Match Report: West Ham 3 Southampton 1
West Ham's superb run of form continued as the Hammers came from behind to secure a 3-1 victory against Southampton at Upton Park on Saturday afternoon.
With Southampton dominating possession in the first seven minutes, Mauricio Pochettino's men were rewarded by going 1-0 up.
James Tomkins conceded a free kick in a dangerous area after a foul on Saints captain Adam Lallana.
From the resulting set-piece by Steven Davis, Japan international Maya Yoshida glanced his header past Adrian, meaning the Saints had now scored first in their last six games.
Yoshida spoiled a potential cub record for West Ham as the Hammers were on course to secure their fifth consecutive clean sheet. The last time the East London outfit achieved this was in 1985.
In a blistering first 20 minutes, the home side equalised after captain Kevin Nolan had all the time in the world to pick out winger Matt Jarvis, who beat the offside trap and prodded past Artur Boruc.
Within a blink of an eye, West Ham had turned this game on its head and were now leading. Stewart Downing's corner was met by Carlton Cole whose header slammed against the post. The ball rebounded towards the 29-year-old striker, who finished well for his 50th Premier League goal.
James Collins wanted to get in on the act, but his curling effort from the edge of the box forced Boruc into a good save.
Just after the half an hour mark, Southampton's best chance to make it 2-2 fell to top scorer Rickie Lambert.
The England international's header from a Calum Chambers cross hit the outside of the post, as the hosts breathed a sigh of relief.
The second half got started, with right back Chambers having a shot which was blazed over.
The Saints would be looking for a quick response after letting their lead slip.
After 55 minutes, they mounted the pressure, but with no real conviction.
Teenage sensation, Luke Shaw stung the hands of Adrian with his low drive from 25 yards out. Mohamed Diame replaced Matt Jarvis.
In this tight and intriguing game, James Collins was looking to get his second goal of the season, but his header from a Downing corner hit the roof of the net. Sourhampton's Jack Cork made way for Gaston Ramirez.
A glorious chance for the Saints to draw back level faded, as Shaw had the beating of James Collins down the left flank. His fizzing drive had too much pace for Adam Lallana, and the ball fizzed out of play.
Thirty seconds later, substitute Gaston Ramirez found himself one on one with Adrian, but the Uruguayan blazed his effort over the bar.
After 68 minutes, Lallana's inswinging ball was out of the reach of Rickie Lambert, and all he could do was direct his header over the bar.
Completely against the run of play, West Ham scored a third. Downing's right footed cross, found Carlton Cole, who used the leverage of Jose Fonte to knock down to Kevin Nolan, with the former Bolton and Newcastle man hammering home with a scissor kick, and all but ensuring West Ham extend their unbeaten run to five games.
Lambert's 30-yard free kick was sweetly struck, but Adrian judge it perfectly and handled well.
Diame's speculative 25 yard curling shot would have made it 4-1 had it not been for the upright.
The Saints made a double substitution with youngsters, James Ward-Prowse and Sam Gallagher replacing Steven Davis and Rickie Lambert.
With 78 minutes on the clock, Gaston Ramirez' jinking run evaded the Hammers backline, and his low drive was tipped round the post by Adrian.
With five minutes remaining, Jay Rodriguez let rip from the edge of the box which had Adrian scrambling, but the score remained the same. Then Rodriguez's deflected effort off Guy Demel had Adrian worried, but hit the roof of the net.
The Hammers hung on for a precious win in the lead up to a difficult away fixture against top four contenders, Everton.
Hull City travel to the Boleyn Ground a week later, which is subject to change depending on their FA Cup success.
West Ham United: Adrian, Demel, Collins, Tomkins, McCartney; Noble, Taylor, Downing, Nolan (Reid 67), Jarvis (Diame 56); Carlton Cole.
Subs not used: Jaaskelainen, Armero, Collison, Joe Cole, Nocerino.
Southampton: Boruc, Chambers, Fonte, Yoshida, Shaw; Schneiderlin, Cork (Ramirez, 62), Lallana, Davis (Ward-Prowse, 72), Rodriguez; Lambert (Gallagher, 72)
Subs not used: Davis, Clyne, Lovren, Do Prado.