Cole double helps West Ham off the bottom at Fulham
London: West Ham United claimed their first Premier League away win of the season on Sunday, beating Fulham 3-1 at Craven Cottage to climb off the bottom of the table.
Aaron Hughes headed Fulham into an early lead but Carlton Cole pounced on a loose ball to equalise and Frederic Piquionne’s volley put the visitors in front just before halftime before Cole swept in a third after the break.
Victory lifted some of the pressure on West Ham’s beleaguered manager Avram Grant, whose side have been cemented into the relegation zone for most of the season.
West Ham have 16 points from 19 matches with Wolverhampton Wanderers now bottom on 15. Wolves host second-from-bottom Wigan Athletic (16 points) later on a busy day of action.
Fulham, without a league win since October and sitting just above West Ham in 17th place, also have 16 points and could end the day in the bottom three.
Two of the holiday fixtures succumbed to the freezing weather conditions still gripping the country.
Blackpool’s home game against Liverpool was postponed after their Bloomfield Road pitch, the only one in the top flight without undersoil heating, failed an inspection. It was the club’s third consecutive home game to fall foul of the weather.
Everton’s home game against Birmingham City was postponed after Goodison Park’s water pipes burst.
Later on Sunday, leaders Manchester United host Sunderland while third-placed Manchester City are at Newcastle United.
Second-placed Arsenal are at home to champions Chelsea on Monday before another round of top-flight fixtures throughout the forthcoming week.