David Hautzig's Match Report

West Ham 0, Burnley 1. Back Towards The Abyss

I normally cannot do reports for midweek matches because I would be hopping from one customer to another selling lovely fermented grapes. But today, I guess luckily for me, there were no customers available. With my country pretty much on fire, I wasn’t that surprised that a traveling salesman could be skipped for a day. In retrospect, I would have welcomed the time away from the TV.

The starting eleven had one change with Yarmolenko in for Lanzini. While I understood the argument, I was worried that the Ukrainian would be exhausted by the hour mark and that his role as a “super sub” had worked so why change? Perhaps linking up with the engine that is Antonio was what Moyes had in mind.

Burnley should have taken an early lead when Vydra held up the ball nicely inside the West Ham eighteen yard box and laid off a pass for Pieters ten yards out. But with time and space at his grasp, he skied his shot over the bar. Moments later West Ham won a free kick that Pope couldn’t keep hold of, but West Ham couldn’t take advantage and the threat ended with an ambitious but fruitless attempt by Ogbonna. Down the other end it was Burnley with a chance from a set piece, but despite a good delivery Vydra didn’t produce much power and Fabianski made the easy save.

West Ham had a good spell on the ball midway through the half, with Soucek particularly impressive. He moved the ball side to side, and when he lost possession he fought to get it back. He cam very close to giving The Hammers the lead when Fredericks put a cross into the box that Soucek got to, but his point blank volley was right at Pope. Seconds later it was Antonio who tested the Burnley keeper, who put the temporary striker’s attempt out for a corner. The home side was huffing and puffing, but the Burnley house was holding firm.

The Hammers had another opportunity in the 35th minute when Antonio went on a good run down the left, cut inside and tried to find Yarmolenko in the box. He did, but the pass had a bit too much on it and Yarmolenko couldn’t one time it. And when a Burnley defender is given a millisecond to regroup he will often get the job done. Long did that job.

The breakthrough came for the visitors in the 38th when Taylor put in a fine cross for Rodriguez, who headed it past Fabianski against the run of play.

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West Ham 0
Burnley 1

West Ham should have equalized seconds later when Antonio beat the Burnley defenders and was in on goal alone. But he put somehow put the ball wide when virtually anywhere else would have done.

Halftime
West Ham 0
Burnley 1

Burnley started the second half on the front foot, winning an early corner after a good buildup down the left. A floated ball into the box was put out for a corner by Soucek but West Ham got through it unscathed. But instead of growing into the second half the way they did in the opening forty-five minutes, West Ham looked uncomfortable. Balls went astray, players looked out of position. An opportunity to solidify survival was turning into a drop back down into a possible abyss. And to make matters worse, Chris Wood came in for Vydra with plenty of time left for him to stick yet another dagger through our collective hearts.

Burnley were very lucky not to be down to ten men when Tarkowski literally put the bottom of his boot into the left knee of Bowen. At first glance I was very, very concerned about a serious injury to our latest signing but thankfully he was OK. He even took a corner a few minutes later.

With the rain pouring down, Moyes made his first substitution in the 62nd minute when Yarmolenko gave way for Haller. And seconds later the Frenchman should have scored when the ball fell to him right in front of goal. His point blank shot went off Pope’s foot and out for a corner. But it should have been a goal.

A few minutes later Taylor put a low cross into the box that found Wood. But for the grace of some kind of higher power he didn’t score, putting a light effort into the arms of Fabianski.

West Ham probed and pondered, winning a corner that they took short and eventually won a less useful throw in. Antonio tried to turn a Long and make a run along the end line. But his touch betrayed him, and Burnley had a goal kick. Tick tick tick went the clock.

While I often cannot stomach the last minutes of a match like this, today I had a legitimate reason. In the 81st minute UPS arrived at my house with an important package that needed a signature, and since it was refrigerated needed to be unpacked immediately. My wife was on a call, so leaving it in the garage was not an option. I was back inside to see Haller on the ground, lambasted by Efan Ekoku for staying down and not being injured.

