skip to content
Stewart Downing takes a shot. Save by Robert Green.
Gabriel Agbonlahor scores a headed goal from close range. West Ham 1-2 Aston Villa.The assist for the goal came from Ashley Young.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Carlton Cole by James Collins. Direct effort from the free kick comes in from Demba Ba, save by Kyle Walker.
Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Thomas Hitzlsperger.
Effort on goal by Carlton Cole from inside the penalty box misses to the right of the target.
Nigel Reo-Coker takes a shot. Save by Robert Green.
Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Stewart Downing, clearance made by Carlton Cole.
Thomas Hitzlsperger produces a left-footed shot from just outside the box that misses to the right of the target.
Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Luke Young by Zavon Hines. Direct free kick taken by Richard Dunne.
Headed effort from inside the area by Darren Bent misses to the left of the goal.
Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Ashley Young, Matthew Upson manages to make a clearance.
Zavon Hines takes a shot. Richard Dunne gets a block in. Effort on goal by Thomas Hitzlsperger from just outside the area goes harmlessly over the target. Gabriel Agbonlahor comes on in place of Emile Heskey.
Ashley Young has an effort at goal from the edge of the area that misses to the right of the target.
Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Ashley Young from the left by-line, comfortable save by Robert Green.
The referee blows for offside against Carlton Cole. James Collins takes the free kick.
Darren Bent takes a shot. Daniel Gabbidon makes a clearance.
Zavon Hines concedes a free kick for a foul on Richard Dunne. Richard Dunne takes the direct free kick.
Demba Ba is ruled offside. Brad Friedel takes the free kick.
Effort from the edge of the area by Ashley Young goes wide of the right-hand upright.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Daniel Gabbidon on Emile Heskey. Direct free kick taken by James Collins.
The assistant referee flags for offside against Darren Bent. Matthew Upson takes the free kick.
(West Ham) makes a substitution, with Demba Ba coming on for Gary O'Neil.
Unfair challenge on Luke Young by Gary O'Neil results in a free kick. Zavon Hines is brought on as a substitute for Victor Obinna. Richard Dunne takes the free kick.
Ashley Young takes a shot. Lars Jacobsen gets a block in. Outswinging corner taken from the left by-line by Ashley Young.
Darren Bent takes a shot. Blocked by Matthew Upson. Ashley Young takes the outswinging corner, Headed effort from deep inside the area by Richard Dunne misses to the left of the goal.
Free kick awarded for a foul by Victor Obinna on Ashley Young. Stewart Downing crosses the ball in from the free kick, Daniel Gabbidon manages to make a clearance.
Stewart Downing fouled by Matthew Upson, the ref awards a free kick. Ashley Young takes the free kick.
Outswinging corner taken by Ashley Young from the right by-line.
Mark Noble gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Ashley Young. Ashley Young produces a shot on goal direct from the free kick, save by Robert Green. Inswinging corner taken from the right by-line by Stewart Downing, clearance made by Lars Jacobsen. Corner taken by Ashley Young from the right by-line, clearance made by Daniel Gabbidon.
Darren Bent takes a shot. Save made by Robert Green. Corner taken right-footed by Ashley Young, James Collins takes a shot. Carlton Cole manages to make a clearance.
Shot from just outside the penalty box by Gary O'Neil misses to the left of the target.
Thomas Hitzlsperger takes the inswinging corner, save made by Brad Friedel.
Carlton Cole is caught offside. Indirect free kick taken by Brad Friedel.
Ashley Young concedes a free kick for a foul on Mark Noble. Robert Green restarts play with the free kick.
Darren Bent finds the back of the net with a headed goal from close in. West Ham 1-1 Aston Villa.Assist by Luke Young.
Shot on goal by Ashley Young from just inside the area clears the crossbar.
Lobbed left-footed shot by Thomas Hitzlsperger. Save made by Brad Friedel.
Darren Bent takes a shot. Victor Obinna gets a block in. Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Ashley Young, James Collins produces a header from inside the area that goes over the bar.
Shot by Victor Obinna from 20 yards. Brad Friedel makes a save.
Foul by Darren Bent on Lars Jacobsen, free kick awarded. Robert Green takes the free kick.
Carlton Cole takes a shot. Save by Brad Friedel. Inswinging corner taken by Thomas Hitzlsperger, Brad Friedel makes a save.
