West Ham 2-2 West Bromwich Albion

This was a draw that felt like a loss after the final whistle!

In hindsight, a point against a Tony Pulis side that are defensively more than decent away from home [prior to this game, the only away fixtures in which they had let in two or more goals were against Liverpool (two) and Tottenham (four)] is quite a good achievement. But due to the nature of the late goal conceded, it felt like a loss, and Hammers boss Slaven Bilic took out his anger on the tv mic on the sidelines.

Albion lead 1-0 at the break, thanks to Nacer Chadli’s sixth minute opener, a nice goal in which he nutmegged both Kouyate and Randolph. West Ham had a goal disallowed for Feghouli and Bilic rang in a tactical change at half time, bringing off Cresswell for Callieri, and switching to three at the back.

With West Ham looking more enterprising going forward, Pulis removed goal scorer Chadli and introduced Jonny Evans to match the Hammers’ formation.

The equaliser came on 63 minutes and it was Feghouli who provided it, with the Algerian quickest to react after Ben Foster had tipped Lanzini’s first time effort onto the bar.

Calleri had a tough half- there were plenty of crosses put into the box, but it was a strategy that would’ve suited Andy Carroll or even Ashley Fletcher rather than the Argentine. He was even shrugged off by Albion right back Allan Nyom and with Snodgrass also struggling with his defensive duties following the switch to 3 at the back, Bilic pushed Antonio to the wing to deal with the marauding Cameroonian. [Read more…]

Talking points & Video- West Brom 4 West Ham 2

This was a really, really bad game from West Ham’s point of view.

In the corresponding fixture last season, West Ham had beaten Albion 3-0 and Tony Pulis’ side were without a win at home since March and hadn’t scored four in the league for around 2 years. Both these monkeys were off the Baggies’ back by the hour mark at the Hawthorns, aided by some of the poorest individual defending you’d see.

It wasn’t so much that West Ham conceded four, but that Albion didn’t really have to work for any of their goals. They were all gift wrapped- right from Masuaku’s shocking handball to abject defending from an attacking corner that saw the Baggies score on the counter. [Read more…]