Stoke City are heading into the international break with a couple more points than anyone expected them to have. Mark Hughes' side and West Ham looked to be playing out a 0-0 draw until a surprise late goal saw Stoke go up 1-0 and go on to take all three points.
The first half got off to a rather promising start, with Stoke creating a few decent chances in the opening half-hour. However, they were unable to capitalize.
Kenwyne Jones looked to be away from the defense in the 10th minute and held off James Collins to get himself into an excellent shooting position just inside the box, but he hit a horrible shot well over the crossbar. In the 22nd minute, Jussi Jaaskelainen came up with a brilliant double save to keep the score level, stopping Charlie Adam's shot from the edge of the penalty area and Marc Wilson's follow-up.
There wasn't much in the rest of the half, with Stoke looking content to keep men behind the ball and the Hammers lacking ideas. West Ham got a bit of a scare in the 48th minute when Winston Reid went down with what appeared to be a serious shoulder injury, but he opted to play on.
Neither team registered a shot on target in the second half until the 82nd minute, when substitute Jermaine Pennant shockingly fired Stoke in front. Reid conceded a free kick on the edge of the box, earning a yellow card in the process, and Pennant made him pay for it with a surprising direct free kick goal.
West Ham: Jaaskelainen, O'Brien, Reid, Collins, Demel, Diame (Elliott 88'), Noble (Collison 84'), Downing (Morrison 64'), Nolan, Jarvis, Maiga
Stoke City: Begovic, Pieters, Huth, Shawcross, Cameron, Nzonzi, Adam (Whelan 76'), Wilson, Etherington (Pennant 76'), Walters, Jones
Goals: Pennant (82').