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West Ham 3-3 Fulham: Match Report

last updated Saturday 13th January 2007, 7:52 PM
Philippe Christanvalgain
Philippe Christanval fired
home Fulham's equaliser

West Ham fans blamed referee Graham Poll for two points lost after he sent off substitute striker Bobby Zamora for a second bookable offence in a frantic 3-3 draw in which he showed the yellow card to eight other players.

French defender Philippe Christanval fired home Fulham's equaliser in a goalmouth scramble in the fourth minute of stoppage-time after a double by Yossi Benayoun appeared to put the Hammers in charge.

Zamora had levelled in the 28th minute with his 100th league goal and first in 19 appearances after Tomasz Radzinski's freak opener.

But Brian McBride's equaliser kept Fulham in the game and Christanval sealed their sixth consecutive draw right at the death.

West Ham manager Alan Curbishley rang the changes again, bringing back skipper Reo-Coker and accommodating new signings Luis Boa Morte and Nigel Quashie.

However, he soon had to make more when Argentinian striker Carlos Tevez limped off shortly after defender James Collins - the replacement for the injured Anton Ferdinand - in the 14th minute.

Tevez was hurt when brought down by Christanval eight minutes earlier when home fans were convinced Poll should have sent off the French defender for denying a clear goalscoring opportunity instead of just booking him.

But, with Fulham's back-line creaking alarmingly, West Ham still dominated the proceedings, even after going behind to Radzinski's lucky second goal of the season.

Heidar Helguson put in a hopeful header from a Wayne Routledge corner and the ball appeared to strike Radzinski on the shin before deflecting past Roy Carroll.

In a feisty confrontation, just three weeks after their dull goalless clash at Craven Cottage, there was more feuding than football in the first half, with Reo-Coker fortunate not to see red after a foul on McBride, having already been booked.

Boa Morte was also treading a dangerous line, constantly contesting decisions while also missing a pair of inviting chances at the far post from crosses by substitute Jon Spector and Benayoun.

West Ham fans were growing restless when Benayoun completely overhit a free-kick from a promising position, but the jeers were replaced by cheers in the 28th minute when Zamora raced onto Carlton Cole's flick-on to steer his shot beyond Fulham reserve keeper Jan Lastuvka.

It was the former Brighton and Tottenham striker's first goal since the fourth match of the season.

The hard-working Cole looked set to add another until Carlos Bocanegra's last-ditch tackle soon afterwards, but Routledge's low-drive was a whisker away from bringing an equaliser in the closing seconds of the first half.

And the Hammers celebrated the narrow escape by grabbing the lead just 12 seconds after the break.

Match Stats West Ham Fulham
Goals 3 3
Possession 58% 42%
Goal attempts 12 9
On Target 7 6
Corners 8 5
Off-sides 4 0
Fouls 21 21
Yellows 3 6
Reds 1 0
source: Soccernet

Zamora had a vital part in it, clipping Benayoun in from the left for the Israeli to defeat Lastuvka with a cracking cross-shot.

It looked certain to signal a handsome West Ham win but, amazingly, the next goal came from Fulham - McBride netting a pull-back from the left by Moritz Volz in the 57th minute after catching keeper Roy Carroll with an outstretched boot trying to convert a similar pass by Radzinski seconds earlier.

West Ham had nobody but themselves to blame, having failed dismally to clear a corner, but Benayoun came to the rescue again just seven minutes later, pouncing on even worse turmoil in the Fulham rearguard.

Two defenders collided as he snaffled possession on the edge of the box before defying Lastuvka's attempt to bring him down and sliding his shot past Liam Rosenior on the line.

West Ham should have strolled ahead but again became caught up in a physical battle and Zamora was given his marching orders after fouling Bocanegra in the 76th minute.

And although the Hammers tried attack as the best means of defence, they were caught out right at the end after five minutes of stoppage-time were added when Christanval blazed home his first for the visitors.

West Ham: Carroll, Dailly, Collins (Spector 11), Gabbidon (Newton 81), McCartney, Benayoun, Reo-Coker, Quashie, Boa Morte, Cole, Tevez (Zamora 13).
Subs Not Used: Green, Mullins.

Sent Off: Zamora (76).

Booked: Reo-Coker, Zamora, Cole.

Goals: Zamora 28, Benayoun 46, 64.

Fulham: Lastuvka, Rosenior, Christanval, Bocanegra, Queudrue, Routledge, Volz, Brown, Radzinski, McBride, Helguson (Montella 67).
Subs Not Used: Warner, Runstrom, Pearce, Omozusi.

Booked: Christanval (6,f), Queudrue (22,f), Rosenior (38f), Helguson (67,f), Bocanegra (77,f), Routledge(84,f).

Radzinski 16,
Goal by Tomasz Radzinski left-footed into bottom-left of the goal from the left side of the six-yard box. Assist was a header by Heidar Helguson from centre of penalty area.

McBride 59,
Goal by Brian McBride headed from centre of penalty area. Assist by Moritz Volz from left wing.

Christanval 90,
Goal by Philippe Christanval drilled right-footed into top-right of goal from centre of penalty area .

Att: 34,977

Ref: G Poll (Hertfordshire).










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