scorer Romelu
Lukaku was reduced to a passenger and was kept quiet by the Hammers'
excellent three-man defence, his only effort coming from a blocked shot. The
match at the London Stadium had been underway for half an hour before either
side registered a shot and even that came via a deflection. Both sides had
made changes in goal for the game, with Adrian playing his first Premier
League match since 5 November for the Hammers and Everton goalkeeper Maarten
Stekelenburg starting for the first time since 19 December. It was Adrian
who looked the rustier of the two and he almost gifted Everton a goal on 15
minutes after miscuing a throw-in. Edimilson Fernandes threw the ball to the
Spaniard, who mis-kicked it before managing to smother it before Kevin
Mirallas could pounce. West Ham defender James Collins had had the best
chance of the half, heading wide from six yards out. It was the home side
who looked most like scoring after the break, but they continually wasted
chances as the game petered out.

Toffees' away form a concern

Everton had the opportunity to go fifth with a win, but their poor away form
continued. Ronald Koeman's side have now won just twice on their travels in
their last 13 games. Although they enjoyed 65.4% of possession in the first
half, they touched the ball only twice in the opposition's goalmouth. Koeman
tried to change things at half-time, sending on Gareth Barry and Ademola
Lookman for Tom Davies and Idrissa Gueye. It was 19-year-old Lookman who
finally managed a shot for Everton, sending one wide from distance. But his
efforts aside, Everton did not trouble the Hammers defence. The big concern
will have been the form of Lukaku, who leads the Premier League's scoring
chart with 24 goals, but managed just three touches in the Everton box. The
one time he did get on the ball in the box he was marshalled brilliantly by
Collins and it took until the 85th minute for the Toffees to send in a
meaningful cross for him to attack. Only Barcelona forward Lionel Messi,
with 17 goals, has scored more often in the top five European leagues than
Lukaku in 2017. However, only one of the Belgian's 14 goals this year has
come away from home. The point moved Everton into sixth, one point above
Arsenal, who have played three games fewer.

Man of the match - James Collins (West Ham)

Collins excelled in the three-man defence. He made a game-high eight
clearances and five interceptions, and kept Lukaku quiet

'A lot of negatives'

Everton manager Ronald Koeman told BBC Sport: "It was really far from what
we are used to, from the first minute to the last second. "We didn't get the
intensity. It was a poor performance with a lot of negatives. "One positive
is we kept a clean sheet. We like to perform to a certain level and it was
far from that. "I wasn't happy at half-time so we tried to do something. I
couldn't change four, five, six or seven. But I changed two to give a signal
to the team. "We need wins now to get a chance of sixth or fifth place."

'11 lions'

Hammers boss Slaven Bilic told BBC Sport: "I am really pleased with the
performance, I could not ask any more from my players. In terms of effort,
dedication and determination, they get top marks. If any team deserved three
points it was us. "To limit them to one chance requires a lot of hard work.
The only bit of negativity is that I felt at moments we lacked some quality
in our decision-making. We played like 11 lions, one for each other. "We
talk about the magic number of 40 [points for Premier League survival]. I
think we might need a few more points, so we are not going into the last
game [still in danger]."

Stalemate struggles

This was the first Premier League game to finish 0-0 at the London Stadium.
This is just the second time that these two sides have drawn 0-0 in the
Premier League in 42 meetings - the other coming in March 2003 at Goodison
Everton failed to find the net for just the second time in their last 17
Premier League games.
For the second time this season, Everton have failed to have a shot on
target in a Premier League game - a joint-worst record with Middlesbrough.
This is the first time in Lukaku's Everton career that he has failed to
score against West Ham - having netted in each of his previous nine
appearances against the Hammers.
Lukaku failed to have a shot on target in this match - the third successive
away game the Belgian striker has failed to do so. It is the longest run
without a shot on target away from home in the Premier League.
Adrian kept his fourth clean sheet of the season; the same number fellow
West Ham keeper Darren Randolph has kept but the Spaniard has played 10
games fewer (12 games).
What's next?

West Ham travel to Stoke on Saturday, while Everton host leaders Chelsea on
Sunday, 30 April.


Written by Sam Royden

After yet another disappointing game last weekend against a team fighting
for Premier League survival. We welcomed Everton to the London Stadium, of
whom have not won away in the Premier League since January when they beat
Crystal Palace. As ExWHUEmployee confirmed earlier in the week, West Ham
have made four changes, with Adrian starting for the first time in goal
since November and Jonathan Calleri, who is making his first start of the
season. The referee appointed for this fixture was Roger East. This was only
Roger East's 9th Premier League game this season. East has been officiating
throughout the three EFL this season with a tally of 17 games.

