FA CARLING PREMIERSHIP
SATURDAY 7TH AUGUST, 1999
WEST HAM UNITED 1 (1) TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 0 (0)
West Ham scorer:- Lampard, 45
Referee:- Paul Durkin ( replaced by David
Elleray after 16 minutes )
West Ham ( 1-4-3-2 / reverted to 4-4-2 when I.
Pearce was replaced ):- Hislop; Ferdinand; Potts, I. Pearce ( sub
Keller, 38), S. Pearce, Minto; Sinclair, Lampard, Foe; Di Canio (
sub Cole, 88 ), Wanchope
Subs not used:- Forrest; Carrick; Kitson
Booked:- Foe, Di Canio
Spurs ( 4-4-1-1 / reverted to 4-4-2 at half
time ):- Walker; Carr, Perry, Campbell ( sub Scales, 25 ),
Edinburgh; Anderton, Sherwood, Freund, Ginola ( sub, Leonhardsen,
36 ); Dominguez ( sub Ferdinand, 46 ); Iversen
Subs not used:- Baardsen; Taricco
Booked:- Campbell ( first in the book ), Freund
( fancy that ! ), Sherwood ( to be confirmed )
The last time that Spurs beat West Ham was 18
months ago at White Hart lane, and it was Jurgen Klinsmann that
scored that goal. Anyone with an ounce of sense in them knows
that Spurs are in dire need of such a master craftsman to give
them finishing expertise. Most of the assembled talent in the
middle of the park was too easily closed down, or harried off the
ball in the first half, and whilst the names Minto, Ian Pearce,
and Potts do not conjure up the smell of fear, West Ham's
workmanlike men did frustrate the visitors. To increase the hurt,
it was Frank Lampard who scored the winning goal on the stroke of
half-time. Lampard, of course is just one of countless stars
associated with transfer speculation to Tottenham over the past 6
months, but he kissed the shirt, and appears to be happy at Upton
Freund, surprisingly made the start, and though
he was as determined as ever, he looked stale in the first half,
and didn't get rid of the ball early enough. As already
suggested, though, Sherwood, and Anderton were also guilty of
such errors. Leonhardsen ( wearing number 17 ) made his debut at
the start of the second half, at the expense of fans' favourite,
Ginola, but the Norwegian did make a good impression, and he and
Ferdinand had an impact that could easily have led to an
equaliser. Sol Campbell got an early booking for a rash tackle
upon Foe, and made an early departure with a knock, possibly
sustained in that challenge.
Spurs had a fright almost from the kick-off,
when a ball from the left by Di Canio was headed onto the bar by
Paulo Wanchope. Both of these players made a nuisance of
themselves all afternoon. Spurs followed this with some good
passing play featuring Sherwood, Freund, Carr, and Dominguez on
the right. Jose's cross went into the danger area, but was not
Di Canio was effective on the right against
Edinburgh ( perhaps a surprise first choice today ), but also
through the middle. When Spurs got their passes together they did
look classy, but it was too little, too rarely. Ginola had one or
two shots on goal, and was unlucky, in my view to be substituted.
Dominguez worked mainly on the right, and gave Sherwood a chance
in the box, but the ex-Blackburn captain could not get enough
power into the shot, which was on target.
Sherwood probably had the best of Spurs chances
today, with another shot in the first half, and a header in the
second, which he scooped well over the target, when he should
have scored, having been set up by Ferdinand.
Wanchope forced a good save from Ian Walker,
following a Sinclair right wing cross. Freund was unlucky to get
booked for handball, having been fouled, and picking up the ball
as he tumbled to the ground. By this time, David Elleray was in
charge, and he saw things differently. Lampard gave the Spurs
defence an early warning of his ability, when he managed to get a
shot on target from 20 yards, despite having 6 white shirts
Ian Pearce suffered a nasty knee injury in a
collision with his name-sake, and had to be carried off. He is
likely to be out for 7 months.
Some of Spurs best chances were following the
long cxlearances from Walker. One such ball was headed to Ginola
from Iversen, and David beat Hislop, with a chipped cross/shot
that fell on top of the net.
Another good break out of defence, led by
Sherwood culminated in a chance for Anderton, but his shot was
too weak. Then came the killer punch. Di Canio pierced the
defence and found Lampard just inside the area. Lampard casually
slid the ball past Walker into the left corner to take the lead.
Spurs looked fired up at the start of the
second half, and Anderton found Leonhardsen, who pushed the ball
back to Ferdinand for a tasty shot from 25 yards. The ball was
low and went just wide. shortly, Sherwood provided the ball for
Iversen to tee up Leonhardsen, but his shot was held. The game
became more scrappy, and it looked like Sherwood got a booking
for arguing about the lack of free kick when Leonhardsen was
tumbled just outside the area.
Sherwood had to head a cross at full stretch to
prevent a goal scoring chance for Wanchope at the other end.
Iversen was in collision with Hislop, and may have suffered more
than a knock. The TV pictures we received at the lane were
appalling, and I heard that Spurs finished with 10 men. I suspect
Iversen didn't make it to the finish.
With a quarter of an hour to go, Sherwood's
heading chance came and went. Thereafter, Spurs huffed and
puffed, but they couldn't blow the Hammer's house down.
Subsequent newspaper reports confirm that in
fact, it was Marc Vivien Foe who got the early header on Spurs'
bar; confirm that Sherwood got booked; and indicate that Justin
Edinburgh had to leave the field with 20 minutes left on the clock.
Which all goes to show that there's nothing like "being
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