West Ham 1-1 Stoke City: Hammers, Potters battle to draw
- Whelan own goal puts Hammers ahead
- Bojan equalizes
- Stoke unbeaten in six
- Hammers on 11 points
LONDON -- West Ham United and Stoke City battled to a gritty 1-1 draw at the London Stadium on Saturday.
After an edgy first half, the Hammers took the lead through Michail Antonio’s header which deflected off Glenn Whelan but a goalkeeping error from Adrian allowed Bojan Krkic to equalize and the Potters came close late on to snatching all three points in front of 56,970 fans.
With the point West Ham has 11 points, while Stoke has 13 points.
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Stoke looked the more dangerous side early on as Jonathan Walters raced through after Joe Allen’s sublime ball but his driven cross evaded everyone.
The Potters broke once again after Allen won a tackle in midfield and the loose ball set free Wilfried Bony. After racing in on goal, his shot was blocked and Allen blazed the follow up over the bar.
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In the space of a few minutes both teams came close via headers as Dimitri Payet’s corner was met by Angelo Ogbonna but Lee Grant pushed his header away superbly. Moments later Stoke raced up the other end and Walters’ cross was met by Bony but glanced wide.
The first half petered out with Charlie Adam linking up well with Bony but he couldn’t get any power on his effort and Payet flashed a free kick over. 0-0.
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Neither team took the game by the scruff of the neck in the second half with Stoke’s Phil Bardsley and Adam putting long-range efforts over and Grant holding Pedro Obiang’s effort well.
Slaven Bilic then made a double sub with Edimilson Fernandes and Ashley Fletcher coming on to try and liven up West Ham’s attack.
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It worked. A corner from the left came back to Payet and his dangerous ball into the box was flicked on by Antonio and deflected off Whelan’s head, hit the post and squirmed in. 1-0 to the Hammers.
Stoke brought on Peter Crouch and Bojan Krkic to try and grab an equalizer and a combination of Bruno Martins Indi and Crouch almost bundled the ball home at the back post but Adrian saved well down low.
Moments later Adrian was the villain as he came rushing off his line unnecessarily and Walters lobbed him, with Bojan on hand to volley home. 1-1.
Late on Stoke came close to grabbing all three points but Adrian pushed away Charlie Adam’s dipping free kick. It ended in a draw which Stoke were much happier with.