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Sunday March 1, 2009West Ham United 1 - 0 Manchester City

By William Wood | In Match Reports - Away Games

Micah came off in the first-half due to injury as Manchester City’s poor run away from home continued at West Ham United, with Mark Hughes’ men succumbing to a 1-0 defeat courtesy of Jack Collinson’s second-half winner.

City were looking to build on the impressive 1-1 draw at Liverpool in their previous Premier League outing and the 2-1 win over FC Copenhagen in the Uefa Cup, and seventh-place in the table was up for grabs for both sides ahead of the game.

The Hammers, who played fluid football throughout the afternoon, were the first to test their opponents’ resolve, Herita Ilunga aiming a cross towards Carlton Cole, but Shay Given was alert to the danger and gathered the ball comfortably.

With 10 minutes on the clock, Scott Parker caught Micah with a mistimed challenge that forced the youngster off the field, and the defender received treatment for the remainder of the half.

Robinho almost flicked City in front after he directed a Vincent Kompany volley goal-wards, but an excellent reaction stop from Robert Green kept the scores level.

However, the Brazil international lacked the accuracy demonstrated moments earlier when some fine play by Craig Bellamy allowed Stephen Ireland to flash the ball back across goal.

The forward, two yards from goal, somehow managed to miss the target, however, while at the other end Cole’s hesitancy after a fine run by Valon Behrami saw a clear opportunity go to waste.

That was to be the last piece of action for the latter, though, as a sickening injury to his knee and ankle saw him stretchered from the field, with the crowd applauding a player they may not see again this season.

David Di Michele, who looked lively throughout the duration of the game, continued West Ham’s pressure as he turned and shot from the edge of the box, but Given was once again equal to it as he palmed the ball away from goal.

It was much of the same after the break, and the home side could have gone in front 90 seconds after the re-start after a fine move.

Collison instigated the play before laying the ball off to Cole, who in turn found Di Michele, but the Italian’s curling cross towards the Wales international was just inches too high.

The Lancashire-outfit seemingly lacked inspiration, with even Robinho’s trademark step-overs doing little to arouse the City attack, and with 20 minutes remaining Gianfranco Zola’s men found a way through.

The lightning-quick Savio unleashed a swerving effort that Given palmed only as far as the six-yard box, and Collison was their to lift the ball over the Republic of Ireland stopper and into the back of the net.

Substitute Elano combined with Robinho, only for the former Real Madrid man to side-foot wide of the post once again, while Felipe Caicedo had equal bad-luck on two separate occasions.

As the seconds ticked away, Elano then saw his free-kick strike the post with the aid of Lucas Neill’s deflection, and that was that for a Jekyl and Hyde City team who remain in search of only their second victory away from home.
Manchester