West Ham United vs. Fulham  3 - 0


Nolan delighted with ´special´ Carroll

1 September 2012 17:55

West Ham captain Kevin Nolan says Andy Carroll deserves to be playing every week, and that they are lucky to have signed him.

The on-loan Liverpool striker nodded down a long ball for Ricardo Vaz Te to set up Nolan's opener, West Ham's quickest goal in over seven years - coming after only 53 seconds - before then playing a part in his new side's two other goals in a blistering first-half performance.

"After the disappointment of last week it was important we bounced back," Nolan told Sky Sports.

"And after this week, getting the big lad (Carroll) in late on, it just gave all the lads a huge lift and I think you've seen that at the start.

"Obviously (Carroll's) a great lad and we get on really well off the pitch too.

"We've been so lucky to get him and everyone knows that. You see with his performance today, it was absolutely fantastic, and he deserves to be playing every weekend.

"I said to him before the game, he's got nothing to prove to anyone. Everyone knows his capabilities. All the players, even at Liverpool, know his capabilities.

"I think he's disappointed with what went on up there, but he showed today that he's a top striker in this league."

Nolan also believes that the Hammers have done good business in the transfer window, and is confident for the rest of the campaign.

He added: "Not only Andy (Carroll) and Yossi [Benayoun] last night, but the lads he brought in early doors as well. You know, Jussi (Jaaskelainen), (Mohamed) Dimae, (Modibo) Maiga... we've got a few young boys as well."

Meanwhile, Fulham boss Martin Jol has attributed the heavy loss to his team's inability to cope with West Ham's long-ball tactics.

"When you analyse teams like Manchester United and Chelsea it's difficult but with West Ham it’s easy. You know they will play that long ball and look for the knockdowns," he told reporters.

"If you're 5ft 8in or 5ft 10in you've maybe got a problem, but I thought we should have coped with him (Carroll). We couldn’t cope with him and that's disappointing."

Regular starters Clint Dempsey and Moussa Dembele have recently made the short trip across London to join Tottenham, while striker Bryan Ruiz failed a late fitness test to face the Hammers, and Jol has lamented the subsequent lack of 'creativity' the trio's absence caused.

"Of course we missed players in the creative department," Jol said.

"Ruiz couldn't play and Dembele has gone. It was a concern for us but we'll be fine."


Premier League: West Ham 3 Fulham 0

1 September 2012 15:59

West Ham were absolutely dominant as they beat Fulham 3-0 with Kevin Nolan, Winston Reid and Matthew Taylor all scoring in the first half.

New signing Andy Carroll was an attacking force for the hosts, playing a part in all three goals before leaving the pitch with a tight hamstring in the second half.

With the transfer window closing less than 24 hours before kick off, there were new signings in the match day squads for both sides.

For West Ham, Carroll started up front with Yossi Benayoun's loan move from Chelsea coming too late for him to be selected.

Kieran Richardson and Hugo Rodallega made full debuts for Fulham, with Dimitar Berbatov restricted to a place on the bench.

With less than a minute on the board, the Hammers took the lead after James Collins' clearing header was flicked on by Carroll to Ricardo Vaz Te. The Portuguese then laid the ball off for the on-rushing Nolan, who drove a volley into the bottom corner, giving goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer no chance.

The game was open, with Richardson testing Jussi Jaaskelainen from long range, before another Carroll header set up Mohammed Diame, who crashed an effort off the bar via the hand of Schwarzer.

Schwarzer was in action again, making a low stop from Vaz Te's effort after a good move down the left from the hosts, who were looking effective in the opening stages.

Nolan was in the thick of it again, this time attempting a chip from the edge of the box that just missed the target, landing on top of the net.

The Hammers were on top and they made it count half an hour in, when Taylor's corner was thumped home by Reid after Schwarzer made the decision to try and clear the ball, but got nowhere near it.

And just before half-time, the hosts made it three. Another free-kick pumped into the box from deep, and this time Brede Hangeland beat Carroll in the air, but his header only reached the edge of the box where Taylor crashed it home into the bottom corner to cap a perfect half for Sam Allardyce's men.

Half-time saw Berbatov's introduction for the ineffective Mladen Petric, but it was more of the same as West Ham dominated. The Bulgarian striker oozed class when on the ball, but it was Carroll who dominated proceedings, with his movement causing problems for Hangeland.

Taylor came close again with a free-kick, as his low, swerving effort almost caught out Schwarzer, who just did enough to keep it out.

Goal mouth action was at a bit of a premium, and with a little over 20 minutes remaining, Carroll was forced to leave the pitch after injuring his hamstring while jumping with Hangeland, and was substituted for Carlton Cole.

At the other end, Berbatov was linking well with his new team-mates, creating space for fellow sub Alex Kacaniklic to cross, and again laying off to Rodallega, but his shot was weak and straight at Jaaskelainen.

The Hammers keeper was forced into a late save, pushing Rodallega's effort onto the post, but it was as close as Fulham got to scoring.

Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 38 +43 89
2 38 +32 78
3 38 +36 75
4 38 +35 73
5 38 +20 72
6 38 +15 63
7 38 +28 61
8 38 -4 49
9 38 -4 46
10 38 -8 46
11 38 -17 44
12 38 -10 43
13 38 -11 42
14 38 -11 41
15 38 -22 41
16 38 -23 41
17 38 -13 39
18 38 -26 36
19 38 -30 28
20 38 -30 25