Final Score
West Ham 0
Burnley 1

I think we can officially call Burnley a Bogey team now. It doesn’t seem to matter if we play better than them. They find a way to get it done. And what felt like it may be a day to put serious daylight between us and the drop zone turned out to be a day that could see us back up into the Abyss.

The West Ham Way is getting very, very old.

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David Hautzig's Match Report

Newcastle 2, West Ham 2. A Bit More Space.

Soon after the final whistle on Wednesday, my best mate Jon showed me a text he sent to El Jefe, Iain;

“Iain. As Hautzig yet again proved that good things happen to us in a relegation battle when Dave DOESN’T watch the match, please confirm that you have *%#@-canned him from writing any further games this season. We are all grateful for your sacrifice.”

I’ll tell you, the thought definitely crossed my mind. I have had far better luck when ignoring this club than when paying attention. My most famous run of form was the Great Escape, when I didn’t watch or listen to a single second of any of the final nine matches. My current infamous run is being winless in every trip I’ve taken to the London Stadium. Four defeats and one lone draw. But Iain didn’t reply to Jon, so here I am, worried about shirking my pseudo-journalistic responsibility’s. I think had I chosen to do yard work this morning we would have won.

After his winning goal on Wednesday, there was chatter about whether or not Yarmolenko should start today. Bowen has played very, very well since his move from Hull so he kept his spot in the starting eleven. Early on he justified that choice when he ran onto a rolling pass from Fornals and put the ball across the Newcastle eighteen yard box. Fernandez should have put the ball far from danger, but he completely fluffed his lines and Antonio had the ball all alone in front of Dubravka. Sometimes with that much time a player, not just Antonio, can panic. Not today.

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Newcastle 0
West Ham 1

Five minutes later Newcastle were awarded a free kick from about 25 yards out, right near the top of the Hammers penalty area. Gayle took the free kick and went low. The ball took a deflection off the wall and forced Fabianski to change direction and make a good save low to his right. Moments later West Ham were back on the attack, and Rice sent a looping pass that Antonio chased down and got a shot on goal that Dubravka handled easily.

The visitors lead didn’t last that long. In the 18th minute, Newcastle broke and then broke down the West Ham defense. Saint-Maximin sent a pass off the outside of his right foot to a streaking Krafth on the right. Nobody on the West Ham defense tracked former MLS star Almiron running into the box, and when Krafth rolled the ball in front of goal Almiron was there to direct it in.

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Newcastle 1
West Ham 1

In the way Traore of Wolves instills pure terror in defenders (not to mention opposition supporters), Saint-Maximin has a similar effect. In the 27th minute he won a free kick after a strong run, and when Shelvey stepped up to take the set piece I was decidedly anxious. But Diop cleared the delivery and West Ham seemed to be settling down from giving up the equalizer.

West Ham started to apply a little pressure, and after a good ball from Rice to Cresswell, the West Ham left back took a low shot that Bowen was able to get a touch on that forced a fine save from Dubravka. That started a decent stretch on the ball for West Ham. They moved the ball around, tracked back when losing possession, but couldn’t get a clear shot on goal. A free kick from Cresswell won a corner, which Bowen inexplicably took short, but the Hammers were able to work the ball back into the box for a headed attempt by Antonio.

Halftime
Newcastle 1
West Ham 1

As the second half began, I finished my sourdough toast with butter and raspberry jam and fretted over the corner conceded by Ogbonna. Thankfully we defended well and breakfast wasn’t ruined.

Early in the second half, the camera showed Noble speaking to Nolan prior to coming on as a substitute. But with West Ham looking much better in terms of pressure and closing down, I couldn’t understand the thinking there with the game level. Moments later Noble replaced Lanzini, who certainly didn’t look on his game but to my mind still offered a better opportunity for a second goal than the captain.