The official flags Carlton Cole offside. Indirect free kick taken by Brad Friedel.
The official flags Darren Bent offside. Daniel Gabbidon comes on in place of Manuel da Costa. Free kick taken by Robert Green.
Robbie Keane takes a shot. Richard Dunne gets a block in.
Ashley Young takes a shot. Blocked by Matthew Upson. Inswinging corner taken right-footed by Ashley Young, Headed effort from deep inside the area by Richard Dunne misses to the right of the goal.
Foul by Thomas Hitzlsperger on Nigel Reo-Coker, free kick awarded. Nigel Reo-Coker restarts play with the free kick.
Carlton Cole takes a shot. Blocked by Luke Young. Corner taken right-footed by Mark Noble, Stiliyan Petrov manages to make a clearance.
The referee blows for offside against Darren Bent. Robert Green takes the indirect free kick.
Mark Noble takes the inswinging corner, Richard Dunne makes a clearance. Robbie Keane finds the back of the net with a goal from inside the six-yard box to the top left corner of the goal. West Ham 1-0 Aston Villa.Thomas Hitzlsperger provided the assist for the goal.
Shot from just outside the penalty area by Stiliyan Petrov misses to the left of the target.
Grant questions Cole charge
West Ham manager Avram Grant has criticised the Football Association's decision to charge Carlton Cole with improper conduct.
Striker Cole has admitted the charge and requested a personal hearing after the FA took action over comments he posted on Twitter during the England v Ghana game at Wembley.
The Hammers striker wrote: "Immigration has surrounded the Wembley premises! I knew it was a trap! Hahahaha. The only way to get out safely is to wear an England jersey and paint your face w/ the St. George's flag!"
Cole, whose mother hails from Sierra Leone and his father from Nigeria, later deleted the message and said it had been a joke.
Grant insisted he had no problem with Cole's tweeting and he suggested the FA should have more important things to concentrate on.
"Today there is Twitter, Facebook. Facebook destroyed one government in the Middle East so I don't know what will happen with Twitter," Grant said.
"It is funny sometimes, especially how Carlton is doing it. He is doing it in a funny way. If people like it they can look at it, if they don't like it they don't have to look at it.
"I don't think we need to take it too far. Of course (his apology) should be the end of it. To charge Carlton Cole with racism, I think it was a joke.
"The FA was a little bit in a fight spirit over the last week. They were looking at Twitter, Facebook and what you said to the referee. This is not the main thing."
Grant will be serving the second of a two-match touchline ban against Aston Villa following comments he made about referee Mike Jones.
There is no precedent for allegedly racist comments expressed via Twitter but Grant does not expect Cole to be banned over the issue.
The most likely outcome for Cole is a warning and a fine. The former Liverpool striker Ryan Babel was fined #10,000 in January after re-tweeting an image of the referee Howard Webb in a Manchester United shirt.
The Hammers tackle Aston Villa at Upton Park knowing a victory could take them out of the relegation zone and to within two points of their struggling opponents.
Gerard Houllier has hailed Aston Villa skipper Stiliyan Petrov as "a fantastic leader" after setting his side a seven-point target to ensure Barclays Premier League survival.
Petrov has had to play second fiddle to the Nigel Reo-Coker and Jean Makoun partnership in recent months.
But the Bulgarian international earned a recall for last week's win over Newcastle and Houllier has confirmed he will start at West Ham.
Houllier said: "I left him (Petrov) out when I felt it was maybe good for the team.
"But he showed a lot of commitment and his fitness has improved and he is a great captain also.
"In difficult times you need the people you can rely on and he is one of them.
"He is in my plans. I'm not talking about the past, I'm talking about the future."
Houllier added: "Stiliyan, and all the squad members have demonstrated a lot in terms of effort, quality of effort, application and mentality.
"They have demonstrated they want this club to go up. They feel committed to what we have to do together and Stiliyan has been a fantastic captain and a fantastic leader for the rest."
Victory will take Villa to the 40 point mark - eight clear of the Hammers.
But even then Houllier will still take nothing for granted.
He said: "Going into the Everton game, we viewed it as a mini league of eight games remaining and I'm pleased we've got four points from the first of those two matches.
"But in fairness we may need another two wins and a draw to be safe.
"I think we need a minimum of seven points."
