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Barclays Premier League

Fratton Park (ATT 20,168) 26th December 2005 - Kick off 15:00 Ref: A Wiley

Portsmth Portsmouth vs West Ham United West Ham

Pompey held by Hammers

By Lewis Rutledge.   Last Updated: 26/12/05 5:10pm

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Harry Redknapp was denied victory against former side West Ham, as an entertaining clash at Fratton Park finished 1-1.

Portsmouth, fresh from their first home win of the season last week, will take heart from another improved performance, and The Hammers will be pleased with another point on their travels.

In an open start to the game, both sides had an opportunity to take the lead within the first three minutes. Dario Silva did well to make room for a shot inside the area, only to fire tamely at Roy Carroll, while at the other end a speculative effort from Marlon Harewood flew wide.

Pompey began to gain the ascendancy, with Laurent Robert, switching from wing to wing, tormenting the full backs.

It was no surprise that he played a part in the opening goal, after 17 minutes, latching onto a Tresor Lomana Lua Lua pass down the right and pulling the ball back to the unmarked Gary O'Neil in the centre of the box, whose scuffed shot into the bottom corner seemed to wrong-foot Carroll.

The home team refused to sit back though, and nearly doubled their advantage when The Hammers struggled to clear an inswinging Robert free kick.

There was also a lucky moment for Carroll, when he appeared to handle the ball outside the area when under pressure from Lua Lua.

West Ham, who have been involved in several high-scoring affairs in recent weeks, looked threatening in attack without creating much in the first half, but were always vulnerable when Portsmouth pressed forward.

Shaun Newton wasted the visitors' first good chance moments before half time, blazing over from 12 yards, and Redknapp's men deservedly went into the interval with their noses in front.

The Hammers came out stronger in the second half, and almost levelled the scores when substitute Christian Dailly headed over from close range.

By committing more men forward, they were inviting Portsmouth to try and hit them on the counter-attack, and Carroll had to be alert twice to deny Matthew Taylor and Lua Lua after Pompey had broken forward with speed.

West Ham's positive intent was rewarded though, when Anton Ferdinand rose highest at the far post to nod down Newton's free kick for James Collins, who lashed the ball through a crowd of players and into the net (56).

Both sides fought hard for possession, neither content to settle for a solitary point, and the game fluctuated from end to end.

Portsmouth played with a lot of energy and passion, but were restricted to a barrage of long shots, which were comfortably dealt with by Carroll.

The Hammers were fluent in their passing moves, although there was a lack of cutting edge in the final ball.

Robert was sent off for a second rash challenge late on, and West Ham started to look like the more likely victors.

Despite the high tempo, there were few clear opportunities in the last quarter, but Dailly will have been disappointed not to have at least found the target with a diving header in the dying seconds of the match.

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Portsmouth v West Ham

PortsmouthTeam StatisticsWest Ham United
1Goals1
11st Half Goals0
7Shots on Target3
2Shots off Target9
2Blocked Shots1
6Corners5
15Fouls10
3Offsides0
2Yellow Cards1
1Red Cards0
56.0Passing Success60.4
16Tackles20
75.0Tackles Success100.0
47.9Possession52.1
48.4Territorial Advantage51.6

Matches

Table

Barclays Premier League

Barclays Premier League
Pos Team P Pts
1 Chelsea 16 39
2 Manchester City 17 39
3 Manchester United 17 32
4 West Ham United 17 31
5 Southampton 17 29
6 Tottenham Hotspur 17 27
7 Arsenal 16 26
8 Swansea City 17 25
9 Newcastle United 16 23
10 Everton 17 21
11 Liverpool 16 21
12 Aston Villa 17 20
13 Stoke City 16 19
14 West Bromwich Albion 17 17
15 Queens Park Rangers 17 17
16 Sunderland 16 16
17 Crystal Palace 17 15
18 Burnley 17 15
19 Hull City 17 13
20 Leicester City 17 10

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