Barclays Premier League

West Ham stay rock bottom

2011-02-06 18:16
Nikola Zigic (right) celebrates his goal. (AP)

London - Birmingham City climbed out of the relegation zone on Sunday as Nikola Zigic's goal gave them a 1-0 win over West Ham United.

West Ham lie bottom of the table following Wolverhampton Wanderers' shock win over Manchester United on Saturday.

It took extra-time to separate the sides when they met in the Carling Cup semi-final earlier this season, and this was similarly tight.

West Ham looked marginally the more threatening in the first half, but there was little in the way of goalmouth action.

Avram Grant's side lost centre-back Paul Tomkins to a calf injury in the warm-up, and his replacement, Matthew Upson, was forced off at half-time.

Upson had dealt well with Zigic, but it's doubtful he would have been able to prevent the giant Serbian giving Birmingham the lead 20 minutes into the second half, as he met Sebastian Larsson's whipped free-kick with a powerful header.

Demba Ba hit the bar amid late West Ham pressure, but the home side looked severely short of punch.

Fernando Torres makes his Chelsea debut against his former club Liverpool in the day's later kick-off. Luis Suarez was omitted from Liverpool's starting line-up.

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