Talking Points from West Ham 2-0 Leeds United

A tough win: The scoreline might not suggest it, but this was far from comfortable for West Ham. Leeds had three or four excellent second half chances, and had Patrick Bamford been more clinical in front of goal, this could have easily gone the other way.

Nevertheless, given that was the final game of the round, and the Hammers were 7th going into it following wins for both Tottenham and Chelsea, it was an excellent result to get them back into fifth. They are just behind fourth placed Chelsea but do have a game in hand over the Blues.

Leeds have two goals disallowed in the first 7 minutes: Apart from the second half chances they created, Leeds had two goals disallowed in the opening 7 minutes of the game. One was clear cut- the ball had clearly gone out of play before Raphinha’s cross, but the other was tighter, and it was by a very small margin that Helder Costa was ruled offside for Tyler Roberts’ goal.

Leeds dominated the opening 15 odd minutes, with 70% of the ball, and had they scored in that period, this might have been a tough evening for the Hammers.

Both loanees score for West Ham: “Jesse Lingard and Craig Dawson score for West Ham as they maintain their CL hopes” is certainly not the headline Hammers fans would have had in mind at this time last year!

The goals came in the 21st and 27th minutes of the game- an excellent response after Leeds had been in total control for the opening 15 odd minutes.

West Ham 2-0 Leeds

Lingard takes a penalty instead of Declan Rice: When they met against Sheffield United last month, Declan Rice pulled rank over Lingard and took the spot kick. This time around, Lingard took the penalty after he had been brought down in the box by Luke Ayling. It wasn’t the best of penalties- Leeds goalkeeper Ilan Meslier actually saved it, but the rebound fell kindly for Lingard, who smashed home from close range.

Next week’s trip to Man Utd shaping up to be an important fixture: As mentioned above, West Ham are 2 points behind fourth placed Chelsea, but have a game in hand over the Blues. They were unlucky to lose to Man City, and a win against United this weekend could go a long way in cementing the Hammers’ position as genuine CL aspirants.

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