Match Analysis: West Ham United 0-0 Sunderland

Fabio Borini of Sunderland is challenged by George McCartney of West Ham during the Barclays Premier League match between West Ham United and Sunderland at Boleyn Ground on December 14, 2013
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Sports Mole analyses the Premier League clash between West Ham United and Sunderland at Upton Park.

West Ham United and Sunderland played out a goalless draw in their Premier League clash at Upton Park.

The Black Cats had the better of the openings in the first half as Phil Bardsley saw his effort from long range clatter off the crossbar.

Gus Poyet's side upped the ante after the break but couldn't beat Jussi Jaaskelainen while the Hammers threatened late in the game but it ended 0-0, a result neither side wanted.

Sports Mole analyses the clash at Upton Park to see how the result came to be.

Match statistics:

West Ham:
Shots 11
On target 2
Possession 42%
Corners 2
Fouls 10

Sunderland:
Shots 19
On target 6
Possession 58%
Corners 9
Fouls 5

Was the result fair?

Sunderland had the better chances and will be kicking themselves for not winning the game on the balance of play. There were far better in possession than the home side, who offered very little all game in the attacking third of the pitch as Vito Mannone was barely troubled. Gus Poyet will definitely see this as an opportunity to take three points missed while Sam Allardyce will be delighted to see his side come out of this one unscathed.

West Ham's performance

West Ham will be glad to get out of this game with a point. They looked bereft of ideas in the attacking third of the pitch and were reduced to knocking hopeful balls into the box which Modibo Maiga failed to capitalise on. The striker is not Andy Carroll and doesn't thrive on that sort of service but that didn't stop the Hammers from plugging away with that tactic, which didn't have any success all afternoon. Defensively they did enough to stop Sunderland from scoring but that was more down to the Black Cats' lack of potency in front of goal more than anything. This performance will worry Allardyce as they were pretty much outplayed by the team that's bottom of the table.

Sunderland's performance

Poyet will be delighted with the way his side played as dominated possession and carved out multiple chances. The only thing missing was the goal and that was their downfall as several players missed good opportunities, none more so than Jozy Altidore in the fifth minute when he fired wide when played through on goal. The play of Ki Sung-Yeung along with Lee Cattermole in the middle will please the Uruguayan as well, as they controlled the middle of the park and set up numerous attacks. Defensively they were sound but were not tested; however, given their start to the season at the back another clean sheet will be welcome by Poyet.

Sports Mole's man of the match

Ki Sung-Yeung: The South Korean was excellent all afternoon as he was accurate with his passing and really made Sunderland tick going forward. The only thing that was missing from his game as well the Black Cats performance was a goal but he was denied by a good save from Jussi Jaaskelainen. If he continues to put in those sort of performances it will help Poyet's side move away from danger.

Biggest gaffe

Jozy Altidore had the chance to hand Sunderland an early lead as he collected Emanuele Giaccherini's through-ball as he beat the offside trap, but his shot was saved by Jaaskelainen when he should have found the net. That was a glorious chance for the Black Cats and one that may have cost them two points.

Referee performance

An uneventful game for Andre Marriner as he handed out just the one yellow card to Mark Noble for sending Fabio Borini flying into the air with a high boot. He went around the field quietly and didn't disrupt the flow of the game at all with his whistle. As good a performance as there is from an official.

What next?

West Ham: The Hammers take on Tottenham Hotspur in the Capital One Cup on Wednesday at White Hart Lane.

Sunderland: Poyet's side take on one of his old clubs on Tuesday also in the quarter-finals of the League Cup when they face Chelsea at the Stadium of Light.

Fabio Borini of Sunderland is challenged by George McCartney of West Ham during the Barclays Premier League match between West Ham United and Sunderland at Boleyn Ground on December 14, 2013
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