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Carroll crowns West Ham fightback to sink Saints

Published 28/12/2015

Michail Antonio, right. and Andy Carroll scored as West Ham beat Southampton
Michail Antonio, right. and Andy Carroll scored as West Ham beat Southampton

Andy Carroll climbed off the bench to fire West Ham back to winning ways with a 2-1 success over Southampton.

The Hammers looked as though they would have to settle for a sixth successive draw after Michail Antonio's bizarre equaliser cancelled out a Carl Jenkinson own-goal in the first half.

But Carroll, just back from yet another injury lay-off, floored Southampton with a trademark header to secure a first win in nine matches for Slaven Bilic's side.

It was a game of two halves for the Hammers, who were dreadful in the first but came to life after Carroll and Manuel Lanzini, also back from a spell out, were introduced at half-time.

Southampton, fresh from their 4-0 Boxing Day thumping of Arsenal, took the lead with virtually their first attack of the match after 13 minutes.

A slick move saw Victor Wanyama's header flicked on by Sadio Mane to Steven Davis, who fed Shane Long down the left-hand side of West Ham's penalty area.

Long drove in a low cross and Dusan Tadic got in front of Jenkinson to get a toe on to the ball before it went rolled over the goal-line via the Hammers defender's shin.

Saints went on to boss the rest of the first half and Davis was denied by a brave block from James Collins before the midfielder burst forward again and fired narrowly wide.

Hammers keeper Adrian then did well to keep out a close-range header from Jose Fonte, with Wanyama blasting the rebound high over the crossbar.

Bilic had seen enough by half-time and made his double change, throwing on Lanzini and Carroll for the ineffective Alex Song and Mauro Zarate.

The move almost paid off immediately when Collins met Lanzini's corner, but his header was cleared off the line by Cuco Martina.

Carroll should have scored when the ball came back into the area from Mark Noble, but the striker blazed over from eight yards.

Instead it was Antonio, something of a figure of fun at West Ham this season, who grabbed an equaliser in comical style for his first goal for the club.

The winger, dubbed the 'missing man' after chairman David Gold inadvertently retweeted a photo of him posted by a prankster looking for information about a missing friend, embarked on a mazy run into the area in the 69th minute.

Antonio over-ran the ball and promptly fell over, but when Wanyama charged in to avert the danger his clearance hit Antonio on the head, looped up over Saints keeper Maarten Stekelenburg and into the net.

And Carroll, in front of watching England boss Roy Hodgson, made up for his earlier miss with 11 minutes to go when he nodded in the rebound after Antonio had headed Enner Valencia's cross against a post.

TWEET OF THE MATCH

Andy Carroll's hairstyle is truly remarkable but it didn't stop him nodding one home to give West Ham the lead - @GaryLineker on Andy Carroll's 'eyecatching' new do.

PLAYER RATINGS

WEST HAM

Adrian: 6 (Out of 10)

Carl Jenkinson: 6

James Collins: 6

Angelo Ogbonna: 7

James Tomkins: 6

Cheikhou Kouyate: 6

Mark Noble: 6

Alex Song: 5

Michail Antonio: 7

Enner Valencia: 6

Mauro Zarate: 6

Replacements

Manuel Lanzini: 6

Andy Carroll: 7

Pedro Obiang: 6

SOUTHAMPTON

Maarten Stekelenburg: 6

Cuco Martina: 7

Jose Fonte: 6

Virgil van Dijk: 6

Ryan Bertrand: 6

Steven Davis: 7

Oriol Romeu: 6

Victor Wanyama: 6

Dusan Tadic: 7

Sadie Mane: 6

Shane Long: 7

Replacements

Maya Yoshida: 6

Gaston Ramirez: 6

Juanmi: 6

STAR MAN: Michail Antonio. The 'missing man' was finally found as the winger grabbed a comical equaliser and had a hand in the winner. Is still a raw talent but showed some true glimpses of his potential.

MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Antonio stumbling as he ran into the penalty area, getting the ball smashed at his head by Victor Wanyama and watching it sail in for his first goal for the club.

VIEW FROM THE BENCH: Injury-hit West Ham were horribly disjointed throughout the first half while Southampton, fresh from the 4-0 win over Arsenal on Boxing Day, looked far more balanced and comfortable. But Bilic's subs swung the match West Ham's way after the break.

MOAN OF THE MATCH: Andy Carroll's latest, ludicrous hairstyle. Corn rows on a strapping 26-year-old Geordie? Seriously?

WHO'S UP NEXT?

West Ham v Liverpool (Barclays Premier League, Saturday January 2)

Norwich v Southampton (Barclays Premier League, Saturday January 2).

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