REPORT | West Ham 2-0 Everton
Everton fall at the London Stadium to seal the fate of Frank Lampard as the threat of relegation looms larger and larger.
Everton travelled to London on Saturday to take on David Moyes and West Ham United amidst yet another week of turmoil and speculation surrounding the board and surrounding still the future of the Everton manager. Lampard played the same 5 at the back formation that featured against Southampton with one change, Yerry Mina in for Ben Godfrey after the defender suffered a knock in the 1-2 loss against the Saints last weekend.
Despite some defensive shakiness from Mina and Tarkowski early, it was the blues that got out on the front foot in the match and looked to assert themselves on the hosts. There was good, progressive play from Iwobi and Mykolenko before the Nigerian attacking midfielder created the first chance of the match. He fired in a cross to Mina who attempted to volley home from inside the box, but his effort went over. There appeared to be a handball from Ogbonna in the cross in from Iwobi, but the referee was uninterested and the sides played on.
Following some more attempted impetus from the blues, Benrahma nearly scored in the 28th minute for the Hammers, but Pickford made a good save and pushed his effort onto the post. However, a defensive lapse in the 34th minute from the visitors saw a ball in from Emerson nodded on by Zouma and prodded in at close range from Bowen to put the hosts up 1-0. As Everton have seen many times this season, once a goal goes in more seem to follow, and that was the case once again. West Ham took control of the match after the goal and needed only 7 minute to find the second, as Antonio beat Tarkowski on the wing before firing across for Bowen to once again tap home to make the score 2-0 headed into halftime.
Everton would take off both fullbacks at halftime to be replaced by Tom Davies and Dwight McNeil, and would open the half well. McNeil put a great cross in only 2 minutes later that was somehow not prodded home by a sliding DCL in a huge moment of the match. Idrissa Gueye would have a crack 11 minutes later firing from outside the box, his effort was good and bending towards the corner but a good save from Fabianski kept it out.
The rest of the match was about control for the Hammers, with Everton offering little threat once again in a season that has been devoid of a goal scoring threat from anywhere on the pitch. The disjointed play between the midfield and attack would make it difficult for Calvert-Lewin to impact, and West Ham were menacing on the counter to keep the blues at bay. In the end it was slinking and desperate 2-0 loss against a team that was 18th in the league following a loss to the side that currently sits on the bottom. With reports confirmed that Danjuma is in and Lampard is out, the rest of January is crucial in making a couple of signings to bolster the squad while getting the new manager acclimated ahead of a 2 week respite before a more than challenging home match against Arteta’s top of the league Arsenal.