Four-midable West Ham crush Bournemouth for much-needed home victory
PUBLISHED: 19:50 01 January 2020 | UPDATED: 19:55 01 January 2020
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New Hammers boss Moyes inspires team to thumping win over Cherries
West Ham United 4 Bournemouth 0
New Year's Day. New Decade. New Manager. New dawn.
But it was an old head, who set the Hammers on their way to a much-needed, long-overdue home victory at the London Stadium, where 32-year-old Mark Noble struck with two goals before the break to leave the returning David Moyes home and hosed by half-time.
Rested for Saturday's doomsday defeat at the hands of Leicester City's second-string, the West Ham United skipper marked his recall with a deflected 17th-minute opener.
And after Sébastien Haller spectacularly doubled the lead eight minutes later, Noble - the man who has made a record 366 Premier League appearances for the Hammers - then bagged his second goal of the game from the penalty spot on 35 minutes, before Felipe Anderson completed the rout after the break with his first strike since mid-April.
Being out-foxed by those Foxes reserves at the weekend had proved terminal for Manuel Pellegrini, who found his West Ham United reign brought to an abrupt end, just an hour or so after the final whistle.
And with Moyes stepping back into the Hammers hot-set, the newly-installed boss had already found his newly-inherited side languishing in the bottom three following Aston Villa's earlier victory at Burnley.
The Scot made four changes from Saturday's line-up as skipper Noble, compatriot Robert Snodgrass, Aaron Cresswell and Angelo Ogbonna returned in place of substitutes Issa Diop, Carlos Sánchez, Manuel Lanzini and Arthur Masuaku.
During the opening exchanges, the Hammers had already showed slightly more urgency than their South Coast counterparts, forcing a couple of corners, while Pablo Fornals curled a 20-yarder over the top.
Then, on 17 minutes, they broke the deadlock, when Anderson collected Ryan Fredericks' throw-in deep in Cherries territory before sending Snodgrass to the by-line, where the West Ham wideboy cut the ball back from the right and Noble unleashed a low 18-yarder that found the net via a deflection off luckless Lewis Cook.
Having seen his new charges take the lead, it then got even better for Moyes just eight minutes later, when Fredericks sent a waist-high, right-wing cross towards the edge of the six-yard box, where Haller got in front of Steve Cook to fire an athletic, acrobatic airborne volley past Aaron Ramsdale to double the lead and claim his sixth goal of the campaign.
Precariously kicking-off in 17th spot, just one point and one place above the Hammers, Bournemouth had also made a quartet of changes from the side that lost at Brighton & Hove Albion at the weekend, as captain Simon Francis, Jefferson Lerma, Lewis Cook and Callum Wilson returned in place of Jack Tracey and Josh King plus substitutes Philip Billing and ex-Hammer Junior Stanislas.
With the Hammers having released the handbrake, the breaking Wilson found time to force Lukasz Fabianski into an excellent low save but that proved mere token resistance as West Ham trebled their lead, 10 minutes before the break.
Once again, the damage was done down in that bottom right corner as Noble weaved his way into the area under pressure from Harry Wilson, whose innocuous, yet ill-judged, nudge on the wily home captain left both referee Graham Scott and his assistant signalling for a spot-kick.
And after dusting himself down and surviving an inevitable VAR review, that man Noble coolly drilled his low penalty inside the base of Ramsdale's left-hand upright to claim his third goal of the campaign, as the beaten Bournemouth keeper headed in the opposite direction
Diego Rico - booked earlier for checking Snodgrass - forced a flying save out of Fabianski just before the interval but that would be his final contribution during a forlorn 45 minutes for the visitors as Eddie Howe replaced the Spaniard and Harry Wilson with Ryan Fraser and Stanislas for the restart.
Lewis Cook soon stole the ball off the leaping Fornals as he prepared to volley home Haller's deft cross but it would not be long until West Ham inevitably found the net once more.
With 66 minutes on the clock, Rice - on the edge of his own area - picked out Anderson with a pinpoint, crossfield ball that the Brazilian plucked out of the Stratford skies just inside the Cherries half.
It was simply no contest as the Hammers No.8 outpaced the flagging Francis as he made his way into the opposite penalty box before beating the helplessly exposed Ramsdale from six yards.
Having ended a barren, 22-match goal drought, Anderson survived another VAR call before being immediately replaced by Manuel Lanzini and departing to rapturous applause for his long-overdue strike.
VAR also left Cresswell a relieved man, too, when referee Scott's initial red card was replaced by yellow after the left-back was adjudged to have won the ball in his juddering tackle on the felled Fraser.
Dominic Solanke was denied a consolation, when he headed against the far post, while Lanzini nodded into Ramsdale's clutches from close-range before Fornals also went close with an 18-yarder that the keeper held.
But four goals to the good, with gusty choruses of 'Bubbles' boisterously blowing around a re-energised East End, by now was certainly a Happy New Year for everyone Claret & Blue as the Hammers leapfrogged well-beaten Bournemouth into 16th spot.
HAMMERS: Fabianski, Fredericks, Cresswell, Balbuena, Ogbonna, Noble, Rice, Fornals, Snodgrass (Masuaku 82), Anderson (Lanzini 67), Haller. Unused subs: Roberto, Zabaleta, Sánchez, Diop, Ajeti.
CHERRIES: Ramsdale, Francis, Rico (Stanislas h/t), S. Cook, Mepham, Gosling (Simpson 67), Lerma, L. Cook, H. Wilson (Fraser h/t), Solanke, C. Wilson. Unused subs: Boruc, Surman, Billing, Dobre.
Bookings: Rico (23), Cresswell (74), L. Cook (87).
Referee: Graham Scott