West Ham end season with whimper after defeat to Sunderland
West Ham v Sunderland
West Ham 0 Sunderland 3
Relegated West Ham’s season ended in the manner which so many of their games this season have done so. Disappointing defeat.
In a game which mattered little to either side, Sunderland showed enough quality to claim the three points in a game thanks to first half goals from Bolo Zenden, in his final game for the Black Cats and Stephane Sessegnon.
Hopes that new, young-looking Hammers outfit would breathe life onto the pitch proved to be mis-leading as West Ham struggled throughout the 90 minutes.
West Ham lined-up 4-4-2 with club captain Matthew Upson, Carlton Cole, Demba Ba, Jonathan Spector and Manuel da Costa all missing from the squad.
Temporary boss Kevin Keen elected to line-up 4-4-2 with Frederic Piquionne partnered in attack by Zavon Hines.
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The game began at a frenetic pace and both sides had numerous chances to take the lead.
After five minutes a clearance from James Tomkins rebounded into the path of Asamoah Gyan, who took too long and in the end fired a weak shot at Robert Green.
Two minutes later and it was West Ham’s turn to attack as Hines wriggled free of the last defender but could not beat Sunderland stopper Simon Mignolet, who was forced into making another good save minutes later to deny Freddie Sears.
A goal finally arrived after 17 minutes when Bolo Zenden looped a header into net from an Ahmed Elmohamady cross on final game for club.
After a bright start from both side’s the Dutchman’s goal signalled a dull period of play and neither side really looked like scoring for the rest of the half.
With time up at the end of the opening period Hines turned well and forced a decent save from Mignolet.
The second half started slowly, but from nowhere the visitors made it 2-0.
Sessegnon ran and ran and is custom from the West Ham defence this campaign they back off and from the edge of the box the Benin forward powered his effort into the corner.
Keen responded by brining on Victor Obinna and Lars Jacobsen for a probable final hurrah in West Ham colours, with Hines and Tomkins, who looked to be carrying a back injury, replaced.
The Hammers looked beaten and Jack Colback forced a good save from Green.
Scott Parker was given a Hammers send off replacing Boar Morte with half an hour to play.
Even his presence failed to galvanise the hosts as Christian Riveros made it three by powering an effort past Green late on. The game petered out and West Ham ended their season with defeat and a poor performance to match.
West Ham: Green, Spence, Gabbidon, Tomkins, Bridge, Boa Morte, Collison, Hitzlsperger, Sears, Piquionne.
Subs: Boffin, Parker, Kovac, Stanislas, Obinna, Jacobsen, Tombides.