Wednesday, July 26, 2006


Hammers Leave Sweden on High Note!

Goals from Bobby Z, Dean Ashton and Yossi Benayoun were enough to see the Hammers trhough a 3-1 victory against Ljungskile SK in their final game of the Preseason tour of Sweden. Good to see those 3 starting preseason so well with the 2 strikers getting 2 goals a piece in our 3 game endeavour. West Ham however started on the backfoot as they went down to an early goal, a 1-0 scoreline which remained that way at half time. Six minutes into the 2nd half Ashton struck a clinical right footed shot into the far corner to grab an equaliser. Pards made wholesale changes in the 58th minute including the introduction of Zamora who struck the goal just 8 minutes later to give West Ham the lead. The best goal of the evening however was saved til last as Yossi Benayoun on the edge of the penalty area curled a superb left-footed effort into the top corner.

Another positive from this game is the form and enthusiasm of Mark Noble, who was made captain for the first time. He was instrumental in creating both Ashton and Zamora's goals. Mark barely had a sniff last season but seems raring to go and up for the challenge of forcing his way into the first team for the upcoming season. I had high hopes for him last year after hitting the ground running in the Championship in his first season as a pro. It would be good to see him rise to the challenge this year and get more appearances under his belt.

Hammers: Bywater; Mears (Fletcher 58), Paintsil, Dailly (Collins 58), Clarke (Konchesky 58); Noble (Ephraim 67), Bowyer (Benayoun 58), Mullins (Stokes 78), Etherington (Reid 67); Ashton (Zamora 58), Cole (Harewood 58).

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