West Ham mistakes are so costly as Swansea cruise to victory
14:51 25 August 2012
The Hammers gift Swansea the three points at the Liberty Stadium
Swansea City 3 West Ham United 0
West Ham proved to be the architects of their own demise as woeful errors allowed Swansea City to take all three points at the Liberty Stadium.
Two defensive errors in a first half that had seen the Hammers in control for much of it, proved too much for West Ham to peg back and a third in the second half wrapped things up.
New signing Matt Jarvis came straight into the team at the expense of Matt Taylor, but manager Sam Allardyce opted for a less attacking line-up as Ricardo Vaz Te was left on the bench and James Tomkins was brought in to bolster the midfield alongside Mohamed Diame.
Jarvis showed what he could do as early as the second minute. Diame won the ball in midfield and when it was given to the former Wolves winger on the left, he delivered a superb cross that was inches over the head of Kevin Nolan.
West Ham were stifling the home side’s attacking intent with some tough tackling, but it was individual mistakes that were to cost them dearly.
Swansea City grabbed the lead with their first real chance of the game, but it came from a shot that may not have been going in.
Nathan Dyer released Angel Rangel into the box on the right hand side, but as he tried to pull the ball back, Jussi Jaaskelainen’s attempt to cut it out, ended with the ball deflecting off him and into the net.
Rangel may claim it, but it could well have been an own goal by the keeper.
A couple of minutes later, West Ham won a free kick on the edge of the box, but Mark Noble’s effort was punched away by Swansea keeper Michael Vorm under pressure.
But on the half hour disaster struck again for the Hammers and it was of their own making once again.
This time, James Collins’ back-pass was woefully short of Jaaskelainen and it was Michu who nipped in to guide it past the keeper for 2-0.
West Ham came close to forcing their way back into the game on 35 minutes. Collins hoisted a free kick into the box which Winston Reid nodded down for Jarvis. His shot on the turn was excellenty saved by Vorm while Nolan could not quite reach the rebound.
Neil Taylor’s effort was tipped over by Jaaskelainen as Swansea hit the Hammers were hit on the break and the home side were content to play that way as they sat on their gifted two-goal lead.
West Ham took 45 minutes to win their first corner, but then earned three on the trot which could have got them back into the game.
First Jarvis’ corner was nodded on by Collins to Nolan at the far post, only for his shot to be blocked for another corner.
That one saw Tomkins header saved for a third flag kick and this time Cole’s header was going to sneak into the corner, only for Taylor to clear off the line.
Allardyce brought on Vaz Te for Tomkins at the break to try and haul his team back into the game, but it was Swansea who created an early chance when Danny Graham forced a decent save from Jaaskelainen.
Vaz Te’s cross almost put in Nolan and then Cole, but the luck did not seem to be on West Ham’s side as the ball refused to sit up for them at the vital moment.
And Swansea nearly punished the Hammers again on 54 minutes when Dyer threaded a superb ball through to Graham in the clear, but the City striker could only stroke his shot inches wide of the mark.
On 63 minutes the game was put out of West Ham’s reach as Swansea grabbed a third. Wayne Routledge got in behind the Hammers defence and when he pulled the ball back from the by-line, Graham was there to stroke it in.
Vaz Te tested Vorm with a free kick from the edge of the box, but the keeper clung on and Swansea were clinging on easily to their lead.
Michael Laudrup’s team showed last week at QPR just what they could do when they get their noses in front and for the last half an hour they simply stroked the ball around and hardly gave West Ham a sniff of it.
Allardyce gave a debut to Alou Diarra on 70 minutes, but the game was all over by then and West Ham were a badly beaten side.
West Ham: Jaaskelainen, Demel, McCartney, Reid, Collins, Noble, Diame (Diarra 70), Nolan, Tomkins (Vaz Te h/t), Jarvis, Cole (Maiga 62).
Unsued Subs: Henderson, O’Brien, Taylor, Maynard.
Bookings: Cole, Nolan, Collins, Reid.
Referee: Martin Atkinson