Tomas Soucek impressive on debut, Masuaku sub hurts West Ham & More- Talking Points from WHUFC 3-3 Brighton

West Ham dropped into the relegation zone as they squandered a two goal lead TWICE to draw 3-3 with fellow strugglers Brighton at the London Stadium. The result, coupled with Bournemouth’s 2-1 win at home against Aston Villa, pushed David Moyes’ men into the bottom three ahead of a tough set of fixtures for the club- 6 of their next 7 are against Man City, Liverpool, Arsenal, Wolves, Spurs and Chelsea.

Here are our talking points from West Ham’s 3-3 draw against Graham Potter’s men in Game Week 25.

Tomas Soucek impressive on debut: Czech midfielder Tomas Soucek was thrown into action straightaway today, and he impressed on debut. He played the furthest of West Ham’s three central midfielders in what appeared to be a 4-1-4-1 formation, and at times, almost looked like he was partnering Seb Haller as part of a duo upfront.

Didn’t shy away from the physical stuff, and very nearly got a debut goal early in the game, but Brighton keeper Mat Ryan did very well to save his header. Did a good pressing job in the first half too and played 85 minutes before being replaced. All in all, a more than satisfactory debut for the 24 year-old, and Hammers fans will be keen to see more of him in the future.

Masuaku substitution hurts West Ham: With Michail Antonio having run himself into the ground, David Moyes was left with no option but to bring him off, but his decision to bring Arthur Masuaku and play a more defensive system backfired. It was his botched clearance that lead to the mess that eventually resulted in Brighton’s second goal and his impact unfortunately seemed to mirror the Arsenal game, where West Ham lead 1-0 at the time of his introduction into the fixture, but ended up losing 3-1. [Read more…]

Media Player Ratings for West Ham against Brighton- Fab great, Jack not so much

Here is how the major newspapers and media outlets rated West Ham’s players in their Round 2 clash against Brighton at the Amex on Saturday afternoon.

Manuel Pellegrini, clearly disappointed with his side’s second half capitulation against City, rang in the changes, with five new faces in the starting XI. West Ham started with wbat looked like a 4-1-4-1, with Pablo Fornals operating on the left, Robert Snodgrass on the right, and Manuel Lanzini and Jack Wilshere on either side of Declan Rice. Somewhat surprisingly, Javier Hernandez was named as the sole striker, on his own upfront against the tall Brighton CB trio of Shane Duffy, Lewis Dunk and Dan Burn.

lineup vs brighton 2019 [Read more…]

Ogbonna captain, Brighton remain unbeaten under Anthony Taylor & more- Talking Points from BHAFC v West Ham

West Ham’s first away game of the new 2019/20 Premier League season saw Manuel Pellegrini’s side draw 1-1 with Brighton and Hove Albion at the Amex Stadium. Javier Hernandez put the visitors ahead just after the hour mark, only for debutant Leandro Trossard to equalise four minutes later for Albion.

Here are our talking points from the game.

Angelo Ogbonna into the starting lineup and appointed captain: Manuel Pellegrini was clearly upset with the performances of some of his players against Man City. Aaron Cresswell, captain for the season opener, went out of the 18 altogether today, with Arthur Masuaku replacing him at left back.

Another surprising omission was that of Fabian Balbuena, with Pellegrini drafting Angelo Ogbonna into the XI at the expense of the Paraguayan and also handing him the armband.

Sebastien Haller and Felipe Anderson were both injury enforced absentees, with Michail Antonio the fifth player to be axed.

lineup vs brighton 2019

Brighton remain unbeaten under Anthony Taylor: We had noticed before the game that Brighton had never lost a Premier League game with Anthony Taylor as referee. That record stayed intact today. [Read more…]

Brighton vs West Ham Predictions- What do pundits think of the Hammers’ chances at the Amex?

Manuel Pellegrini will be hoping to become the first West Ham manager in the Premier League era to win a top flight game away at Brighton when the two sides square off today afternoon at the Amex. The Hammers were well beaten 5-0 by Man City on the opening day of the season (6th consecutive year when their opening fixture was against top six opposition), while Brighton stunned Javi Gracia’s Watford 3-0 at Vicarage Road.

It’s new Seagulls manager Graham Potter’s first home game in Sussex this afternoon, and he will be keen to continue from where his side left last weekend. Given that BHAFC have been a bit of a bogey team for West Ham over the last few years, Potter will be cautiously confident going into this clash. His task will certainly be made easier if the key Hammers duo of Felipe Anderson and Sebastien Haller, both suffering from knocks, do not recover in time for this fixture.

Let’s take a look at what TV and media pundits have predicted for this Brighton v Hammers clash

Mark Lawrenson: Lawro “expects a reaction” from West Ham after their loss to City at home, and has gone for a 1-1 draw here.

The referee for this game is Anthony Taylor, under whom Brighton have never lost a Premier League game. All but one of BHAFC’s PL fixtures under him have ended in draws though.

His celeb opponent this weekend, swimmer Adam Peaty, reckons this will be a goalless stalemate, and has predicted a 0-0. It’s the only game out of the ten this weekend in which Peaty doesn’t expect goals to be scored.

Charlie Nicholas: Nicholas says West Ham were punished for “turning up scared” against Man City. He however expects Manuel Pellegrini’s men to bounce back this weekend, and has gone for a 1-0 win to the Hammers. [Read more…]

Referee for Brighton v West Ham- Seagulls yet to lose a Premier League game under him

Anthony Taylor has been appointed as the referee for West Ham’s GW2 clash at the Amex this weekend against Brighton and Hove Albion. Interestingly though, the Seagulls have never lost a Premier League game when Taylor’s been in charge.

