West Ham 2-1 Man City: Hammer blow for champions as Sakho strikes again

first_imgDiafra Sakho scored for the sixth successive Premier League game as West Ham inflicted a Hammer blow to Manchester City’s title bid with a 2-1 victory at Upton Park.Morgan Amalfitano opened the scoring for Sam Allardyce’s side and Sakho added a second to continue his remarkable run in front of goal, before David Silva’s superb curling strike set up a frantic finale.But West Ham, the season’s surprise package, held out to claim a third consecutive victory and maintain their grip on fourth spot.For City, the deserved defeat, which follows a disappointing draw with CSKA Moscow in the Champions League in midweek, will do significant harm to their chances of retaining their Premier League title.Manuel Pellegrini’s side remain second in the table, but are five points behind leaders Chelsea, who will have the opportunity to increase their lead when they travel to Manchester United on Sunday.City may have won their previous three Premier League games, but West Ham went into this clash high on confidence having stormed into the top four following victories over Liverpool, QPR and Burnley in recent weeks.They can now add the champions to their list of victims.City had started brightly, with Sergio Aguero’s dipping half-volley from 25 yards forcing Adrian into a bright stop, but West Ham, with Alex Song pulling the strings in the centre of midfield, began to take control.Joe Hart had already been forced to make a point-blank stop from Enner Valencia’s header on 19 minutes and it came as little surprise to see him picking the ball out of his own net just two minutes later.The superb Song released Enner Valencia down the right and the Ecuadorian skipped all too easily past Eliaquim Mangala before pulling the ball back across the six-yard box for Amalfitano to tap home at the far post.City immediately went in search of an equaliser, and Edin Dzeko fired over from a corner, but the hosts were always a threat on the break and went close to adding a second when Stewart Downing’s header looped narrowly over.Adrian then showed great reactions to deny Aguero and ensure West Ham went into half-time with a 1-0 lead.City began to grow into the game after the break and the Hammers had a lucky escape when Aguero’s close-range strike crashed off the underside of the crossbar before Adrian kept out Yaya Toure’s rebound.But, as City pressed, the Irons were dangerous on the counter, with Song feeding Valencia on the right of the penalty area, who cut the ball back to Sakho and his shot looped just over.And Sakho was not to be denied as he became the first player to score in all of his first six starts in the top-flightAfter Aaron Cresswell had floated over a deep cross, the summer signing from Metz climbed to nod the ball inside the far post. Hart clawed it out, but the GDS correctly signalled it had crossed the line.The champions looked beaten, but hit back immediately when Silva brilliantly curled the ball into the far corner after cutting in from the right and bamboozling the home defence.There were five minutes of stoppage time, and Adrian palmed away a 25-yard drive from substitute Stevan Jovetic as City pushed to salvage a point, but West Ham held out for a hard-earned – and well deserved – win. Diafra Sakho celebrates 1last_img read more