In a first half, where there was only one shot on target between both teams,
Roger East's performance was encouraging for a referee who has had limited
exposure to the Premier League this season. The game as a whole was lacking
in quality for large parts with both teams giving the ball away far too
easily. Håvard Nordtveit got caught in position by Ross Barkley just inside
Everton's half and the West Ham man pulled the young England international
down and was lucky to escape without a card within 90 seconds.

Adrian was starting his first game since November and avoided embarrassment
after Fernandes' throw-in bounced awkwardly and the spaniard tried to clear
the ball with Romelu Lukaku looking to pounce on a mistake. Luckily for
Adrian, his clearance ricocheted of Lukaku and Adrian was there to collect
the loose ball.

There were two yellow cards in the first half, both of which were for
tripping an opponent. The first caution went to Everton's Idrissa Gueye
after Jonathan Calleri won the ball at the half way line and the Everton
midfielder tripped the Argentine. East made no hesitation to award the
free-kick and to issued a yellow card. The second yellow card was for
Edimilson Fernandes after the young Swiss brought Leighton Baines down after
catching the left back with an out swung leg.

There were a couple of fouls by Tom Davis and Morgan Schneiderlin which
could have been publishable of a yellow card. Tom Davis is still only 18
years old and looks a very good player but the young midfielder's challenge
on Winston Reid was rash & late, and caught the kiwi on the top of his foot.
I've seen these fouls given yellow cards before and East had a word with
Davis and moved on. Schneiderlin was guilty of bringing down a West Ham
player in the same way that both Gueye and Edimilson Fernandes were punished
for. As a referee, you need to ensure that you're remaining consistent with
your decision making throughout the game.

Lee Probert, who has only refereed once in the Premier League this season,
was initially the fourth official for this fixture however he was forced to
replace Sian Massey-Ellis as assistant referee due to an injury that she
picked up in the first half. Referee and assistant referees train with each
other on a daily basis throughout the week so I didn't expect the forced
change to cause any disruption within the team of officials.

I thought Roger East had a good second half and felt he controlled the game
very well. There were three cautions in the second half with Williams, Barry
and Fonte getting a black mark against their names. Ashley Williams was
cautioned after the Welshman was man handling Cheikhou Kouyaté and
eventually brought him down 20 yards outside Everton's penalty area. This
was certainly a yellow card and East was in a great position to make the
decision. Gareth Barry was a half time substitute for Everton and it didn't
take long for the most booked player in Premier League history to get his
tenth yellow card of the season. Andre Ayew's quick feet put the ball past
Barry before the ex-England international body checked the tricky Ghanian.
Jose Fonte was the second West Ham player to be cautioned after the
Portuguese international caught young player Dominic Calvert-Lewin late.

There were appeals by West Ham players for handball against Ashley Williams.
The West Ham corner came in and was won by a West Ham player. The ball
ricocheted off Ashley William's arm while in the air and whilst he was
challenging for the ball. For handball, it needs to be deliberate and on
this occasion, William's had no idea so it was the correct decision by Roger

There was an incident late in the second half when James Collins was walking
a tight rope by holding Ashley William's shirt during an Everton corner.
Referees have been keen to crack down on off the ball incidents in the
penalty area this season and in my opinion I felt Collins was very lucky. If
East did see it Collins pulling Williams shirt and gave a penalty, there
would be no argument on his decision.

Overall, I thought that Roger East had a good game and taking into
consideration that he's only officiated eight games before this fixture, I
was unsure whether he would be up to the task but he definitely was. The
game wasn't as fast paced as other games this season but it was important
that he managed, controlled and kept up with the game.

I thought West Ham played well and with the injuries and suspensions, it was
good to gain a point against a good Everton side. I felt we had very good
chances and got ourselves into good positions but felt that we lacked
quality in the final third. West Ham currently sit seven points above the
relegation zone with four games to go. Our next game is away to struggling
Stoke next Saturday.

West Ham United 0 Everton FC 0
Match Report by @WestHamAmerican

West Ham drew even with Everton on Saturday in a scrappy defensive stalemate
on a glorious sunny afternoon at the London Stadium. Slaven Bilic, sitting
precariously in the bottom half of the table, limped into his home ground
without Andy Carroll, Michel Antonio, Mark Noble, or Sam Byram. With
injuries sidelining the first two, and FA suspensions for the latter two,
the hosting crowd had guarded expectations against an Everton side that is
having one of their finest seasons in years.

