West Ham 3-1 Swansea: Carroll roars back with first 2 goals since March (video)

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The Hammers keep on rolling, and with ample attacking options at their disposal, the most maligned of the bunch burst back onto the scene at Upton Park to secure a 2-1 win over Swansea City.

West Ham began on the front foot and forced a good amount of defending from Swansea in the opening 20 minutes, with Alex Song and Carl Jenkinson giving service to the box for Andy Carroll.

On 17 minutes, a free kick produced a furious moment in the Swansea box that saw half-chances for Kevin Nolan and James Tomkins

But just two minutes later, it went all wrong. A counterattack for the visitors – their first real foray into the West Ham area – went Sigurdsson – Montero – Bony and bang Swansea were in front. A great run by Gylfi Sigurdsson played through Jefferson Montero, and the Ecuadorian produced a fantastic cutback to Bony in space between the West Ham defenders, and he crashed it home easily for the lead.

Bony has been vitally important for Swansea since joining the previous summer. The Ivorian striker has been directly involved in over 50% of Swansea’s goals this 2014 calendar year, with 19 goals and five assists.

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The game continued as it was, with West Ham owning all of the pressure but Swansea the biggest real chance. The visitors again produced a dangerous counter-attack that produced a quality shot for Sigurdsson from outside the box, but West Ham keeper Adrian was there to parry it away.

Bony was there again on the half-hour mark with a venomous shot after a more progressive approach but it curled just wide past a diving Adrian.

The visitors, though, have seen leads evaporate all season, and did just that before halftime. A vicious cross from Carl Jenkinson down the right flew across to the far edge of the box where Andy Carroll was waiting. One of the Premier League’s best headers of the ball leaped high in the air to strike home from a good distance out and equalize before the break with the striker’s first goal since March.

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Despite drawing level before the break, Sam Allardyce had made a change at halftime, changing strikers and bringing on Diafra Sakho who made an immediate impact. The Senegalese striker won a corner, and it would lead to the difference-making moment. Carroll picked up another free header after losing Ashley Williams in the box, and he buried it into the back of the net for a 2-1 lead.

Sakho then had a moment of his own moments later, picking out a long ball from the back, and with only a defender to beat, Lukaz Fabianski decided to come off his line. His challenge pushed Sakho further towards the baseline, and referee Chris Foy called it back to send off Fabianski for denying a clear goalscoring opportunity.

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The Hammers would kill the game off as time wound down, with Sakho thundering home on a breakaway four minutes from full time.  It sent West Ham home with all three points, launching them up to third in the Premier League table, a wonderful story. Meanwhile, Swansea remain at the back-end of the top 10, in eighth and five points behind today’s opponents.

LINEUPS:

West Ham: Adrian, Jenkinson (O’Brien 79′), Cresswell, Tomkins, Reid, Song, Kouyate (Collins 86′), Nolan, Downing, Valencia (Sakho 45′), Carroll.

Goals: Carroll 41′, 66′; Sakho 87′

Swansea: Fabianski, Rangel (Dyer 86′), Bartley, Williams, Richards, Britton (Tremmel 70′), Ki, Routledge, Sigurdsson, Montero (Gomis 75′), Bony.

Goals: Bony 19′
Discipline: Fabianski (straight red) 68′