Mar 31, 2014 at 8pm UK at ​Stadium of Light
Sunderland
1-2
West HamWest Ham United
Johnson (65')
Alonso (73'), Wickham (75')
FT(HT: 0-1)
Carroll (9'), Diame (50')
Noble (3'), Nolan (67'), Reid (88'), Adrian (90')

Half-Time Report: Andy Carroll gives West Ham United lead over Sunderland

An early Andy Carroll header gives West Ham a 1-0 lead at the halfway stage of their Premier League encounter with Sunderland at the Stadium of Light this evening.

An early header from Andy Carroll has given West Ham United a 1-0 lead at the halfway stage of their crucial Premier League encounter with struggling Sunderland at the Stadium of Light this evening.

Andy Carroll of West Ham celebrates after scoring the opening goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Sunderland and West Ham United at the Stadium of Light on March 31, 2014© Getty Images

The hosts came close to taking the lead in unorthodox circumstances after just two minutes when Phil Bardsley's cross almost caught Adrian out, flying just past the post.

It was the Hammers who broke the deadlock, however, doing so seven minutes later when Carroll rose well inside the box to power Mark Noble's corner past Vito Mannone.

Sunderland had a fine chance to level things up within three minutes as Ki Sung-Yeung's shot deflected to Lee Cattermole, but the combative midfielder's effort was weak and straight at the keeper.

The visitors came close to a second in the 19th minute when Noble again played the role of creator, setting up Matthew Taylor who put his effort just wide.

That proved to be the last clear chance of the half as West Ham took the lead into the break, leaving Sunderland needing at least two goals to avoid a seventh consecutive match without a win.

Fabio Borini of Sunderland celebrates scoring the opening goal during the Capital One Cup Final between Manchester City and Sunderland at Wembley Stadium on March 2, 2014
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