Hammer time at Goodison
By James Pearson. Last Updated: 14/12/05 9:54pm
David Weir's own goal proved the catalyst for West Ham to come from behind and secure a 2-1 victory over Everton at Goodison Park.
It all looked rosy for the home side when James Beattie fired them ahead early on, but it would prove a frustrating night for the Merseysiders.
Weir's own goal had the scores level at the break, before Bobby Zamora's simple finish after 67 minutes secured all three points for The Hammers.
The visitors had the first sight of goal when full back Paul Konchesky chanced his luck from distance, but Everton were soon exerting pressure of their own.
Firstly Beattie hooked Tony Hibbert's right-wing cross just wide of Roy Carroll's far post, but he was to make no mistake with his second chance soon after.
The former Saints man moved goal-side of defender James Collins to latch onto James McFadden's cross and give The Toffees a deserved lead.
However, McFadden's game was cut short due to injury and while David Moyes was reorganising his charges West Ham levelled matters.
Tomas Repka's right-wing cross looked tame enough, but Weir was caught in two minds in the middle and his inadvertant touch looped the ball over the stranded Richard Wright.
Everton thought they had re-taken the lead when Beattie lashed home from Nuno Valente's free-kick, but his effort was ruled out for offside, although it appeared the striker had timed his run to perfection.
Beattie continued to torment West Ham and his confidence was clearly flowing when he tested Carroll from distance, but the Northern Ireland international was well-placed to make the save.
Surprisingly it was the visitors who seized the initiative after the interval with West Ham creating the pressure and opportunities.
Marlon Harewood saw his well-struck effort from distance float into the side netting, while the former Nottingham Forest man was inches from connecting with Matthew Etherington's cross moments later.
Moyes attempted to change the course of the contest by bringing on Mikael Arteta for Tony Hibbert, but it was The Hammers who took the lead soon after.
Wright could only palm Etherington's low drive to the edge of the six-yard box and Zamora was on hand to slide home into the empty net.
Moyes immediately brought on Duncan Ferguson and he went close with a back-post header from Beattie's cross, but Carroll made a comfortable save.
Everton fans hoped for a frantic finale, but most will have been disappointed at the ease with which West Ham were able to see out the closing stages for the win.
Click here for Everton v West Ham player ratings.
|Everton||Team Statistics||West Ham United|
|1||1st Half Goals||1|
|3||Shots on Target||3|
|9||Shots off Target||3|
Barclays Premier League
|12||West Bromwich Albion||1||1|
|16||Queens Park Rangers||1||0|
|18||West Ham United||1||0|