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Stoke 3-1 West Ham: Stoke City climb into the top half of the table at the expense of West Ham

By: Phillipa Hopwood 16 Mar 2014 10:06:44

Stoke 3-1 West Ham: Stoke City climb into the top half of the table at the expense of West Ham

Stoke City secured the 3-1 win over West Ham at The Britannia Stadium, claiming a maximum six points from The Hammers this season.

Goals from Peter Crouch, Marko Arnautovic and Peter Odemwingie cancelled out Andy Carroll's dead lock breaking goal and see Stoke climb closer to the survival and the magical 40 point mark.

Stoke made one forced change to the side that drew with Norwich last week with Steven Ireland in for the suspended Jon Walters whilst Sam Allardyce welcomed Carroll, Winston Reid, Mohamed Diame and Antonio Nocerino to the starting line-up.

It took The Hammers just five minutes to breach Stoke’s formidable defence when Mark Noble fed in a floating free kick into the area and Carroll rose about everyone else to head past Asmir Begovic for his first goal of the season.

Mark Hughes’ side tried to reply immediately on the break through Ireland but his shot was straight at Adrian in the West Ham goal.

The hosts gained a corner after a superb break in play, but Ireland’s delivery was past everyone and ultimately came to nothing. Things went from bad to worse for Stoke as Eric Pieters limped off to be replaced by Marc Muniesa inside the first 15 minutes.

Stoke found it hard to break down the West Ham back line in the early stages and chances were few and far between for Hughes’ side.

Crouch managed to find an opening minutes later when his header found the bar, but the striker was the quickest to react to put the ball past Adrian and drag his team back into the game.

Steven N’Zonzi had the chance to take Stoke in front when he let fly from 25 yards, but he dragged his effort wide. Carroll then replied by leaving Ryan Shawcross behind and hitting an optimistic shot from range that was well over.

The visitors had the first chance of the second half as Diame put in a floating ball onto the head of Nolan, but he headed wide.

Arnautovic played a sensational ball to Crouch to run clear but he couldn’t capitalise and the ball was straight into the arms of Adrian.

Kevin Nolan had the ball in the net but the referee disallows it after he deemed him offside. Moments later Stoke had the ball in the net through Arnautovic. After fantastic build up play from himself and Ireland, the Austrian put in a left footed shot from the centre of the box leaving Adrian with no chance.

Odemwingie furthered Stoke’s advantage merely minutes later when The Potters went on the break and Ireland played in the Nigerian who smashed the ball past Adrian to give Stoke the 3-1 lead.

N'Zonzi wanted to get in on the action, stinging the gloves of Adrian from 30 yards. Stoke now climb into the top half of the table, above West Ham.

 


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