From his first match for us in January, Soucek was one of the reasons going down would be awful. Losing him to relegation would be a bitter pill. Fredericks won a corner in 62nd minute, and the delivery found Rice on the far post. His header went off the bar and right to Soucek, who calmly put it in the back of the net.

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Newcastle 1
West Ham 2

Awareness. Where is everyone on the pitch? While Fornals has shown glimpses of quality, and I think he could become a very good player, he does lose his concentration often. A minute after the jubilation of taking the lead, Fornals played Gayle onside in front of Fabianski. A give and go with Shelvey followed and the often rumored to be coming to East London midfielder slotted the ball past Fabianski.

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Newcastle 2
West Ham 2

With ten minutes left, Newcastle made a substitution. Before kickoff, Nigel Kahn texted me with a prediction that Man Bun would score against us. He also predicted a draw. At 2-2 late, I could see one of those two predictions coming true. But not both. I started to get very, very nervous.

West Ham came close to scoring a third in the 84th minute when Soucek and Yarmolenko worked together very well at the top of the Newcastle eighteen yard box. The interplay culminated with a great shot by Yarmolenko that Dubravka blocked but couldn’t hold onto. The ensuing corner was handled by Newcastle, and the idea of holding onto the draw started to feel comforting.

West Ham attacked again late, with Bowen winning a corner in the 89th minute. Noble took the set piece, but even though Dubravka couldn’t hold onto the ball Newcastle was able to clear the ball and hold onto it at midfield. The final minutes of the match ticked away, with neither side threatening the opposition goal.

Final Score
Newcastle 2
West Ham 2

Seeing how quickly West Ham gave up the lead on two occasions today, it’s not difficult to understand why the Hammers have given up more points from winning positions than any other team in the league. Still, a point away from home at a place we normally leave empty handed is nothing to completely frown on. As they say, beggars can’t be choosy. We are farther away from the drop now than we were when the day started, and barring a miracle from Villa at Anfield safety is statistically closer now than it was.

We are West Ham.

That is in and of itself a win.


David Hautzig's Match Report

Spurs 2. West Ham 0. Weep For Our Future.

Midweek games are usually a treat. I am often at work and listen on the radio in the car, or I catch the second half after picking my son up from school. Iain also knows that reports on such days are basically impossible. But with working from home a way of life now and no school pickup needed, today should be something to enjoy. But after Saturday, watching this entirely uninspired group falls well below mowing the lawn or folding laundry. Relegation could put an end to all of that with far fewer games from The Championship televised over here.

Strangely, the match started with an opportunity for the visitors when Cresswell sent a pass into the box that Antonio chested down and laid off for Noble. But the captain could not control the ball, and instead of a point blank shot it was just a blank, rolling to Lloris. The first ten minutes rolled on without much incident, but West Ham did look better than they did on Saturday.

Spurs pushed forward and won a corner in the 13th minute when Aurier tried a low cross that Diop nervously put behind. But the delivery went over everyone, and considering our generally awful defending on set pieces it was hard not to feel like that in and of itself was a let off for West Ham.

By the 20th minute, it certainly looked like nil-nil was what Moyes had gone to bed dreaming about. Yes, West Ham looked organized and potentially hard to break down. But Antonio looked a bit more than socially distanced up front, and it was hard to envision The Hammers creating too many chances.

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A lot has been written, said, and postulated that had Fabianski not been injured against Bournemouth way back in September, and the hot mess that is Roberto stayed invisible, we may never have had to dismiss Pellegrini and mid table mediocrity could easily have been attained. When Moura let fly with a fine shot in the 23rd minute, Fabianski reached up with a firm hand to put it over for a corner. The only thing firm about Roberto is the tattoo on his neck. Minutes later Kane sent a beautiful through ball for Alli. Diop just got a touch to it and sent it back to the West Ham keeper, who calmly moved it back out to Cresswell.

