Date: 22nd February 2011 at 9:09am
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The Clarets were heavily defeated in the FA Cup 5th Round clash against West Ham at the Boleyn Ground last night allowing the Hammers to get a nap over them in a 5-1 thrashing. It was strangely a game of two halves and Burnley were actually the dominate team in the first half with Hammers keeper, Robert Green saving their bacon three times in the first 20 minutes . Had we taken the lead in the first half it may have been a different story but we didn`t and we fell to a goal from debutant Thomas Hitzlsperger on 23 minutes. The thunderbolt cruelly undid all the hard work that Burnley had put in during the opening first quarter of the game. Even then it didn`t seem to phase the Clarets and at half-time we still looked very much in the game.

That soon all changed though in the second half after Carlton Cole scored a brace within two minutes to make it 3-0 with still 40 minutes to play. The Clarets fell apart with West Ham now getting by far the Lion`s share of possession and Eddie Howe powerless to do anything in a match that was rapidly developing into easily his worst game in charge since arriving at the club in January. Clarets fans were getting a reminder of last season and what it was like to play against Premier League opposition, even one now struggling in the top flight relegation zone. West Ham put five past us last season at Upton Park although at least then we did put on a spurt in the latter stages to score three in the end. There would be nothing like that this time. A Winston Reid header made it 4-0 to West Ham after 59 minutes and now it looked like a real tonking was in store for the lacklustre, shell-shocked Clarets.

Jay Rodriguez though had other ideas and saved a few blushes by scoring in the 71st Minute but West Ham had the last word completing a terrible night for the Clarets and scoring their fifth goal three minutes into added time with Freddie Sears getting on the score sheet.

Eddie Howe going into this game decided to put Jay Rodriguez alone up front and bring back Wade Elliott. David Edgar also made the subs` bench after his loan deal at Swansea fell through recently. New signings Charlie Austin and Marvin Bartley though were both cup tied and had to sit this one out.

In summary then we lined up as follows:

Grant, Mears, Duff, Carlisle, Fox, Cork, Marney, Elliott, Wallace Eagles Rodriguez

Subs: Jensen, Alexander, Edgar, Bikey, Easton, Iwelumo, Thompson

West Yorkshire referee, Martin Atkinson got the game underway and it was the Clarets who made the more promising start. Rodriguez spurned the opportunity to score on 13 minutes and should have done better with his tame shot. Hammers keeper, Robert Green, moments later could then only parry a fierce Wallace shot on the edge of the penalty area to Rodriguez. Green though then somehow made an instinctive save to deny the England Under 21 international from close range.

We should have taken our opportunities because Burnley were now on the back foot with the Hammers finally getting into the game and getting more of the possession.

The Clarets were now getting ripped apart by the midfield trio of Scott Parker, Mark Noble and Thomas Hitzlsperger and Burnley now found it more and more difficult to get back into the game.

The Hammers dominance paid off in the 23rd minute with a spectacular long-range goal. Hitzlsperger cut in from the right as a gap opened up in front of the Burnley defence to unleash a powerful, dipping 25 yard drive with his left foot. Grant had no chance and the Hammers were 1-0 up.

Burnley were now under the cosh but managed to soak up most of the pressure and indeed at this stage of the match were still in the game. A smart flick from Rodriguez found Eagles but his low shot was saved by Green. Mears then outpaced Wayne Bridge down the wing picking up a pass threaded through to him by Wallace. Cutting the ball back to Rodriguez, James Tomkins intervened with a well-times interception.

Burnley went in then at half-time just the one goal down and they were certainly still in with a chance at this stage having played some attractive football at times. The second half Hammer Horror show though was just about to begin for the Clarets.

Just three minutes into the restart, West Ham doubled their lead following some clever build-up play. Mark Noble found a perfect pass with his right foot to find Cole but the joint leading Hammers goal scorer made a hash of it with his second touch. Grant looked to have smothered the ball but Cole picked himself up to scramble the ball home from close range. The goal incensed the Clarets faithful. Not only did Cole look offside following the pass but he also appeared to have handled the ball after the ball clearly hit his arm just before shooting. The goal stood though and two minutes later the Clarets had a mountain to climb when Cole scored again. There were no controversial circumstances this time though.

Noble again split the Burnley defence and this time Cole picked up the pass with a deft touch beating the offside trap before lobbing the ball over Grant into the roof of the net.

