Sport Soccer

Friday 15 December 2017

West Ham claim first win over Liverpool at Anfield in 52 years

West Ham's Manuel Lanzini celebrates scoring the first goal against Liverpool
West Ham's Manuel Lanzini celebrates scoring the first goal against Liverpool

West Ham ended one of the longest winless runs in top-flight history with their first victory at Anfield in almost 52 years as Liverpool's defensive problems returned to haunt them in spectacularly bad style.

The curse of the manager's press conference came to the fore as after praising the new defensive stability which brought three clean sheets, Brendan Rodgers saw his side concede the fastest goal of the season so far to Manuel Lanzini inside three minutes.

Rodgers had also championed Dejan Lovren for overcoming his problems in his maiden season and showing he could be a "top-class" centre-back but the £20milion Croatian repaid his manager's praise with a disastrous piece of defending to allow Mark Noble to score.

The West Ham captain was harshly sent off late on, after Liverpool's Philippe Coutinho had already been shown a second yellow card, but Diafra Sakho made it 3-0 in added time and 18,978 days after Geoff Hurst and Martin Peters - before they were World Cup winners with England - scored at Anfield, the Hammers had their long-awaited victory.

It was celebrated long and loud by the visiting fans and rightly so as the last time they had the chance to do so the Beatles had just achieved their second number one with She Loves You and a 17-year-old Northern Irishman called George Best had made his Manchester United debut.

As if that was not enough, Coutinho, already cautioned for dissent, was sent off when he slipped trying to close down Dimitri Payet and brought down the midfielder with his body.

It means the influential Brazilian playmaker will miss Liverpool's visit to Old Trafford when the Premier League resumes after the international break.

None of which will matter to West Ham, who were full value for their two first-half goals.

The lively Lanzini had a hand in both, sneaking in front of youngster Joe Gomez to turn in Aaron Cresswell's low cross-shot before then totally embarrassing the hapless Lovren.

Lanzini, considerably smaller and lightweight, outmuscled the 6ft 2ins international out by the touchline and although the centre-back managed to recover possession, he then messed about near the byline and was robbed again as his tormentor crossed for Noble to drive home, whose afternoon was spoiled late by the bizarre decision of referee Kevin Friend to send him off for a challenge on debutant Danny Ings.

Roberto Firmino came closest for a shot-shy Liverpool, crashing a 25-yard effort against the post in the first half on the way to their first defeat of the campaign.


"Statistics in Anfield since 1963....boommm 0-3!!Excellent work boys very proud of you #COYI." - West Ham's suspended goalkeeper Adrian could not hide his delight after his side made history in his absence. - @AdriSanMiguel



Simon Mignolet 6

Nathaniel Clyne 6

Martin Skrtel 5

Dejan Lovren 4

Joe Gomez 4

Lucas Leiva 5

James Milner 6

Emre Can 5

Roberto Firmino 6

Philippe Coutinho 6

Christian Benteke 5


Alberto Moreno 5

Danny Ings 6

Jordon Ibe 5

West Ham

Darren Randolph 6

James Tomkins 7

Winston Reid 7

Angelo Ogbonna 7

Aaron Cresswell 6

Mark Noble 6

Pedro Obiang 6

Dimitri Payet 7

Manuel Lanzini 7

Diafra Sakho 6


Reece Oxford 5

Matt Jarvis 5

Josh Cullen 5


Manuel Lanzini. Made the vital breakthrough early on and then his persistence was rewarded with an assist for the second. He offered a lively outlet down the right all match.


Dejan Lovren losing, regaining and then losing possession again all in the space of 20 seconds to Lanzini, who set up the crucial second goal.


West Ham manager Slaven Bilic was animated from the start and increasingly so in the closing stages as he willed his side on to an historic victory.

Even before half-time Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers was scribbling furiously in his notebook. He made changes in the second half but none had any effect on the game.


Referee Kevin Friend seemed to be officiating a different game to the one most were watching. Got Mark Noble's red card wrong and was far too lenient with a number of niggly fouls.


Manchester United v Liverpool (Premier League, Saturday 12 September)

West Ham v Newcastle (Premier League, Monday 14 September)

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