After a dominating 4-1 win against Watford, West Ham regained ground on the Premier League’s top four.
Claudio Ranieri’s side came into the game on the back of four straight defeats – not to mention three games postponed due to a Covid outbreak in the squad – while the Hammers arrived in Hertfordshire on the back of a four-match losing record in all competitions.
The hosts, on the other hand, got off to a better start, with Josh King setting up Emmanuel Dennis for a five-minute goal into the top corner.
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The visitors were unfazed by the early conceded goal and eventually grabbed control of the game. Said Benrahma rocked the crossbar, Michail Antonio looked ominous, and despite Watford’s massed defence frustrating them for a time, an equaliser seemed certain.
As it turned out, two goals came in short succession. Jarrod Bowen floated an inch-perfect ball into the box for Tomas Soucek, who struck a first-time shot past Daniel Bachmann with 27 minutes remaining.
Antonio surged forward on the left flank two minutes later and cut the ball back for Benrahma, whose attempt deflected off Adam Masna, fooled Bachmann, and slid in.
Early in the second half, Bowen had the ball in the back of the net, but it was ruled out after VAR identified a foul by Soucek on Dennis in the build-up and referee Darren England went to the monitor.
However, VAR intervened in West Ham’s favour not long after. Bowen went in front of Bachmann, who fought with him but didn’t get any of the ball after Antonio lofted a cross into the area.
Mark Noble made it 3-1 from the penalty spot before Nikola Vlasic added a late third to ensure three points for David Moyes’ side, who moved up to fifth in the rankings due to Tottenham’s 1-1 draw against Southampton.