Spurs continued to control the ball and ask questions. Balbuena had to put a low cross intended for Kane out for a corner, but after the initial delivery was cleared the hosts regained possession and it looked like a game of keep away. Even when West Ham got a foot on the ball it was a fleeting moment at best.

Spurs had a good spell as the first half wound down, with attacking play down the left from Davis, Moura and Alli. Balbuena, after apparently falling out of favor with Moyes, made some good defensive plays to break down the Spurs attacks. Eventually the Spurs Surge looked to culminate in a low hard shot by West Ham killer Son. But VAR came to the rescue! My new favorite part of Son is his left elbow.

Just before the end of added time, Moura had a clear chance from 15 yards out but somehow pulled his shot wide.

Halftime
Tottenham 0
West Ham 0

David Moyes has been criticized for not having a Plan B. Well, the same cannot be said for yours truly. When the skies at my house turned grey and the rain started, the satellite said Funtime was temporarily on hold. You will not defeat ME, mama nature. In seconds, I had the game on my IPad, the Mac powered up for writing, and I was back in business.

The second half started just as the first half ended. First Dier marched in near the top of the eighteen yard box and sent a shot that went wide. Moments later Aurier drove down the right and found Kane in front of Fabianski. But the prolific Spurs frontman was too close to goal, and his attempt to back heel the ball into the net didn’t work.

Against Wolves, the only chance West Ham really had was when Fornals blew a good opportunity in the first half. He doubled down today in the 53rd minute when Bowen found him all alone inside the Spurs eighteen yard box. Instead of a shot, he rolled a weak ball off his shin and well wide. Before lockdown, Fornals seemed to have cemented his spot in the side. Now, he looks right back where he started at the beginning of the season.

West Ham launched a decent attack on the left in the 57th minute, and it was pretty much all Rice’s doing. After a long run, he cut to his right and tried to curl a shot towards Lloris but it was deflected out for a corner. Seconds later Kane had a good look but his shot went wide. Back down the other way, Antonio was sent forward with a long ball over the top, one that he caught up to. But his attempted volley off the bounce went nowhere near the goal.

The breakthrough as it was came in the 65th minute when Spurs won a corner. The ball floated over and looked to settle calmly in front of Fabianski. But as Soucek tried to sort out his feet to clear, he zigged when should have zagged and the ball went off his leg and into the back of the net.

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Tottenham 1
West Ham 0

The Hammers tried to answer with some energy, and Bowen won a free kick 25 yards from goal. The delivery was not exactly worthy of praise, and the attack was done before it even started. In the 75th minute West Ham won a corner when Lanzini tried to sneak into the box to get on the end of an Antonio cross, forcing Sanchez to put the ball out. Then Antonio won a free kick near the end line, and the delivery eventually came to Anderson. The deservedly maligned Brazilian did well to get the ball to Bowen in the box, and his shot did beat Lloris only to bounce off the outside of the post.

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The game, and my time watching it, ended in the 83rd minute. Antonio had the ball near the top of the Spurs penalty area, but lost it easily to Lamela. A quick pass that Kane timed his run perfectly for became a fait accompli.

Final Score
Spurs 2
West Ham 0

We were better than we had been on Saturday. But we still looked lackluster and void of ideas. And while I know the substitute rules are a bit different now, why Moyes refused again to use what he had at his disposal baffled me. I was comfortable with his re-appointment, thinking we were his level and he was ours. That still might be the case.

The level might just be a lot worse than I knew.


David Hautzig's Match Report

West Ham 0, Wolves 2. Netflix Would Have Been Far Better.

