Tuesday, 2 April 2013

West Ham United 3 - 1 West Bromwich Albion

 Saturday 30th March
Boleyn Ground

West Ham United vs West Bromwich Albion
1-0 Andy Carroll 16'
2-0 Gary O'Neil 28'
3-0 Andy Carroll 80'
3-1 Graham Dorrans 88'

Predicting a West Ham win is always a dangerous occupation, so it's nice to have been on the money for a change! I expected a win against West Brom, but I certainly wasn't expecting to see us completely outplay the Baggies on Saturday.

One pleasant surprise was the wonderful attacking performance from the centre of midfield, and the clinical finishing of Andy Carroll. Something we haven't really seen in recent times from this West Ham side is an attacking display leading to a number of chances from a number of players, and importantly, a number of goals.

On Saturday we saw just that. The charts below show the shots taken by West Ham, and then the passes that let to those chances being created. What is clear, is that we attacked from all over the pitch. As a team, we have often been reliant on attacking down the left flank, relying on Matt Jarvis to supply Carroll. Well, on Saturday,we saw a far greater spread. In fact, we actually attacked with more regularity down the right hand side (39%).

(White = Goal, Purple = Saved, Blue = Woodwork, Red = Off Target, Yellow = Blocked)

During the international break, I wrote a player spotlight on Mohamed Diamé, and criticised his recent performances. Well, he certainly was back on form against West Brom! Some of the criticisms I've had of Diamé, is that he hasn't been his mobile self in recent weeks, and that he's been poor in possession. The heat map below shows how Mo was all everywhere on Saturday, popping up all over the pitch. And, just to prove me that little bit more wrong, Diamé posted a 100% pass completion rate from his 25 passes.

I could eulogise all day about some of West Ham's play at the weekend, but I spoke in the prematch article about the importance of keeping Romelu Lukaku quiet. As I stated prematch, Lukaku has a tendency of popping up all over the attacking third, well, he was marshalled fantastically by the likes of Diamé and Gary O'Neil, who, I might add, played wonderfully yet again. The heat map shows how Lukaku's game was restricted to the centre of the pitch, where he struggled to beat James Collins and Winston Reid.

And it must be made clear that West Ham defended superbly against the entire West Brom side, as reflected by the positions of their shots. Time after time the Baggies were reduced to long pop-shots as they were unable to get through the West Ham defence.

As I said before, I could go on and on about this win. Let's make no bones about it, West Brom are a good side. People wouldn't be surprised to see them get into the European spots this season. Well, we absolutely tore them apart.

And, as an aside, how nice is it to score three goals of the highest quality? If any of those goals had been scored by a Rooney, a Gerrard or an Aguero, they'd be talked about as goal of the season contenders (particularly the second Carroll goal).

Liverpool next. We're pretty rubbish at Anfield, and we don't have the newly invigorated Andy Carroll in our ranks. Still, after a performance like this, I'm feeling unusually confident...

General Play
4-2-3-1 Starting Formation 4-4-2
28 Starting XI Ave. Age 26.9

Andy Carroll Best Performance Chris Brunt
79.4 CI Rating 65.62

Matthew Taylor Worst Performance Ben Foster
53.63 CI Rating 55.44

45% Possession 55%
(averaged from whoscored, bbcsport, skysports & squawka)

73% Passing Accuracy 80%
63% in Opp. Half 73%
Mohamed Diamé 100% Best Accuracy 94% Romelu Lukaku

334 Passes Attempted 509
Gary O'Neil 54 Most Passes Attempted 72 Youssuf Mulumbu

56 Long Balls 65
James Collins 15 Most Long Balls (excl. GK) 7 Jonas Olsson

Offensive Play
14 Attempts on Goal 19
5 On Target 7
6 Off Target 7
3 Blocked 5
6 From Outside Box 11
Ricardo Vaz Te 4 Most Attempts on Goal 5 Graham Dorrans

5 Corners 3
3 Offsides 2

28 Crosses 17
10 Successful Crosses 1
Gary O'Neil 7 Most Crosses Attempted 6 Liam Ridgewell

57% Aerial Success 43%
Andy Carroll 7 Most Duels Won 5 Gareth McAuley

Defensive Play
13 Tackles Attempted 17
10 Successful 14
Matthew Jarvis 3 Most Tackles 5 Billy Jones

64 Clearances 17
James Collins 20 Most Clearances 11 Gareth McAuley

21 Interceptions 2
Gary O'Neil 4 Most Interceptions 2 Chris Brunt

5 Shots Blocked 3
James Collins 3 Most Shots Blocked 1 Billy Jones

11 Fouls 14
Winston Reid 3 Most Fouls 3 Gareth McAuley

1 Yellow Cards 1
Shane Lone (WBA) 67'
Winston Reid (WHU) 78'
0 Red Cards 1
Youssuf Mulumbu (WBA) 90'

Head to Heads
Jussi Jaaskelainen vs Ben Foster
1 Goals Conceded 3
6 Saves 2
1 Crosses Claimed 3
47% Passing Accuracy 47%
15 Total Passes 15
12 Long Balls 15
80% % Long Ball 00%

James Collins vs Jonas Olsson
50% Aerial Dules Won 0%
1 Tackles 1
3 Blocks 1
2 Interceptions 0
20 Clearances 2
1 Fouls Committed 1

48% Passing Accuracy 92%
25 Total Passes 59
15 Long Balls 7
60% % Long Ball 61%

Mohamed Diame vs Youssuf Mulumbu
100% Passing Accuracy 79%
25 Total Passes 72
0 Long Balls 5
0% % Long Ball 44%
4 Crosses 1
1 Successul Crosses 0
0 Chances Created 4
0 Assists 0

3 Tackles 1
0 Blocks 1
2 Interceptions 0
0 Clearances 0
1 Fouls Committed 2

2 Attempts on Goal 1
0 On Target 0
0 Goals 0

Andy Carroll vs Romelu Lukaku
2 Goals Scored 0
3 Attempts on Goal 2
3 On Target 1
64% Aerial Duels Won 50%

52% Passing Accuracy 94%
31 Total Passes 34
2 Chances Created 3
0 Assists 0

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