West Ham 2 Hull City 1 match report: Sam Allardyce booed by fans at Upton Park despite vital victory over 10-man Hull

Hammers targeted by home fans despite moving closer to safety on a night of more refereeing controversy

upton park

At this time of year, in this type of match, nothing should matter except the result. West Ham United beat Hull City 2-1 to clamber above them to 11th in the table, probably just one league win away from safety.

But this performance from West Ham was so poor, so lacking in everything fans want from their team, that its towering badness managed to overshadow the fact of the three vital points. The West Ham fans booed at half-time - at 1-0 up - and with far more intensity at full-time.

Sam Allardyce responded by cupping his hand to his ear as he walked down the tunnel. In his post-match press conference he laughed and said that he had “not experienced that before in my time in the game” and that he “could not quite believe it”.

It was unusual but it was not surprising. Some West Ham fans have never been convinced by Allardyce and it does not take much for them to turn on him. This performance was certainly bad enough to do that. For 70 minutes West Ham played against 10 men and yet they were out-manoeuvred by a far more imaginative and enterprising Hull City team.

West Ham went ahead with a Mark Noble penalty that should never have been given and won the game thanks to a farcical James Chesters own-goal. But they created very little of any merit themselves, never showing any confidence, imagination or skill on the ball. Adrian had to do far more work than he would have anticipated when he saw opposite number Allan McGregor sent off.

Allardyce, to the surprise of no-one, said that the result was all that mattered. “Obviously for us, today was all about coming off with three points whether we played brilliantly or indifferently,” he said. “I have to remind everybody about the situation playing against 10 men, we are brilliant at playing with 10 men, we beat Cardiff and Swansea and that proves how good we are.”

Steve Bruce said that Hull were “absolutely terrific” and he was absolutely right. Had Mike Dean given a hand-ball against Mohamed Diame after 20 minutes, they would surely have won. Diame controlled a loose ball with his right hand as he burst into the box before being tripped up by Allan McGregor.

Mohamed Diamé is fouled by Hull keeper Allan McGregor, who was sent off (Reuters) Mohamed Diamé is fouled by Hull keeper Allan McGregor, who was sent off (Reuters)
It was a nasty collision and McGregor was sent to hospital with kidney damage. Dean took a while to assess the situation before awarding a penalty and sending off McGregor, forcing Bruce to sacrifice his own son Alex for Steve Harper. Mark Noble scored the penalty.

“It was a blatant handball,” said Bruce afterwards, who wanted to know why Dean took so long to award the penalty and on whose advice he was acting. “So it is a calamity of errors. With the big stakes, we have got to improve the standard. It is happening week after week.”

But West Ham failed to take any advantage and Hull finished the first half stronger. James Chester misdirected a header from a Tom Huddlestone free-kick, and Adrian had to scramble to save from Maynor Figueroa in added time. West Ham knew that had more to do.

After their own fortunate goal, West Ham could have no complaints about the equaliser, just three minutes after the restart. Tom Huddlestone arrowed a 30-yard free-kick towards goal but it caught Nikica Jelavic on the shoulder and flew past Adrian and in.

Allardyce responds to West ham fans booing at the final whistle Allardyce responds to West ham fans booing at the final whistle  

The home fans were anxious and not very impressed when good fortune intervened again. Guy Demel curled in fairly a harmless cross from the right, but it bounced in front of James Chesters and he sliced the ball over Harper's head and into the net.

Back in front, West Ham still did nothing to assert themselves. Hull, the better team, continued to create the better openings in the final minutes. Adrian was called on twice at the end, tipping Huddlestone's shot over the bar and dashing off his line to gather from Yannick Sagbo.

But West Ham hung on and climbed up the table, probably now just one win away from safety. “When we look at the table tomorrow when we get up,” Allardyce said, “the performance hardly really matters.” The fans may not agree with him.

Man of the match Noble.

Match rating 2/10.

Referee M Dean (Wirral).

Attendance 31,033.

Suggested Topics
News
peopleHowards' Way actress, and former mistress of Jeffrey Archer, was 60
Sport
Romelu Lukaku puts pen to paper
sport
News
Robyn Lawley
people
Arts and Entertainment
Unhappy days: Resistance spy turned Nobel prize winner Samuel Beckett
books
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
people
Life and Style
Troy Baker and Ashley Johnson voice the show’s heroes
gamingOnce stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover
News
A speech made by the Turkish Deputy Prime Minister urging women not to laugh in public in order to preserve morality has sparked a backlash on social media from women posting defiant selfies of themselves laughing at his remarks.
GALLERYWhy are Turkish women having a chuckle at the government's expense?
News
i100
Life and Style
Phones will be able to monitor your health, from blood pressure to heart rate, and even book a doctor’s appointment for you
techCould our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?
News
people
Extras
indybest
Travel
Ryan taming: the Celtic Tiger carrier has been trying to improve its image
travelRyanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?
Sport
Usain Bolt confirms he will run in both the heats and the finals of the men's relay at the Commonwealth Games
commonwealth games
Life and Style
Slim pickings: Spanx premium denim collection
fashionBillionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers 'thigh-trimming construction'
News
Sabina Altynbekova has said she wants to be famous for playing volleyball, not her looks
people
News
i100
Life and Style
tech'World's first man-made leaves' could use photosynthesis to help astronauts breathe
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
Could our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?

Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

Spanx launches range of jeans

The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
10 best over-ear headphones

Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

Commonwealth Games

David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star