In the ninth edition of our Classic Match series, once again, we dig deep into the archives to relive a memorable encounter from the past, this time around, we look back at a certain meeting with tonight’s opposition at Wembley Stadium in Tottenham Hotspur.
Cast your minds back to the early autumn of 2013, “Talk Dirty” by Jason Derulo was on top of the British Music Charts and the 2017 Rugby World Cup was about to begin in England.
Meanwhile, in the world of Football and the Premier League, to be more specific, West Ham United were enjoying their second season back in the Top-Flight following Promotion from the Championship in May 2012.
With Sam Allardyce still at the helm, the Hammers had made a sluggish start to the campaign, only recording one win by the start of October and sitting 16th in the Standings.
Early in that month, and off the back of a 1-0 away defeat to Hull City, they travelled to face off with Andre Villas-Boas’ Tottenham at White Hart Lane, the renewing of a London Derby rivalry.
Spurs had started the campaign in considerably better fashion, occupying second position by that stage and defeating Anzhi Makhachkala in Russia in their last slice of action before that, a Europa League encounter just four days previously.
The North London club had held Chelsea at home in their last League outing and headed into the affair, to be played un a sunny Sunday afternoon, buzzing with confidence.
At the announcement of the two starting Xl’s, an hour before kick-off at the Lane, each team’s danger men could be spotted clearly, the stars with the capacity the game.
For the home side, tricky Norwegian winger Cristian Eriksen and ex-Hammers striker Jermain Defoe were set to prove a handful, while the midfield duo of young prodigy Ravel Morrison and the skillful Mo Diame posed a threat for the visitors.
Against the noisy backdrop of chanting back and forth between the home and away supporters, the racy encounter began, with Boas’ men enjoying most of the early pressure.
However, as the second period began, Allardyce’s men started to create in front of goal and their reward duly arrived in the 66th minute of the end-to-end affair.
A corner from Mark Noble found its way to Winston Reid, whose goal-bound header cannoned off Captain Kevin Nolan on the line and fell back to the Kiwi who slammed home past Hugo Lloris.
It was only the third League goal that the Frenchman had conceded that campaign, but little did he know that he would be picking the ball out of the net once more just six minutes later.
Noble, once again creating, was able to slip in Portuguese striker Ricardo Vaz Te in on the left side, with just Lloris to beat, the keeper got in the way, although the ball rebounded back off his shin and into the back of the net.
By this stage, the travelling Claret & blue Army were delirious in their corner of the Ground, a slice of luck had doubled the unlikely advantage, but there was absolutely no fortune in the way that the third goal was netted just before the 80-minute mark.
Diame’s deft touch was able to halt a Tottenham attack and lay the ball into the path of Morrison, the youngster’s pace took him past many a home defender before he rounded Michael Dawson to get one-on-one.
If his run had been genius, his finish was a pure masterpiece in the form of a precise chip that lifted the ball over Lloris, eventually rolling over the line to wrap up three points of unimaginable magnitude.
The defeat would prove to be the beginning of the end for Villas-Boas as his team’s form demised and he was sacked before Christmas, the Lilywhites eventually going on to finish in sixth place under Tim Sherwood.
Meanwhile, it would take until February to steady the ship in East London for Allardyce, he would in the end and the East Londoners finished in 13th position, comfortably clear of the drop zone, that afternoon proving one of the highlights of his tenure in charge of West Ham.
But, will David Moyes be able to replicate a feat achieved by him and Slaven Bilic this evening at Wembley Stadium by beating Spurs away from home? Think you know? Head over to @MooreThanAClub on Twitter to cast your last-minute score predictions and join the pre-match discussion.