Much of what we call “Normal” comes from our routines. With the vast majority of those shelved indefinitely, we grasp at whatever we can. For my son, it’s a simple bowl of ice cream for desert, which means I have made sure that his favorite frozen treat (mint chocolate chip by the way) is in the freezer at all times. For my daughter, it’s being in her car with the music cranked up, so she has run some errands for us that we would normally do ourselves. To that end, today in many ways was my first day that kind of resembled my average Match Day. I woke up early and watched the lunchtime match while drinking coffee and making some breakfast for me and my son. I then went to the garbage dump and the post office. After a few chores around the house with the Arsenal-Brighton match on in the background, I settled in to the final part of my reasonably average Saturday. I watched West Ham in a relegation battle, full of angst and fear, with every result going against us. And of course two key players found a way to be injured now, after three months of staying home. Based on what we saw today, the Champioship is the more likely division for us next season.

As has been the case with the other matches in Project Restart, the lack of match fitness was apparent from the start. The first five minutes was a series of long balls and mis-timed runs. The Wolves midfield was clearly quicker, and the idea of Noble being run ragged was almost a foregone conclusion.

Wolves won the first corner of the game in the 8th minute, but after a decent clearance by the captain West Ham lost possession and gave up a second corner. They went short, and Rice took no chances and hoofed it to midfield. But Antonio lost the ball almost immediately, and Wolves were at it again. Intensity vs Complacency could have been a decent title for what was on the pitch.

Wolves won another corner in the 13th minute after Jonny sent a ball down the left for Jota to run onto. The Portuguese international sent a ball into the box that Cresswell put behind for a corner. Moments later West Ham finally looked like they were awake, and they probably should have taken the lead. Noble sent a terrific pass over the Wolves back line that Fornals was able to run on to. With nobody between him and he keeper, Fornals lost his nerve and skied his shot….if you want to call it that…..high over the bar.

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West Ham grew a bit into the game midway through the opening half, and in the 20th minute Ngakia drove into the box. His low pass was deflected out to Soucek, and his long drive was deflected out for a corner. The Hammers didn’t even get to finish the set piece because Anthony Taylor spotted a Hammers foul in the box and that was that. Seconds later the camera showed Wilshire warming up, which should kind of tell you where West Ham stood at that moment in time. Maybe Trevor Brooking would be allowed to suit up with the new rules?

Wolves went on the attack in the 31st minute, again on the left. I had to wonder if they decided to attack Ngakia knowing he might not be all there. Jota worked himself into a good position, but Fabianski went down low to smother the shot. Moments later it was Jota again on the left, with Jimenez alongside, and Ngakia got a foot in to put the ball out for a corner. Seconds later Jota tried a low shot, but with two in the box it wasn’t the best option and Fabianski made the easy save.

West Ham won a corner in the 36th minute after Noble rolled a pass to Cresswell on the left, and his cross was put behind by Coady. The set piece was well gathered by Patricio with Antonio and Soucek surrounding him, and once again the Hammers attack looked more than a little anemic.

For the record, as the first half ended my patience with Felipe Anderson officially ran out. No goals. No assists. No effort. No use.

Halftime
West Ham 0
Wolves 0

The Hammers started the second half better than the first, although that doesn’t say much. Ngakia showed some skill to create space for himself near the top of the Wolves eighteen yard box, but his left footed shot was a low roller and no problem for Patricio.

Wolves won a rather luck free kick from the left when Ngakia caught Jimenez as he was simply trying to clear the ball. The Wolves forward pretty much ran into the right back’s foot, and was rewarded with a set piece. West Ham cleared, so in the words of Forrest Gump that’s all I have to say about that.

The 64th minute brought a substitution that we all knew would change everything. Adama Traore should enter a match to the theme from The Terminator. The sight of him is absolutely terrifying to supporters of any team Wolves play. I can’t fathom how West Ham defenders felt. Dear lord, please let this end as soon as possible.

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West Ham won a corner in the 70th after Bowen chased down a long ball. Saiss took a gamble and poked the ball away. Bowen went down, and the replay showed it was right call by Taylor. But an inch in either direction and it could have been a penalty. Moments later Traore went on his first run of the match, but his cross found nobody. No worries. He did it again a minute later, and this time Jimenez had a free header and Wolves got their fully deserved goal. Probably for the best that nobody was in the stands.

