West Ham rode their luck at the weekend as they travelled to Burnley in a 1-1 draw. The Hammers took the lead in impressive fashion when Joe Hart’s long ball went all the way through the home side’s defence, finding Michail Antonio in a dangerous area. The forward carried the ball well before taking it round the goalkeeper and slotting home with a composed finish.
However, Slaven Bilic’s side were unable to see out the victory with Chris Wood’s header rifling into the back of the net with five minutes left on the clock after a brilliant cross from Johann Gudmundsson. In truth, it could’ve and probably should’ve been a win for the home side, with Burnley having a penalty shout wrongfully dismissed after Joe Hart caught Wood without making contact with the ball.
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Carroll’s ill-discipline costs West Ham
Given his aerial prowess, Andy Carroll was always going to challenge with Ben Mee and James Tarkowski for the ball, but using his elbow in a dangerous manner on two separate occasions saw him sent off after just 27 minutes.
From then on it was a pretty uphill battle for The Hammers, who produced a stern defensive display in his absence to keep out Burnley for as long as they did. Carroll’s dismissal ensured Bilic’s side had no out-ball to provide some respite for his defence and such ill-discipline will undoubtedly have frustrated Slaven Bilic.
Given the amount of injuries Andy Carroll has picked up during his career at the London stadium, he seems to be more of a hassle than anything for West Ham. Gone are the days were he dominated games and provided a talismanic figure up front.
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Burnley left aggrieved after lack of penalty decision
The home side can rightfully feel hard done by after the referee’s decision not to award a penalty in the second-half, with no signs of contact with the ball from Joe Hart after Chris Wood diverted it away from the goalkeeper’s reach.
Nonetheless, Burnley require a stronger cutting edge about them if they are to enjoy another successful season. The Clarets struggled to break down a resilient 10-men and were largely restricted to long-range efforts that never truly threatened to cause Hart problems in between the sticks.
A change of tactics saw more fluidity and verve from the forward line, but the fine margins of the Premier League mean Burnley need to find the net on a more frequent basis if they’re to continue their impressive start to the season.