Marvellous Noble sets up precious win

marknoble_726Magnificent Mark Noble picked up a thoroughly deserved man of the match award as the Irons finally shoved Villa out of the way to pick up three more invaluable points.

Once again the Hammers were slowly away in the first half which saw Ayew sent off for the most disgusting elbow in the face of Aaron Cresswell after 17 minutes.

The Irons just couldn’t get on their game during a depressing first half but it changed dramatically in the second as Noble covered every blade of grass and finally set up Antonio for the opener.

He picked out a magnificent diagonal ball for Antonio to fire in a fabulous header from some distance which curled into the far corner.

And as the bottom of the table outfit tired, Kouyate smashed home the second when from a counter attack after a Villa corner, he and Valencia ran from their own box to make it 2-0.

Noble revelled in a more forward midfield role which had been allowed with Song sitting deeper and, although Dimi Payet was not at his outstanding best, the Hammers always had too much after the manager had clearly got into them at the break.

It means we remain unbeaten at Upton Park since August and now move on to a clash with Southampton at the weekend followed by the FA Cup replay against Liverpool.

We have maintained sixth place, five points ahead of Saints and one behind Manchester United – the story goes on.


About Hugh5outhon1895

Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!" Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon

5 comments on “Marvellous Noble sets up precious win

  1. At least we now know Payet is human. He hasn’t played all that well for two games. Mind you, he hasn’t played badly, just hasn’t been the footballing god that fans have started to worship him as. I think that’s no bad thing. I worried tonight when our boys got stuck, passing it to him while he was heavily marked on the wing. It became a cul-de-sac. I love Mark Noble but once Lanzini is back, I just don’t see a place for him, unless Song makes way.

  2. Fully agree with you Dicksyland!
    Payet seems to find it hard to run at the moment, although still as potent with dead-ball situations. Two possibilities here: has he fully recovered from his injury and/or is he showing signs of fatigue? It is important that he does not suffer a recurrence of the original injury, and may have to play each game in shorter time periods to encourage the repair processes. Maybe Payet and Lanzini (when fit) can share the offensive play-maker role, until both of them are fully fit. This may be an important issue, especially if we can get past Liverpool in next week’s FA Cup replay, when our game load will be pretty full on

  3. I think our pitch is a bit of a concern. Payet may have been feeling it. There’s not much grass on it and the ball doesn’t seem to roll evenly. Compare that to Old Traffords pitch and i can see the difference. Let the grass grow a bit Mr Groundsman.

  4. For me Noble’s excellence was because he was slightly further forward than usual, allowing him to become the playmaker he can be at his best. That volley was a real sign of confidence.

    Song’s depth made this happen, BUT i still have reservations about Song. He makes the game too complicated and often fails to do the simple thing and move the ball on.. There were several moments in the Villa game when he tried too much and lost possession – resulting in a free kick when he could not recover. He can be class, but is still too prone to making the wrong decision. If he can iron out (see what I did there?) these inconsistencies, I would be happy for us to take him on permanently.

    It is asking too much of Payet to be MoM every game. Even he needs help. I like the Lanzini/Payet combo because when they play together they generate room for each other.

    The unmentioned star of last night is Kouyate – The bloke has got one of the best engines in the League. -what a Gut busting run to score to the end of a hard fought game. Antonio too seems to be able to run forever.

    Carroll back against Soton (prob on the bench). Emenike in the squad for extra fire-power; thjen Lanzini and Sakho to be eased back in too.

    Happy times!!!

  5. We started waiting solely for the quick break letting them come onto us and they did not look like they would score and in time we would have broke them down but when they went to 10 men we pressed the game and should have scored double figures,
    Payer still made 12 or more killing passes that could have led to goals and we do not have anyone else in the team at the moment who can do that,
    We need to press every game that’s what’s working for Leicester,Antonlo at the moment and Kouyate are like Payet and Valencia starters but the rest is up for grabs Obiang should get the nod before Song and depending on formation Lanzini or Noble will be the choice that leaves Sakho or Carroll before Moses,
    We are blessed and the same with rotation at the back a part from Cressie who is a must and had no role in the idiotic sending off last night,
    It’s not easy beating 10 men and easy to make a mistake and slip up,we did a great job but missed a chance to improve our goal difference and make other clubs think before coming to our place,
    Another game without defeat enough points to be safe which should keep the Hippo fans quite,

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