West Ham United 0-2 Watford: The Hornets end the Hammers elusive run of wins
Troy Deeney celebrating after converting his penalty via Getty Images

West Ham United 0-2 Watford: The Hornets end the Hammers elusive run of wins

Watford made it back-to-back Premier League wins with a  2-0 win over West Ham at the London Stadium

matthew-wojciow
Matthew Wojciow

A Troy Deeney penalty and a last-gasp goal from Gerard Deulofeu was enough to give Watford all three points against West Ham at the London Stadium. 

West Ham will feel a little disappointed to come away with nothing, as they created a lot of chances throughout the game but could not find a way past Ben Foster in the Hornets goal.

Story of the match 

West ham made a bright start to the game, attacking Watford with real intent, if it wasn't for some brilliant defending by Christian Kabasele, Javier Hernandez would have had an easy tap in from a brilliant Michail Antonio cross. 

The Hammers dominated the early stages of the match but were lacking that killer final pass, to open up the Watford defence. Even when the Hornets did get forward, West Ham stood firm and didn't allow any of Watford's attackers any space to breathe.

The first real chance did fall to Antonio, when he found some room just outside the Watford box, he unleashed a venomous shot but it was well saved by  Foster

Watford were able to get in behind the Hammers defence on a few occasions but the speed at which the West Ham defence recovered was incredible to see.

It was the away side who did take the lead however when some superb link up play put Roberto Pereyra through on goal and the Argentine was hacked down by Fabian Balbuena. Deeney emphatically converted the resulting penalty but did incense the home supporters with his celebration. Incidentally, Balbuena had to be taken off as a result of the tackle and replaced by Angelo Ogbonna.

Hernandez had a great chance to equalise, when Antonio headed it back across goal and Hernandez took it on the half volley, but it was well kept out by Foster.

West ham were unlucky not to be level just after the restart, when Antonio was able to meet a Robert Snodgrass corner, but his effort agonisingly hit the post and was cleared away.

In the 66th minute, the Hammers should have been level. Felipe Anderson went on an amazing driving run and fed Hernandez but the Mexican completely messed up his shot and his tame effort was easily gathered by Foster.

Watford though should've been two up when Gerard Deulofeu cut the ball back to Abdoulaye Doucoure, all on his own in the box but his sweeping effort was expertly saved by Lukasz Fabianski.

Hernandez, yet again had another chance for West Ham but it was well dealt with by the Watford defence.

Deeney should've wrapped up the points for Watford, 10 minutes from time, when he was slipped through but he could not find a way past Fabianski.

It just wasn't to be for West Ham as in the dying embers of the game, substitute Grady Diangana picked out Snodgrass, whose header was well saved by Foster and Antonio's rebound cannoned off of the crossbar.

All the pressure, West Ham had exerted proved to be for nothing as Pereyra was able to pick out Deulofeu in the Hammers box and the Spaniard calmly finished past Fabianski.

Takeaways from the match

West Ham are starting to play an entertaining brand of football

West ham teams of the past few years, have played a style of functional football, that neither entertains nor is it bad enough to see the side get relegated. However, this season, Manuel Pellegrini has got this team to play fast free-flowing attacking football. Today they got themselves into excellent areas of the pitch but what was letting the side down was a poor final pass and in some scenarios poor finishing also.

Watford are showing some of that early season determination

Watford had a great start to this season and even beat a travelling Tottenham side, a feat only done by Arsenal this season. In recent weeks, however Watford have struggled to keep this momentum going and only returned to winning ways last week, but today they were dogged in defence and counter attacked superbly. Javi Gracia, though will owe a huge debt of gratitude to Foster who pulled off a number of key saves to keep them in front.

One sour note

Following his penalty conversion, Deeney celebrated in front of the home supporters and infuriated many. In replays it showed a cup of tea being thrown from the stands towards the Watford players as they were celebrating. Who knows if more smaller objects were thrown but this is not acceptable no matter the reasoning. 

Man of the Match

Ben Foster

This was an incredibly hard decision to make, but Foster was the main reason that Watford were able to keep their lead. Foster made several key saves and was fast off his line to neutralise the Hammers quick attacks. The whole defence of Watford could quite easily have been in here but Foster was the stand out performer in the Hornets back line.

★★★★★

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