Burnley had no answer now to the Hammers complete dominance and on 59 minutes Reid found space to get in a glancing header from a Hitzlsperger’s corner to make it 4-0.

It was now all about damage-limitation for the Clarets with the game lost. Rodriguez though at least restored some pride. After blazing over from 20 yards he then had another opportunity which this time he took to make it 4-1 under somewhat bizarre circumstances. Wayne Bridge should have cleared his lines but instead tried a back pass to Green which went terribly wrong for the England international. Green had little time to avert the danger and his clearance hit the back of Mears with the ball popping up nicely to find Rodriguez ideally placed to nod home in front of an empty net.

It was just a consolation goal though and three minutes into added time West Ham completed a miserable night for the Clarets . Once again the Burnley defence failed to clear allowing Freddie Sears to slot the ball home from 15 yards out.

So the FA Cup dream is over and the only way we will get to Wembley now this season is via the play-offs. At least now we can focus on that without any cup distractions and additional games.

Match Stats

West Ham: Green, Reid, Tomkins, Bridge, Jacobsen, Parker, Hitzlsperger (Barrera 67) ,Noble, Cole (Spector 73), Sears, Ba (Piquionne 82)

Subs Not Used: Boffin, Da Costa, Boa Morte, Hines

Goals: Hitzlsperger 23, Cole 48, 50, Reid 59, Sears 90+3

Booked: 0

Burnley: Grant, Mears, Duff, Carlisle, Fox, Cork, Marney (Alexander 72), Elliott, Wallace (Iwelumo 73), Eagles (Thompson 84), Rodriguez

Subs Not Used: Jensen, Edgar, Bikey, Easton

Goal: Rodriguez 71

Booked: Yellow Cards for Elliott, Rodriguez

Possession: 59% West Ham, 41% Burnley (Source: BBC Sport)

Ref: Martin Atkinson (West Yorkshire)


8 Replies to “Clarets Caught Napping by West Ham in FA Cup.”

  • Absolutely shocking display by the clarets last night, if the aspirations where for premier league football then this was a big wake up call, West Ham bottom of the Prem and we get stonked 5-1, what’s that all about.

    What’s happening with Andre Bickey??? WHY is he not being included in this squad, Elliot simply awful last night and Grant made some good saves but equally was disappointing on some of the ones he let in, Foxie …. well it’s ok pushing forward but has he forget first and foremost he’s a defender this was a simply awful performance…………… ya not gonna like it! but questions need to be asked ?

  • I like what Eddie Howe said after the game . You can say it was maybe a bad decision for the 1st goal ( Handball & Offside ) but ultimately you have to look at your own performance. Well Said Eddie. Now lets get this out of our system and regroup for the Preston game.
    Also after Grants awful display, lets give Jensen the nod in goal.

  • Tbh we should have been at least 2 up imo in the first half. Was the linesman asleep coz he missed about 4 clear offside shouts what i saw. The 2nd haf we hit the self-destuct button & all hope of getting back in it gone within 5 mins shocking defending hmm defending bit too strong a word.

  • Didn’t really enjoy last night at all. We got there far too early as the tube from Westminster was very quiet but with a couple of little lads with us we couldn’t do much but go inside the ground. Tickets truly woeful – even worse than last year. First half was ok but we weren’t at the races in the second period. Thought Cole’s first goal was offside and it was interesting that they didn’t show the replay on the big screen. But really it wouldn’t have made any difference as The Irons were by far the better side. A few of our lads were off form and, once again, Eagles showed that he just lacks a bit of all round consistency and quality. Brilliant one minute, lazy and disinterested the next. Never mind, at least we don’t have to go to Stoke.

  • Forget it and move on. We are much better than this performance, now we have to get out there and prove it with a god win at preston. 4-4-2

  • It was never a 5-1 score in that everything went west hams way it should have been closer than that.

  • after this season its time for Burnley to say thank you for your service to Elliott, Carlisle and Duff. We need to inject some new blood into the team which includes some pace at the heart of the defence as we seem to have to defend within our own 18 yard box to avoid being beaten at the back for pace. Grant took a lot of the blame for the goals and rightly so for the first and fourth but would Jensen have done any better? I’m not sure.

  • Mid table championship players are the ones we need to ship out. I could add a couple more names to the 3 from andy. You only need to look at how well Robbie, Caldwell and Jordan are doing to see how valued they are in their new teams! Thats 3 more names for mid table championship starters.

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