Irons 1 Burnley 0
However in our circumstances I suppose we can give thanks for that but this was no victory to set the blood racing.
Indeed, once Mark Noble had sent keeper Heaton the wrong with way with the spot kick, the game degenerated into a clash of two sides who really hadn’t much of a clue.
Apart from an Amafitano curler a the end of some clever play involving Enner Valencia, chances were few for the Irons although the visitors managed to create some decent chances.
This is an entirely different West Ham team to the one that started the season in such style.
There’s no panache or style. This was the performance of a team who seemed happy to hang on to what they had. Not good enough given the lack of any sort of quality in the opposition.
Danny Ings, now without a goal in 10, astonishingly headed over the bar after losing his marker in the box early on.
Two minutes later West Ham were in the lead through Noble’s penalty after Kouyate was brought down by Duff’s hanging leg after a jinking run into the Burnley area.
An obvious penalty but when ref Jon Moss decided to red card the offender even the most ardent Irons raised more than a surprised eyebrow.
Heaton, saved well from a close-range effort by Enner Valencia, before stopping smartly at his near post after a powerful shot from Morgan Amalfitano, to keep the deficit to just a single goal at the break.
It was mostly a performance of control from West Ham, who seemed more than happy for the most part to see the game out by a single goal.
Although they did have their chances through Amalfitano – who’s curling effort flashed just wide, then captain Kevin Nolan hit the keeper from 12 yards when he was completely free in the area.
Ings and Taylor also had opportunities to level for Burnley, but they were denied by the side netting and Adrian who stopped a close range effort with his feet.
In the end we were probably worth the win but against a team almost certainly doomed to relegation it could and should have been a whole lot more convincing.
But then we have become so used to unconvincing performances we are now grateful for any win. It wasn’t pretty, it wasn’t too enjoyable but the heroes of 1965 were in attendance so that made it worth the trip.
However, quite what Sir Geoff, Martin Peters ‘Ticker’ Boyce and all the rest made of the 2015 Hammers I don’t even what to think about.