West Ham 2-0 Newcastle 2019- Poor Magpies crash to defeat

West Ham extended their unbeaten run at the London Stadium to five games as they beat a poor Newcastle side 2-0 on Saturday evening. The result took the Hammers above Everton, with the Toffees being leapfrogged in the league standings after they could only manage a draw in their fixture against Liverpool.

Manuel Pellegrini made five changes to the side that had suffered defeat in midweek to Man City, with Manuel Lanzini getting his first start for the club in nearly ten months. Newcastle however chose to stick with the same XI that had done the business against Burnley.

The pre-match predictions were a mixed bag, but many expected Newcastle to give the Hammers a real run for their money. Unfortunately, they were very poor in the first half, and failed to register even one shot on target before the interval.

Some clever West Ham play from a Robert Snodgrass corner saw the home side take the lead through young midfielder Declan Rice. Fabian Schar lost his marker and a clever bit of movement from Manuel Lanzini stalled Dubravka’s attempt to come forward. Rice rose highest and nodded it in as West Ham took just seven minutes to open the scoring as club legend Billy Bonds watched on in the stands.

Aaron Cresswell had a nasty collision with Javier Manquillo that left both players needing treatment. The left back, reinstated into the starting XI, however had to be pulled off in the 33rd minute after suffering a recurrence of his toe problem, which saw Arthur Masuaku take the field.

Another poor piece of defending allowed West Ham to double their advantage. Sean Longstaff clattered into Snodgrass, forcing Chris Kavanagh to give a free kick to the Hammers. Javier Hernandez initially appeared disinterested, but made a clever run to the back post where Anderson’s pin-point delivery found the Mexican. Florian Lejeune clipped Chicharito in the box and Kavanagh pointed to the spot. Dubravka guessed right but was powerless to stop Mark Noble from smashing it into the top corner. It was the veteran medio’s 22nd penalty in the Premier League since his Hammers debut.

WHUFC starting lineup vs Newcastle 2019

Benitez, sensing that changes had to be made, brought on Diame for Longstaff at half time. Newcastle were far better in the second half- they pressed Declan Rice more frequently, and West Ham’s backline, so relaxed in the first half, were made to work harder. A couple of half chances went the Magpies’ way, and a thunderous free kick from Rondon saw Fabianski have to dive full stretch to stop it.

However it was not to be the Magpies’ evening. Marko Arnautovic took over as captain after Noble was substituted. West Ham could’ve extended their lead later in the game if Arnautovic or Lanzini had spotted Snodgrass free in the box on a couple of occasions, but they settled for a 2-0 win, and more importantly, a clean sheet! Lanzini played the full 90- a very welcome sight for Hammers fans who’ve dearly missed the little Argentine.

West Ham 2-0 Newcastle (Rice 7, Noble pen 41)

MOTM: Declan Rice

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