With missing regulars in the starting XI, Bilic made a number of changes:
Adrian found his way back into the goal for the first time since FA Cup play
ended. He replaced a struggling Darren Randolph. Also the gaffer inserted
Jonathon Calleri, Havard Nordtviet, and Winston Reid.

Everton also made a change in the net as Maarten Stekelenburg replaced Jose
Robles in goal. Ronald Koeman's side has been riding high as of late, as
Romelu Lukaku is leading the league in scoring and the Toffees are still
chasing a Europa League spot.

Early on, Adrian almost caused disaster in the opening minutes as he failed
to clear the ball, under pressure from Kevin Mirallas. Fortunately he was
able to gather possession and otherwise had a well-played match.

Shots on goal were rare for both clubs throughout the match. Both Nordveit
and Cheikhou Kouyate had long range attempts after the first 28 minutes of
play. Both were either saved by Stekelenburg or went wide. For Everton,
they didn't have a single shot on goal the entire first half of play.

Bilic's 5-3-2 seemed to keep Lukaku in check, as his streak of nine straight
goals against West Ham came to an end today.

The second half, saw Ronald Koeman boldly make two halftime substitutions to
try and spur his high-powered attack. Tom Davies and Idrissa Gueye were
replaced by Ademola Lookman and Gareth Barry for the second half. But the
result was the same. Lookman did have Everton's first shots as he took
consecutive attempts in the 70th and 72nd which were either over or wide.

Given the Hammer's recent futility in defending, the final whistle from
Roger East was a welcome sound as the one point result keeps West Ham seven
away from the drop zone. For the Toffees they climb to sixth ahead of a
struggling Arsenal team.

Of note: the defending was tenacious. With James Collins reminding his home
stadium why he is such a fan favourite. Manual Lanzini had brilliant
moments but without Dimitri Payet or even Antonio, he needs some assistance
on the attack. Diafra Sakho returned in the second half. Whether he can
finish the season uninjured and without his coach running him off the team
before the summer transfer window will be interesting. A fit Sakho is a
great attacking option but with only a few dates remaining on the schedule,
will he have time to find his form?

Despite two back-to-back draws, West Ham still is only seven points away
from disaster. While the bottom two is practically settled, the third
relegation spot is a dangerous moving target. A Saturday visit to
Britannia Stadium will be a monumental fixture, as Stoke sits only a point
ahead of West Ham. At least supporters leaving the London Stadium today can
take heart that, at long last, the Hammers finally seemed to remember the
West Ham Way of defending.

West Ham: Adrian, Collins, Fonte, Reid, Masuaku, Fernandes, Nordtveit,
Kouyate, Lanzini, Ayew, Calleri.
Subs: Randolph, Cresswell, Rice, Mikasi, Holland, Sakho, Fletcher

Everton: Stekelenburg, Holgate, Jagielka, Williams, Baines, Gueye,
Schneiderlin, Davies, Barkley, Mirallas, Lukaku.
Subs: Robles, Kone, Barry, Calvert-Lewin, Lookman, Pennington, Kenny

Referee: Roger East

Slaven Bilic left 'gutted' after West Ham held by Everton
By Oliver Yew
Last Updated: 22/04/17 8:00pm

West Ham manager Slaven Bilic praised his side's performance insisted they
deserved all three points after they were held to a 0-0 draw by Everton. The
Hammers produced a superb defensive performance with centre-backs Winston
Reid, Jose Fonte and James Collins limiting Romelu Lukaku to a single
blocked shot. And they produced the better chances but it proved to be a
frustrating afternoon for Bilic and his side. "We deserved to win," Bilic
told Sky Sports. "To be fair I couldn't have asked for more from my players
and I told them that in the dressing room. "We can talk a little bit about
a lack of quality decisions in and around the box but the spirit, the
determination, the team effort, the defensive side of the game and how solid
we were was excellent. "It's not easy," he added. "We can talk about how
they were not good but it is Everton, a team that's very capable of creating
chances and scoring goals. To limit them to not a single chance in the whole
game you need quality and effort and that's what we had. "I'm only gutted
that we didn't win the game."

