By Hughie Southon
This near unbelievable West Ham story goes on with a magnificent win at Villa Park.
It means that we stay in fourth place on the same 20 points as Manchester City, two behind Liverpool and five off table-toppers Chelsea.
To put it simply we are massive with Declan Rice again in extraordinary form, Ben Johnson scoring and showing why he kept Vladi Coufal out of the team, Jarrod Bowen producing a magical performance and sub Manu Lanzini, at last, showing what he’s really about.
Villa were forced to play with ten men after Konsa’s foul on Bowen and for a while bossed things but it was as though we were merely biding our time and we finished off with a couple of fine goals to give the scoreline the look we deserved.
Young Ben – preferred to Vladi Coufal after a series of fine performances had opened the scoring with his first goal for the Irons – driving home left-footed from 22 yards after six minutes.
The Irons had dominated the early exchanges with five shots on target but Villa found a way back when Fornals was too easily outstripped on the left to allow a cross which Watkins slammed home.
But within minutes a great cross-field ball to Benrahma saw the number 22 whip inside defenders and set up a 24 yard shot from Declan which hit the same spot as Johnson’s.
There was more bad news for Villa when they went down to 10 men after VAR following what was nothing less than a forearm smash on Fornals from Konsa.
But they almost grabbed a second equaliser when Watkins beat Fabianski with his header but saw the ball hit the crossbar.
The Hammers went to sleep for a bit and Villa dominated but the boys finally put the game to bed when a Bowen shot just missed the far post but Fornaks was on hand to score.
No 4 was the icing on a beautiful cake when sub Lanzini unselfishly set up the move which allowed Bowen to finish off a great afternoon.
Make no mistake this is is a team that can seriously challenge and it means we have now won four on the road and remain unbeaten in our travels.
We are very very special.