Our Last Visit To Upton Park!

Last updated : 16 September 2008 By Footy Mad - Editor

WEST HAM: Green, Pantsil, Tomkins, Neill, McCartney, Faubert (Solano 90), Parker, Noble, Ljungberg (Boa Morte 21), Zamora (Cole 68), Ashton.

Subs Not Used: Walker, Mullins.

Goals: Noble 10, Ashton 23.

NEWCASTLE: Harper, Beye, Edgar (Diatta 90), Taylor, Jose Enrique, Geremi, Butt, Barton, Owen, Viduka (Smith 82), Martins.

Subs Not Used: Forster, Duff, Carroll.

Goals: Martins 42, Geremi 45.

Att: 34,980
West Ham had to be content with a point from their 500th Premier League fixture as Newcastle came back from two goals down to leave Upton Park with a 2-2 draw.
The Hammers had appeared to be coasting to an easy victory after Mark Noble and Dean Ashton converted intense pressure into a goal each before the game was 25 minutes old.
But the first half had a surprise ending as the previously dormant visitors hit back with two goals in as many minutes from Obafemi Martins and Geremi.
The home side had managed to get themselves booed off by their own fans the previous week despite actually winning but this time the fans greeted the final whistle with applause.
With full-back George McCartney marauding down the left, West Ham attacked relentlessly from the off and an inexperienced Newcastle back line that featured Steven Taylor and David Edgar was nowhere in the 10th minute when midfielder Noble arrived to send a left-footed effort past goalkeeper Steve Harper from McCartney's cross.
There was a setback for the Hammers when Freddie Ljungberg was hurt in the Newcastle box and had to be carried off on a stretcher but the loss of the Sweden international in the 22nd-minute did not diminish his side's momentum as Ashton made it 2-0 less than a minute later with a shot on the turn after Bobby Zamora had headed on a long ball.
Newcastle had offered zero in return with their three-man strike force of Michael Owen, Mark Viduka and Martins failing to make any headway against a home defence that also included a rookie in the shape of James Tomkins.
But when Tomkins failed to cut out a ball over the top Martins put his side back in the game with a smart finish past the exposed Robert Green, who must have been as startled as anyone to be picking the ball out of the net again two minutes later in stoppage time.
Martins was involved again, firing in only his side's third shot of the afternoon from the edge of the box. Exactly where it would have ended up is anyone's guess but it took a deflection off the head of Geremi to fly into the net.
Newcastle were far more adventurous after the restart but were relieved when Luis Boa Morte, Ljungberg's replacement, fired narrowly wide after Ashton and Noble had seen drives blocked by brave defending.
The second period was more bad-tempered too with Habib Beye of Newcastle followed into the book by Hammers Julien Faubert and John Pantsil.
Nicky Butt was also shown a yellow card for his part in the recriminations that followed Pantsil's indiscretion and Martins was then booked for fouling the West Ham defender following a tussle in the box.
Zamora was replaced by Carlton Cole with 22 minutes left on the clock but the chances had long since begun to dry up and there was to be no repeat of the replacement's winner last week.
Ashton, back in the side following yet another injury, sent a volley spinning across goal and wide and then saw Steve Harper pull off a fine tip-over after Cole had teed him up.
Referee Uriah Rennie might have provided the last word by penalising Owen in his own box but although Faubert's cross clearly hit the Newcastle skipper on an arm, the official ruled it had been accidental.