Bilic admitted before the game that he was wary of Lukaku's impressive
goalscoring run against his side, with the 23-year-old scoring in nine
consecutive games against the Hammers. At times this season West ham's
defending has been called into question, but that was not the problem
against Everton. And Bilic praised his side for their meticulous approach to
the game. "During the season we've scored enough goals," Bilic said. "Not
today obviously but for us it's been the question of conceding goals.
Against Everton we were great in that but with this game there is
frustration because we didn't have clear cut opportunities. "We did have
eight or nine situations though where we could have scored and we couldn't
but it is very positive. It was a really good team performance in front of a
great crowd. We got a point but we wanted three. "We knew it would be
extremely hard but we go to the next game in a very positive way."

The point means West Ham are seven points above the relegation places with
only four games remaining but Bilic insists the battle to best the drop is
far from over. "Unfortunately it's not a point that guarantees safety," he
added. "Swansea won the game and Hull won the game so it's still not sorted.
However, what pleases me is the performance and we move on to the next

West Ham 0-0 Everton: Ronald Koeman's men left frustrated at London Stadium
By Oliver Yew
Last Updated: 22/04/17 7:36pm

Everton suffered a setback in their bid for a top-five Premier League finish
as they were held to a 0-0 draw by West Ham at the London Stadium on
In a game of very few chances, West Ham, marshalled by Jose Fonte and James
Collins, nullified the threat of the Premier League's top goalscorer Romelu
Lukaku, who barely had a shot on goal. The hosts were the more threatening
side as the game wore on with Manuel Lanzini and James Collins both forcing
saves from Maarten Stekelenburg, but neither side could break the deadlock
on what was a frustrating afternoon in east London. The point inches Slaven
Bilic's side closer to top-flight safety - they are now seven points above
the drop zone with four matches remaining. Everton, they move back above
Arsenal into sixth but are two points behind Manchester United in fifth
having played three more games than Jose Mourinho's men, who take on Burnley
live on Nissan Super Sunday. West Ham made four changes with Jonathan
Calleri making his first Premier League start in place of the injured Andy
Carroll, while there was a change in goal for Everton with Stekelenburg
replacing Joel Robles. There was a slow start to proceedings at the London
Stadium with the pace of the game representing that of an end of season
game. Adrian, who was back in goal in place of Darren Randolph, nearly
produced a costly error when his clearance was charged down by Lukaku, but
the Spanish goalkeeper quickly pounced on the ball ahead of Kevin Mirallas.
It took until the 29th minute for the first shot to come and it fell to West
Ham but Havard Nordtveit's deflected strike was easily saved by
Stekelenburg. Cheikhou Kouyate then found some space 25 yards from goal but
fired his shot wide of the post before Collins headed wide from Lanzini's
cross as West Ham finished the half the stronger of the two sides. Ronaldo
Koeman reacted at the break by sending on Gareth Barry and Ademola Lookman
for Idrissa Gueye and Tom Davies. But it was West Ham who continued their
momentum and Lanzini was in the thick of the action again. Andre Ayew picked
out Edimilson Fernandes in acres of space on the right flank and the Swiss
midfielder's scuffed shot found its way to Lanzini, but defender Phil
Jagielka came to the rescue for the visitors, throwing himself at the shot
to block with his head. Lukaku had a brief sight of goal as he found space
on the right before brusting into the penalty area and beating Collins.
However, the Belgium international dwindled on the ball too long as Fonte
was there to dispossess the forward. Lookman, who had looked bright since
coming off the bench, produced Everton's best shot of the game after 71
minutes, dragging a shot wide of Adrian's post. Moments later, the
19-year-old created another opening on the left-hand side but sent effort
just over the crossbar. Another half-chance went begging for Ronald Koeman's
side late on as substitute Dominic Calvert-Lewin produced the perfect cross
for Lukaku but the ball sailed over the head of the Belgian. A last throw of
the dice from West Ham in the final 10 minutes saw a corner find Fonte at
the back post but his header was saved by Stekelenburg.

Player ratings

West Ham: Adrian (6), Collins (8), Fonte (8), Reid (8), Masuaku (7),
Fernandes (6), Nordtveit (7), Kouyate (6), Lanzini (7), Ayew (6), Calleri

Subs used: Cresswell (6), Sakho (6).

Everton: Stekelenburg (7), Holgate (8), Jagielka (7), Williams (7), Baines
(7), Gueye (5), Schneiderlin (7), Davies (6), Barkley (5), Mirallas (5),
Lukaku (6).

Subs used: Barry (6), Calvert-Lewin (6), Lookman (7).

