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14:49 18th September 2010

Stoke City 1 West Ham United 1

STOKE CITY were left cursing their misfortune as they hit the woodwork three times in having to settle for a draw in their televised match against West Ham United.

Although record signing Kenwyne Jones scored for the second successive home game, he was one of three players to be denied by the bar and post as the Potters pressed hard in their attempt to make it two successive victories at the Britannia Stadium this week.

The Hammers had gone in front in the 32nd minute when England midfielder Scott Parker bundled the ball home from close range from a free kick, but Jones cancelled that out with a header early in the second half following good approach work from Jermaine Pennant.

But City had their chances to grab all three points, and as well as Jones hitting the post, Robert Huth and Ricardo Fuller also saw efforts crash against the woodwork.

Pulis had made just the one change to his starting line-up, handing a full debut to Pennant in place of another new boy Marc Wilson, who dropped to the bench.

Some of City's brightest moments in the early stages stemmed from the runs of Pennant down the right hand side as he caused problems for the West Ham defence.

There were, however, few clearcut opportunities and it was the Hammers who threatened first when Victor Obinna's volley was deflected into the arms of Sorensen.

The first real attempt at goal by City came from a free kick delivered by Pennant into the box that fell into the path of Jones who unfortunately sliced his effort wide.

They then saw Monday's matchwinner Robert Huth hit the post with a close range effort after Green had fumbled a free kick delivered into the box by Pennant.

After a bright opening, the Potters struggled to mount any real pressure for a period and it was West Ham who took the lead in the 32nd minute from a free kick on the right.

Obinna whipped it into the six yard box from a tight angle and in a goalmouth scramble, Rory Delap's clearance rebounded to Parker who tucked it away from close range.

West Ham could have gone further ahead a minute later when Ferederic Piquionne burst forward, cut inside and unleashed a long range drive that hit the bar.

There was one chance for City to level in the remainder of the first half and it came from one of Delap's long throws launched into the box for Johnson to head over.

The Potters did get themselves back on level terms shortly after the break when Pennant burst down the right onto a ball from Jon Walters and floated over a deep cross to the far post where Jones coming in managed to force it over the line with his header.

Such a swift response after the break lifted the whole stadium and City could have gone in front moments later when Jones slipped the ball into the path of Etherington but his fiercely struck left foot shot was deflected over the bar.

For the second time in the game, they were then denied by the woodwork as Jones cut in from the left after latching onto a crossfield ball from Pennant and unleashed a powerful drive that Green managed to deflect onto the post with a one-handed save.

West Ham had been forced to defend for long periods in the second half but when they got some respite, they had chances to go in front themselves.

Sorensen had to make two important saves, the first diving low to his right to keep out a shot from Obinna and reflex save to keep out a Gabbidon header.

City hit the woodwork again in the 81st minute when substitute Fuller's downward header from a Delap throw beat Green but rebounded out off the bar.

Green had to tip an Etherington shot over the bar at full stretch when the winger tried to catch him off his line with a chip from just inside the box and that proved to be the last chance of the game, despite some pressure from the home side in injury time.

    Data provided by Press Association


    The Potters played out four replays to finally beat Bury in the FA Cup in 1955