Sam Allardyce will be disappointed his team couldn’t grab all three points as Stoke City held them to a 1-1 draw at Upton Park this evening.
Stoke took the lead in the 12th minute with a well worked corner lifted straight from the training ground. Glen Whelan took the corner and Jonathan Walters, who had separated himself from the pack in front of goal, struck the ball first time to score his third goal of the season.
It was a deserved lead for the visitors who started the more positive of the two teams. Tony Pulis’ men could have doubled their lead ten minutes later but Jussi Jaaskelainen made a good save in the 25 minute, collecting Robert Huth’s header.
The home side were keen to reduce the deficit as the half drew on as good work from Carroll and Mohamed Diame saw Asmir Begovic collect it at the latter’s feet.
On the half hour mark it looked as if the home side would be awarded a penalty when Carroll fell in the box. It did look as if Geoff Cameron had made contact with the Geordie striker, but referee Chris Foy waved play on.
Steven Nzonzi wasted a good chance to extend his teams lead, finding himself in space 40 yards from goal he lobbed the ball high and wide.
The Hammers came out on a mission in the second half and were level within four minutes. Diame had a couple of shots on the edge of the box but found himself surrounded by Potters players so rolled the ball to Gary O’Neil on his right. The midfielder crossed into the box and Joey O’Brien was there to poke the ball home to reduce the deficit and score his first Premier League goal. Replays suggest that O’Brien may have been an inch or two offside.
It was all the home side in the first 15 minutes of the second half as the Upton Park faithful had two calls turned down as first Carroll and then Nolan hit the deck. The midfielder’s tumble coming in the box.
Stoke continued to keep the Londoners at bay, with Begovic making good saves from Carroll and O’Neil. Peter Crouch was of more use in his own box instead of the oppositions, as he twice headed away corners.
Stoke were impotent in the second half as they resisted all the Hammers attacks, with Begovic, Robert Huth and Ryan Shawcross repelling everything thrown their way.
Pulis will be the happier of the two bosses as his side worked hard for their point, even though they haven't won in 16 away games. While Allardyce will wonder how long he has to wait for Carroll to score his first goal in claret and blue.