LONDON (Reuters) – West Ham United maintained their impressive start to the season when they beat champions Manchester City 2-1 at Upton Park on Saturday to consolidate their place in the top four of the Premier League.
Manager Sam Allardyce described it as “a famous win” after Hammers beat City for the first time in five years for their third successive victory.
The result was a blow for City who could be eight points behind leaders Chelsea if Jose Mourinho’s men win at Manchester United on Sunday.
The Hammers went ahead in the 21st minute when Morgan Amalfitano was left unmarked at the far post and reacted quickest to a low, spinning cross from Enner Valencia to stab the ball in from close range with goalkeeper Joe Hart stranded.
They doubled their lead in the 75th minute when Diafra Sakho became the first West Ham player to score in six successive Premier League matches.
He rose to head powerfully at the goal, and although Hart scooped the ball clear, the goal decision review system proved it had crossed the line and the score stood.
But within two minutes City pulled one back with a superb individual strike from David Silva who jinked his way through the West Ham defence to curl home past Adrian.
City should have scored before then when Sergio Aguero hit the bar from close range after 61 minutes and Yaya Toure’s follow-up was saved by Adrian. Toure hit the bar again a minute before Sakho put the Hammers 2-0 up.
Allardyce told BT Sport: “It wasn’t a lucky victory by any stretch of the imagination today because our commitment and desire to play against the big boys and the present league champions was there for all to see.
“We knew we were going to have less possession than City today but we knew that we had to be effective with the possession we had and we were certainly that.
“After David Silva scored their outstanding goal, for me it was about the squad’s determination and make sure (of) what is a famous victory for us.”
City let a 2-0 lead slip for a 2-2 draw at CSKA Moscow in the Champions League on Tuesday but although Silva revived their hopes on Saturday, they themselves could not fight back from two goals down to save a point and ended up losing in the league for the first time since Aug. 30.
Their coach Manuel Pellegrini said: “West Ham played very well, especially in the first half and they did not allow us to move the ball but we were very unlucky because we had a lot of chances.”
The defeat left City on 17 points from nine matches, five points behind leaders Chelsea before their game on Sunday. West Ham remained fourth on 16 points from their opening nine games.