Hammers deny Black Cats late on
Sep 22 2012
Kevin Nolan's injury-time strike secured West Ham a hard-earned point from a 1-1 draw with Sunderland in the Barclays Premier League.
Steven Fletcher's fourth goal in three matches had put the Black Cats ahead and seemingly set them on the road to victory at Upton Park.
West Ham had huffed and puffed without reward until Matt Jarvis hooked the ball back to fellow substitute Modibo Maiga and Nolan beat goalkeeper Simon Mignolet with a shot on the turn. Nolan had already brought a magnificent save from Mignolet before volleying the equaliser for his third goal of the campaign.
In the ninth minute, Sebastian Larsson pounced on James Collins' scuffed clearance and lofted the ball back over his head for Fletcher to drill a low shot that Jussi Jaaskelainen got a hand on.
Mohamed Diame's quick feet soon drew a free-kick and Carlton Cole's flick-on fell to Mark Noble, who had his back to goal and turned his shot just wide.
Ricardo Vaz Te then combined with Guy Demel to reach the byline and pick out Nolan, whose acrobatic volley was brilliantly saved by Mignolet.
Hammers boss Sam Allardyce eventually sent on Jarvis and Yossi Benayoun after 57 minutes and the former proved a constant thorn in Sunderland's side.
The visitors were also dangerous on the counter-attack but Winston Reid stood firm to ensure Fletcher's left-foot shot flew over the bar.
In the fourth minute of added time, Sunderland's rearguard effort finally cracked and it was no surprise Jarvis played a key role.
Noble launched the ball forward and Jarvis threw himself at it to just keep it from going out for a goal-kick. The England winger hooked it back to Maiga, who headed down to Nolan and the West Ham captain volleyed on the turn to beat Mignolet and earn a point.
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