West Ham United went down 3-1 last night to London rivals Fulham who have now leapfrogged West Ham in the league table.
Fulham opened the scoring in the 10th minute with Dimitar Berbatov putting the ball in the back of the net with his head from close range, the major gripe for West Ham fans was that it was blatantly offside with the Bulgarian looking sheepishly at the linesman waiting for the offside flag which never came!
Berbatov has been in fine form for Fulham this season, I think West Ham missed a trick in not signing the striker who was available for a very reasonable fee in the summer and would have really pleased the home fans with his silky skills.
Kevin Nolan, who has been on a very poor run of form of late, popped up with the equalizer in the 48th minute after he capitalized on a Mark Noble free kick floated into the box which caught Fulham cold.
West Ham fans barely had time to celebrate Nolan’s goal and reaching parity in the game when Duff flew down the wing and put a ball in the box for Hugo Rodallega to bundle in past a helpless Jussi Jaaskelainen.
Sam Allardyce rang the changes and brought Andy Carroll on to replace Joe Cole, and the big striker looked hungry after his injury lay off and was a real handful for the Fulham defense.
West Ham kept pressing and looking for their second equalizer of the game, however it wasn’t to be and the West Ham fans misery was compounded in stoppage time when Joey O’Brien stuck the ball in his own net from a Martin Petric cross to make it 3-1 to Fulham.
This was a game West Ham really needed to get some points on the board from, not only to try to halt the slide down the table but to stay above Fulham and put an end to this dismal run we have been on.
Just a few months ago it would have been unthinkable for West Ham to be embroiled in any kind of relegation battle, but an awful run of form coupled with teams like QPR bringing in Redknapp and opening an industrial sized cheque book along with teams like Reading almost forgetting how to lose it’s starting to get a bit too tight for my liking.
Allardyce has been backed by the chairman and pulled out all the stops to sign his dream team of Andy Carroll and Matt Jarvis, but it just has not worked out as well as everyone thought it would.
Hopefully we can sign a few last-minute bargains to give us a boost as we need something or it’s going to be a very uncomfortable end to the season.