Last-gasp Gabby gives Villa victory
Gabriel Agbonlahor propelled Aston Villa towards Barclays Premier League safety and edged West Ham towards relegation with an injury-time winner to secure a 2-1 victory at Upton Park.
The Hammers had taken the lead inside two minutes with a strike from Robbie Keane but Villa wrestled back control with Darren Bent's header shortly before the interval.
West Ham goalkeeper Robert Green pulled off a string of top-class saves to keep his side in the game but Villa snatched a deserved victory with a header from substitute Agbonlahor in added time.
Villa's victory moved them up to ninth in the table on 40 points, seven clear of the drop zone, while Avram Grant's struggling side slipped deeper into trouble.
The Hammers have five games left to save their season. The next two are away at Chelsea and Manchester City.
West Ham had billed the game as a celebration of the "Best of British" in anticipation of St George's Day and the Royal Wedding and there were 14 players from these shores in the two starting line-ups.
Scott Parker was missing for West Ham with a troublesome Achilles and replaced in midfield by Gary O'Neil while Carlton Cole, Victor Obinna and Lars Jacobsen all came into the team beaten 3-0 by Bolton last weekend.
Aston Villa featured two changes from their victory over Newcastle, with Emile Heskey and former Hammers captain Nigel Reo-Coker replacing Agbonlahor and Jean Makoun.
West Ham had promised a "traditional street party atmosphere" and the Upton Park faithful were waving their claret and blue pennants inside two minutes after Keane opened the scoring.
O'Neil's blocked shot from a West Ham corner fell to Thomas Hitzlsperger, who lofted a header towards Keane on the edge of the six yard box.
Keane was played on-side by Ashley Young, who had been marking the far post, and the on-loan Tottenham striker turned to rifle his shot past Brad Friedel.
Keane was heavily involved in a bright West Ham start. He turned James Collins and played in Cole but the England striker was denied by Luke Young's block.
Villa came close to an immediate response when Young cut in from the left and ghosted past Jacobsen but his strike was deflected wide by Matthew Upson.
Stiliyan Petrov's interception sparked another Villa attack and Heskey had Bent in support but he was closed down by the West Ham defence.
In an action-packed game, West Ham then had strong penalty appeals turned down after Cole was bundled over by Richard Dunne as he chased Keane's long ball.
Dunne, the last man back for Villa, made contact just outside the area as Cole was primed to shoot. Referee Mark Halsey looked towards his assistant for guidance but gave nothing.
West Ham kept coming forward and Cole forced a smart near-post save from Friedel after he had been fed by a long pass from O'Neil.
Villa thought they had equalised after 23 minutes with a Bent header but it was disallowed by referee Halsey for a push on Jacobsen.
Villa began to enjoy a period of possession but West Ham stayed patient in defence, allowing the visitors to move the ball around without any real penetration.
But all that work was undone when Mark Noble was caught in possession inside the West Ham box and Villa pounced.
Heskey robbed Noble of possession and Young curled in the cross for Bent, who got in front of Wayne Bridge and flashed his header past Green.
Bent's goal sparked a key shift in momentum. There was no sense of a street party inside Upton Park now, just nervous tension as Villa started the second period with a new lease of life.
The visitors were only denied the lead by two magnificent saves in quick succession from Green in the West Ham goal.
Upson's fluffed header allowed Bent to steal in but his low strike from a tight angle was blocked by Green's one-handed save and the ball shepherded out for a corner.
Cole cleared Collins' powerful header off the line before Noble conceded a careless free-kick on the edge of his own box.
Young curled his shot around the West Ham wall but Green was quick to get across and turn the ball behind with a flying finger-tip save.
Grant, who had been forced to replace Manuel Da Costa with Danny Gabbidon in the first half, sent on Zavon Hines for Obinna and then Ba for the injured O'Neil.
Villa remained the more dangerous side. Young flashed a shot across the face of goal and Bent scuffed a golden chance to win the game after being picked out in the box by Walker.
West Ham could not create anything meaningful. Hines saw a snapshot blocked by Dunne and Hitzlsperger skied his follow-up effort.
And in the first minute of injury time, Villa finally got their just desserts with Young finding space down the left and picking out substitute Agbonlahor to head home the winner.
"Carson Yeung buys Birmingham"
© 2004 - 2014 football.co.uk