Man of the Match: James Collins

Cheeky Pixie Lott shows off her bum in denim shorts during West Ham United
half time performance
The pink-haired singer donned a Hammers football shirt during the show
The Mirror
19:14, 22 APR 2017

Pixie Lott showed off her cheeky side on Saturday afternoon as she stepped
onto the football pitch at half time during West Ham United's match with
The two clubs played to a goalless draw at the London Stadium in London, and
it meant the pink haired singer stole the show with her performance.
Stepping out in a tiny pair of denim shorts, Pixie flaunted her toned bum
and long legs as she belted out a track for the Hammers fans. She completed
her outfit with a West Ham shirt - with 'Pixie' and the number seven on the
back. The star couldn't stop smiling as she took the microphone on the pitch
and got cheered on by the crowd. Pixie certainly seemed excited to be
there, as she chatted on the club's Twitter page before kick off. "Hi, it's
Pixie Lott here," she said. "I'm so excited to be here and performing at the
half time. Come on West Ham!" Unfortunately, she didn't seem to be a good
luck charm, as the team were unable to score a goal in their draw with
Everton. It leaves the club 13th in the Premiere League, with Leicester
City, Burnley and fellow Londoners Crystal Palace all hot on their heels.

La Liga duo ready to offer West Ham goalkeeper Adrian a route back to Spain
this summer
Adrian, 30, is frustrated at slipping down the pecking order behind Darren
Randolph after four years as first choice at West Ham
The Mirror
22:00, 22 APR 2017

West Ham goalkeeper Adrian is a target for a host of La Liga clubs this
summer. The Hammers triggered an option to tie down the Spanish stopper for
another 12 months in March. But that has not scared off Espanyol or Athletic
Bilbao as they eye a £3milllion move for Adrian at the end of the season.
Adrian, 30, is frustrated at slipping down the pecking order behind Darren
Randolph after four years as first choice at West Ham. He is settled in
London but with West Ham open to offers, the interest in his homeland could
force a rethink.

Slaven Bilic hails 'amazing' West Ham defence for stopping Romelu Lukaku
Evening Standard

Slaven Bilic believes a tactical change to a three-man defence helped West
Ham keep the Premier League's leading marksman Romelu Lukaku quiet during
their goalless draw against Everton on Saturday. Hammers centre-backs
Winston Reid, Jose Fonte and James Collins produced an excellent display as
the Belgian striker was limited to a single blocked shot. The West Ham boss
admitted he was wary of Lukaku's impressive goalscoring run against West Ham
prior to the game, with the 23-year-old scoring in nine consecutive games
against the Hammers, but praised his side for their meticulous approach to
the game. "It was about stopping the service to Lukaku," Bilic said. "He's a
major threat, scoring 24 goals. The next top goalscorer (for Everton) has
four goals I think so it is about Lukaku. We stopped the service to him from
(Ross) Barkley and (Kevin) Mirallas and when he was getting the ball, we
tried to double him up. "So the whole team, the three at the back, did a
really amazing job on him. "I'm really pleased with the way we played.
Especially if you are talking about how solid we were, how composed we were,
how we kept the shape. If you're talking about effort, determination and
defensive quality, then there's nothing more I could ask from the players.
"They did brilliantly, I told them to be proud of themselves and to use this
pattern as a motivation to boost their confidence for the remainder of the

Bilic also confirmed that midfielder Robert Snodgrass missed out due to a
swollen knee. Meanwhile, Ronald Koeman admitted he felt like making 10
substitutions at half-time after his side's sub-par performance at the
London Stadium. The Toffees failed to register a single shot on target as
their winless run away from Goodison Park stretches back to Boxing Day. Tom
Davies and Idrissa Gueye were the unfortunate duo to be substituted after
the first half as Everton only had one touch in the West Ham's box in the
opening 45 minutes. "I feel sorry for Tom, Gana (Gueye), because if I was
allowed, I would change 10 players after the first half," the Everton boss
said. "(I'm) disappointed about the performance this afternoon. (We were)
far away from the level at every aspect of football. "One positive thing, a
clean sheet and we go home. "We didn't bring intensity to the game, I think
it was too slow. A lot of ball possession, too many players in the centre
position of the midfield. (We) took too much time - in my opinion if you
start a game like this, it's always difficult to change. "It's a nice
stadium, maybe the temperature was a little bit different in the last few
weeks. You try to find some reasons why the team was not at that level we
expect but it's difficult. "I'm not worried, because it's possible, it's


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