Lucky West Ham gain replay


Let’s start by stating the obvious – West Ham are lucky to find themselves involved in a replay after a 1-1 draw against a never-say-die City team who probably deserved to win on the basis of their second half performance.

Lucky West Ham gain replay

Lucky West Ham gain replay

The Irons had gone ahead after just four minutes through Jarrod Bowen who rounded the keeper to slot home after a wonderful ball from Lucas Paqueta.

The Hammers problems started soon afterwards when the Brazilian collapsed and was forced to leave the action and although the slide from form didn’t start immediately the Championship team certainly became stronger.

Sam Bell and Rob Dickie both had opportunities but Lukasz Fabianski stood firm on both occasions to keep West Ham’s lead intact.

TheĀ  second period was a different thing altogether with the Robins seeking a way through a very leaky looking Hammers defence and it paid off when academy graduate Tommy Conway found space behind the Hammers’ backline before drilling beyond Fabianski.

Clear-cut chances for the visitors were few and far between after they drew level and they had to hang on in the closing stages as Danny Ings and Divin Mubama both went close but were denied by some desperate defending.

But they had been the more purposeful and aggressive side over the second 45 minutes as they Hammers produced a performance which would have shamed a weakened side, never mind the best David Moyes could produce in the absence of Kudus.

The Irons face a January 15 replay which will test them to the limits based on what we saw this afternoon when they conceded their first goal in four games.

The only thing the squad managed to display to produce this afternoon was the frustration which has become the keynote emotion of West Ham down the years!

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Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!"

Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon