Football: Wanderer becomes the squanderer

Click to follow
West Ham United. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2

Millwall. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2

DAVID SPEEDIE'S inability to cap a typically robust display with a goal robbed West Ham of victory at Upton Park yesterday and left them with a gaggle of clubs dogging their heels in the pursuit of automatic promotion to the Premier League.

Put through by Trevor Morley's clever pass two minutes from time, the on-loan striker, with his fourth club this term, aimed too close to Kasey Keller, who parried and snatched up the rebound. Almost immediately he was through again and dragged his shot weakly wide.

West Ham appeared to have three points in hand after retrieving a disastrous start with two goals in a 30-second spell 13 minutes into the game, but having to settle for a draw left them tailing the First Division leaders Newcastle at the head of five clubs, including Millwall, who are covered by only six points.

With Martin Allen and Julian Dicks suspended, West Ham had to reorganise and were caught cold when Malcolm Allen fed Jamie Moralee in the first minute and he cut across the home guard before knocking the ball in.

A free-kick unnecessarily conceded by Keith Stevens, allowed West Ham back in. Speedie hit a wayward overhead kick when the kick was nodded on but the ball fell for Kevin Keen to volley home. Virtually from the restart the Hammers regained possession, Keen slipped a pass to the industrious Trevor Morley and his shot went in off Keller's leg.

Uplifted, West Ham matched Millwall's passing on a cloying surface and their greater urgency earned them control. They were rarely threatened until Stevens rounded off a bout of head tennis following Kenny Cunningham's 77th-minute free- kick to force in the equaliser.

West Ham United: Miklosko; Breacker, Brown, Potts, Gale, Bishop, Robson, Butler, Speedie, Morley, Keen. Subs not used: Holmes, Foster.

Millwall: Keller; Cunningham, Dawes, Roberts, Cooper, Stevens, McGuire (Gaynor, 75), Bogie, Allen (Kerr, 65), Moralee, Barber.

Referee: M Bailey (Cambridge).