Brighton and Hove Albion- Premier League games refereed by Anthony Taylor

Arsenal 1-1 Brighton (2018/19)
Brighton 1-1 Arsenal (2018/19)
Brighton 1-0 Wolves (2018/19)
Southampton 2-2 Brighton (2018/19)
Brighton 1-1 Huddersfield (2017/18)
Newcastle 0-0 Brighton (2017/18)

In Game Week 1, Taylor was given the blockbuster United-Chelsea clash at Old Trafford, which the home side won 4-0.

West Ham had themselves lost five in a row away from home across all competitions under Taylor until Michail Antonio’s goal against Spurs in April saw them break that losing run and become the first visiting team to win at the London Stadium.

West Ham under Anthony Taylor (last six away games- all competitions)

Tottenham 0-1 West Ham (April 2019)
Wimbledon 4-2 West Ham (January 2019, Cup)
Liverpool 4-0 West Ham (August 2018)
Leicester 1-0 West Ham (December 2016)
Everton 2-0 West Ham (October 2016)
Chelsea 2-1 West Ham (August 2016) [Read more…]

West Ham 2-2 Brighton | Super Subs rescue point for Hammers against Seagulls

West Ham picked up their first ever Premier League point against Brighton as they came from 2-0 down to draw 2-2 against Chris Houghton’s men at the London Stadium.

Despite losses to Watford and Burnley, December had still been a very productive month for the Hammers- only league leaders Liverpool took more points than them in that period, and the 15 points Manuel Pellegrini’s men picked up was more than the 12 they had in the previous four months put together.

The Hammers were looking for a win to start off the New Year against Brighton, a team that had won all three Premier League clashes between the two sides before this clash. Pellegrini made three chances to his side- bringing in Pablo Zabaleta in defence, Pedro Obiang in the middle of the park, and Andy Carroll upfront to partner Marko Arnautovic. New signing Samir Nasri was on the bench. [Read more…]

West Ham v Brighton predictions- How do the pundits reckon the Hammers will fare in their first game of 2019?

The London Stadium’s first game of the year, with its new, enhanced 60,000 capacity, sees West Ham United host Brighton and Hove Albion on Wednesday evening. The fixture could also mark Samir Nasri’s West Ham debut after he inked a short team deal till the end of the season. Pablo Zabaleta is also likely to return from illness to shore up a back four that looked poor against Burnley.

Brighton are winless in their last five games under the referee for this game, Chris Kavanagh. The Seagulls however did beat West Ham at home earlier this season (the Glenn Murray goal and some shocking defending from Arthur Masuaku), and will be looking to complete a league double over them.

West Ham had their best ever Premier League month in terms of points in December, picking up 15 from a possible 21. After a flat performance against Burnley, the Hammers will be looking to pull up their socks against the Seagulls.

Let’s take a look at what the pundits are predicting for this GW21 clash [Read more…]

West Ham vs Brighton Referee Watch- Seagulls winless in last five under him

The referee for West Ham’s first home game of 2019 has been announced, with Chris Kavanagh set to be the man in the middle when Manuel Pellegrini’s side host Brighton and Hove Albion on Wednesday evening. The fixture will be also be the Hammers’ first at the London Stadium after its capacity was officially increased to 60,000.

The Seagulls go into this on the game on the back of two highly encouraging results over the festive period- a 1-1 draw against Arsenal and a 1-0 win over Everton, both coming at the Amex Stadium. [Read more…]

Five Talking Points from Brighton v West Ham

What a bizarre weekend of football it was! Bayern, Real and Barcelona all failed to win, and so might have Manchester United, if it hadn’t been for that late comeback and a stoppage time winner from the much maligned Alexis Sanchez that saw them edge Newcastle.

Currently, Bayern, Real and Barcelona have not won in the last 10 league games combined between them! Real are even having problems scoring, and while Barca are drawing, their story might also have been different had Lionel Messi not been available for them.

Moving away from Bayern, Real and Barca, and back to West Ham, this was one very disappointing result. As Hammers fans though, must admit that some of us actually expected this. BBC pundit Mark Lawrenson, in his pre-game prediction, had gone for a Brighton win just because “it would be typical of West Ham to have a stumble just as they start to get back on their feet

This was a very winnable game- make no bones about it. If not a win, West Ham, as manager Manuel Pellegrini pointed out his post match interview, at least deserved a point. They had 65% of possession, made over 510 passes (in comparison to Brighton’s 280 odd). The home side had a passing accuracy of only 68%, and their only goal came from a horrible Hammers mistake, with Yarmolenko losing the ball in midfield and some very ordinary defending allowing Murray to score. [Read more…]

Media Player Ratings- How did West Ham’s players fare against Brighton?

In his prediction for this game, BBC pundit Mark Lawrenson had said that it would be typical of West Ham “to have a stumble just as they start to get back on their feet“. They turned out to be pretty prophetic words, with Brighton claiming a win at the Amex last night thanks to Glen Murray’s first half goal.

Several Hammers were below par against the Seagulls- Arthur Masuaku, who ignored his defensive responsibilities when Murray got into the box for the first goal, was one. It appeared from replays that Issa Diop had clearly pointed to Masuaku to mark Murray, but for reasons best known to the left back, he chose not to, and the unmarked Murray gleefully scored what was to prove to be the winner for Chris Hughton’s side. Questions have always been asked about Masuaku’s defensive capabilities, and this display is only sure to add to those. [Read more…]