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West Ham 0
Wolves 1

West Ham tried to answer, and Rice got on the end of a Bowen corner with a short header that Patricio palmed out for a second one. But the home side did nothing with the opportunity and Wolves took control of the ball.

The game, and perhaps the beginning of the end of our time in the top flight, ended in the 85th minute when Traore marched into the West Ham half of the pitch and gave the ball to Doherty, who then just lifted a ball to Neto in the box. With almost perfect timing Neto struck the ball with his left foot and Fabianski had no chance.

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West Ham 0
Wolves 2

June is a very good month for strawberries near me. We like to freeze them and then use them throughout the year in smoothies, jams, baking, stuff like that. Once I post this I’m heading to my friends farm to pick up a flat. That’s 8 quarts by the way. I just thought I’d share that since I don’t feel like writing about football anymore.

Final Score
West Ham 0
Wolves 2

I’ve watched most of the action on TV since Wednesday, and I doubt anyone would argue we looked the worst side of all so far. Considering the money spent, and the hope those signings brought, that’s a problem. I agreed with those calling for the season to be called. I legitimately didn’t see a way back that would be any more of an asterisk in the history books than pressing the restart button in the future. Maybe there was a bit of self preservation in that. My country is a total train wreck at the moment, and I didn’t want to be bothered with the train wreck called West Ham because I saw this as the most likeley outcome.

Today reinforced that.

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David Hautzig's Match Report

Arsenal 1, West Ham 0. Ohhhhh, To Be Clinical.

Once again, we spend equal parts watching West Ham play along with other results near the foot of the table. It’s where we have lived for the majority of my time supporting the club, so like many of you I’m used to it. Callum Wilson’s early goal for Bournemouth turned me into a cranky old bastard for the earliest part of my day. And Milner’s clearance off the line after an Adrian brain fart made my knees buckle. I was genuinely fearful Palace would fold against Watford, but a little more hopeful Wolves and Shafting United would do us a favor. In the end, everything went to form today yet we have reason to be disappointed.

West Ham started the match strongly when Bowen intercepted a very poor pass by Xhaka and let loose a low shot that Leno got his fingertips to and pushed it off the post for a corner. Cresswell’s delivery was, well, awful and the Gooners were able to clear.

West Ham should have taken the lead in the 11th minute when Fornals sent Antonio off on a counter. With Haller on his left, he chose to roll a pass to Haller in the box when maybe a shot would have been the better option. Or perhaps an earlier pass. In the end Antonio’s pass was behind Haller and the opportunity was gone. Moments later it was the home side on the front foot. Ogbonna couldn’t quite clear and Ozil had a chance that Diop blocked out for a corner. West Ham was able to deal with the threat through the forehead of Declan Rice, but Arsenal won another corner that again called on Rice to handle.

West Ham had yet another chance in the 18th minute when Bowen won the ball 25 yards from goal, which allowed Noble to roll a pass to Haller inside the box. But his first touch was heavy, which allowed Leno to come out and block Haller’s attempt out for a corner. Three good chances in the first twenty minutes at The Emirates was good. Having nothing to show for it was awful.

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The 22nd minute was Arsenal’s turn to rue a missed chance. Pepe passed to Aubameyang inside the West Ham eighteen yard box, and the man from Gabon looped a ball for Sokratis. The man from Greece should have scored, but his header went over the bar and onto the top of the net. The universe returned one of West Ham’s missed chances.

In the 30th minute, Antonio was lucky to win a corner when his run into the box included a very heavy touch that deflected off Mari. That’s when Jordan Ayew scored for Palace against Watford, so there was that bit of good news to offset the rather poor delivery from Cresswell. Minutes later it was Arsenal with a corner when Cresswell was forced to send a long pass intended for Pepe down the right into the crowd. Fabianski came out to claim the ball, and after a slight lapse in concentration in getting rid of the ball when Mari ran in front of him the threat was over.

