West Ham 1-2 Everton

Steven Pienaar
Steven Pienaar

Everton came from behind to beat West Ham United and move back into fourth place as both sides ended with 10 men at Upton Park.

Carlton Cole gave West Ham an early lead but was then shown a hotly-contested red card for a high challenge on Leighton Baines after the interval.

Victor Anichebe had already headed Everton level after 64 minutes and they cashed in on West Ham's numerical disadvantage when Steven Pienaar scrambled in what proved to be the winner shortly after Cole was sent off.

Everton had opportunities to increase their lead but Kevin Nolan squandered a late opportunity to equalise for West Ham as they attempted to overcome the handicap of Cole's dismissal to earn a point.

Darron Gibson was also sent off in stoppage time by referee Anthony Taylor after a collision with Mark Noble that had to be met with similar punishment to Cole - leaving both managers unhappy at the final whistle.

West Ham manager Sam Allardyce will feel his side suffered an injustice, but Everton counterpart David Moyes will view this as a vital three points as they continue to battle at the top end of the table.

Everton were missing Marouane Fellaini, who started a three-game suspension after headbutting Stoke's Ryan Shawcross, but still started brightly.

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Referee cost us game - Allardyce

Sylvain Distin should have done better than head down and over the top from Baines's free-kick - then Everton saw a goal ruled out in contentious circumstances.

The diminutive figure of Leon Osman rose to head in a corner from Baines but, much to Everton's obvious fury, the celebrations were halted by a linesman's flag. It looked like Anichebe had been penalised for impeding goalkeeper Jussi Jaaskelainen but Anichebe would counter but saying he was simply standing his ground.

Everton's frustration deepened as Cole gave West Ham the lead soon after, escaping John Heitinga far too easily and shooting low past Tim Howard.

The Merseysiders emerged with far more intent after the break and Nikica Jelavic should have equalised when the ball broke to him eight yards out after a penalty area scramble but the Croat could only shoot straight at Jaaskelainen.

Everton's pressure was mounting, however, and they restored parity when Anichebe got a glancing touch on to Pienaar's cross to leave Jaaskelainen helpless.

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Everton just about deserved win - Moyes

If Everton thought they had been harshly treated by Osman's disallowed goal, West Ham were left nursing an equal sense of injustice when Cole was sent off in the 66th minute. The striker's foot was raised in a challenge with Baines and he caught the England defender, but there was still surprise when referee Taylor produced the red card.

And to make matters worse for West Ham, Everton were soon in front as Pienaar scrambled in a finish at the near post after Osman had made inroads into the penalty area.

Jelavic's assured finishing took had deserted him in a poor personal performance and he could only find the sidenetting when presented with a chance to wrap up Everton's victory.

Nolan was West Ham's main danger in the closing stages and twice had opportunities to equalise, once with a shot that was deflected inches wide then when he uncharacteristically off target when clean through.