West Ham United 1 Preston 2
By Patrick Goss
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Craig Brown's side have now lost only once in 13 league outings, although they fell behind to David Connolly's goal for the Hammers after 19 minutes.
However, Ricardo Fuller's 14th goal in his last 18 league matches levelled it up on 64, before David Healy (pictured) struck the winner three minutes later.
West Ham made a bright start but a succession of corners came to nothing and North End began to assert themselves on the game, Richard Cresswell shooting just wide from the edge of the penalty area.
Nevertheless, it was the home side who took the lead, when Connolly finished off a move started by goalkeeper David James, sweeping in a low shot from Matthew Etherington's cross.
Healy forced James into a smart save and Michael Carrick fired just over from 25 yards as the first half continued to be evenly matched, but the game eventually turned in the 64th minute when Marlon Harewood failed to retreat at a free-kick.
Referee Mark Warren moved the ball forward 10 yards and when Graham Alexander swung in the kick, Chris Lucketti headed across goal for Fuller to nod in.
Three minutes later Alexander drove in a corner and Healy squeezed in a shot at the near post, which went through a crowd of players before beating James.
Alan Pardew threw on veteran striker Brian Deane in search of an equaliser, but it was Preston who came closest to scoring again when Cresswell twice hit the woodwork after tormenting the home defence.