Five minutes later Pepe got the ball on the right side of the West Ham eighteen yard box. I knew he would do a few step-overs before trying a shot with his left foot, because he kind of always does that, so why Cresswell didn’t seem to know that surprised me. The shape and organization of the back four stayed true, so the game remained scoreless.

Thank you Billy Sharp. Norwich down by one to Shafting United.

West Ham upped their count of missed chances to four in the 40th minute when Antonio made a run down the left and sent a cross into the box that Luiz headed behind for a corner. Noble found Diop at the far post with the set piece, and the West Ham center back headed the ball towards goal. Antonio was there, but it looked as if he didn’t quite know where he was and the ball bounced off his shin and out for a goal kick.

Halftime
Arsenal 0
West Ham 0

The second half opened with Arsenal on the ball in the West Ham half. They moved the ball around, won the ball back after Bowen intercepted a pass and tried to start a counter, and generally looked the better side. In many ways, other than the scoreline, it resembled the match earlier in the season at The London Stadium. Arsenal were second best in the first forty five, but started to assert themselves when the whistle blew to star the second half.

Arsenal had a chance to take the lead in the 52nd minute when Saka danced through three West Ham defenders and threaded a pass to the cutting Nketiah. Fabianski came out to meet the striker and stopped the shot with his left arm and Ogbonna cleared. Nketiah got behind Ogbonna moments later but Fabianski came out to smother and end the attack.

West Ham yet again had a fantastic chance to take the lead in the 56th minute. Cresswell sent a cross from the left that Haller was able to flick on to Antonio all alone in front of Leno. But his header was weak and right at the Arsenal keeper. Despite the possession numbers West Ham had more solid chances than the hosts, and the specter of not taking something from a game like that was looming.

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Bowen went on a run in the 66th minute down the middle. He may have made the wrong choice by trying a long low shot instead of finding someone else out wide. Maybe his shot could have been better. But in real time, watching it, he had space and I understood the decision. Leno saved it with ease. A few minutes later it was Bowen again on the run, this time winning a corner down the right. It was cleared, but only as far as Noble who then won a free kick 25 yards from goal. Arsenal handled the set piece, and the squandered chances scoreboard kept leaning in West Ham’s direction.

Fornals had a very good chance in the 75th minute after Bowen launched a counter attack. The initial swarm was repelled, but Noble sent a cross that found Fornals unmarked in the box. The in form midfielder tried a volley, but his contact wasn’t solid and into the ground. The ball bounced rather harmlessly to Leno.

In the 78th minute, Arsenal finally made the breakthrough courtesy of VAR. A pass from Saka deflected to Ozil, who pushed it to Lacazette, who bounced it past Fabianski. Danny Gabbidon was doing the color commentary and said West Ham will feel hard done by since we have been the better side in his opinion. “Chance after chance after chance” said the former Hammer.

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Arsenal 1
West Ham 0

West Ham almost answered when Bowen sent a pass to Haller in the box. The angle was tight, but Haller got a shot off that Leno did well to stop. Moments later the Hammers won a corner but couldn’t capitalize. Soucek then sent a cross into the box that Fornals couldn’t get to in front of Leno. Seconds after that Ngakia broke down the right and rolled a pass into the box that Haller got a touch on, but Luiz came back and did enough to push the ball wide. Then Rice went on a long, box to box run that ended with a ball out wide for Antonio. But his looping cross didn’t find anyone and Arsenal cleared.

Final Score
Arsenal 1
West Ham 0

If we were 13th in the table or something like that, the performance today would have been something I could easily finish my weekend with. And in the end, the table looks almost exactly the same as it did at the start of the day. When you are in a relegation battle and away at Arsenal, it could have turned out far worse. But Arsenal were lucky and got away with it. We were a bit better, and had we been even a little clinical in front of goal we would have had a point.

Maybe three.


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