West Ham came from one nil down to beat Frank Lampard’s Chelsea 3-2 in a crucial game at both ends of the Premier League table with West Ham battling relegation and Chelsea chasing Champions league qualification. Despite controversially losing a goal to VAR the Irons fought back to steal all three points thanks to a late Andriy Yarmolenko winner.
The Hammers came into the match on level points with 18th place Aston Villa but were narrowly out of the bottom three on goal difference. Chelsea on the other hand came to the London Stadium full of confidence having beaten Manchester City 2-1 at home in their previous fixture.
Despite failing to win or score in their last two league games, West Ham started the game on the front foot and were causing Chelsea’s backline some problems. It was Michail Antonio who had the first big chance of the game, forcing his way past Antonio Rudiger and dragging his shot just wide of the post.
Chelsea started to pick up the pace and grew into the game with each passing minute and came close themselves to scoring an opening goal. Christian Pulisic fired his finessed shot just wide of Fabianski’s post, almost finishing off what would have been a great Chelsea move.
The hosts thought they had broken the deadlock in the 34th minute when Tomas Soucek poked home what he thought was his first West Ham goal, only for it to be ruled out by VAR for an apparent offside and obstruction.
What a first-half at the London Stadium!#WHU thought they were in front until VAR ruled this out for offside!
A furious David Moyes could only watch on in horror as his side then quickly conceded a penalty just minutes later after a clumsy challenge from Issa Diop.
After Diop brought down Pulisic inside the box and It was Willian who stood up to take the penalty. The Brazilian then coolly sent Fabianski the wrong way making the score line 1-0 to Chelsea.
However, West Ham didn’t give up and the East London side continued to press the blues in search of an equaliser. The Irons got their reward in the second minute of stoppage time as Tomas Soucek once again put the ball in the back of the net beating Kepa to head in Jarrod Bowen’s delightful corner to level the scores.
Despite starting the second half poorly in their last two games, West Ham came out of the blocks running and took the lead in the 51st minute following a great team move from David Moyes’ men. The move was started by Captain Declan Rice with an inch perfect pass which was then worked down the right flank to Bowen, whose perfect low driven cross made it impossible for Antonio to miss.
The lead was West Ham’s to lose and they did so in the 72nd minute when Willian’s brilliant freekick crashed in off the post and beat Fabianski a little too easily to bring the score level once more.
All hope seemed lost in the 78th minute when Moyes bizarrely subbed off the Hammers brightest player Jarrod Bowen for Andriy Yarmolenko, who had only recently returned from injury. Just when it seemed as though the points would be shared, West ham broke on the counter attack in the 89th minute with Antonio sending newly subbed on Yarmolenko though on goal.
The Ukrainian international made no mistake, cutting in on his left foot and smashing his effort into the bottom left corner to make the score 3-2 and give his side a massive boost of confidence amid relegation.
West Ham’s victory meant that this was the first time the East London side had completed the double over their West London rivals since 2003. The win sees David Moyes men move up to 16th place and put three points between themselves and 18th placed Aston Villa.
The loss for Chelsea sees them miss the chance to go 3rd place in the table and now opens up the fight for the Champions league places, with Manchester United and Wolves hot on their heels.
In a Sky Sports post-match interview man of the match Michail Antonio said the win had given his side confidence and that “It is not that we won, it is that we were down and we came back.”
David Moyes side will look to keep up their form when they take on inform Newcastle United on July 5th as West Ham look to lengthen the gap between them and the relegation zone.