Match Report and MOM v West Ham

Neil Dawson

Fans' Favourite
Wilson’s Hammer Blow Chills Irons

Callum Wilson, subject of much transfer speculation in recent weeks proved none of it had gone to his head at the Vitality this drizzly afternoon. His decisive searing volley put West Ham to bed and stuck another £5m onto his price! West Ham were one of his rumoured suitors and their fans, if they missed his wonder goal in the Smoke earlier this year, now will understand why!

Eddie rang a surprise change before the match with Boruc regaining his league place after 20 months out and Begovic paying the price for a couple of shots he could maybe have got down better to in recent weeks. Wilson retuned for Stanislas and the team returned to the 4-4-2 that Eddie likes when in a rut.

The game was even matched throughout with defences largely on top. Fabianski would have been the more worried of the two ‘Poles in the Goal’ as more action was at his end. Brooks headed wide when he could have done better then Ake scored a far-post header only to be ruled off-side. Bournemouths’ football was neat but very left side dominated with Fraser and Smith with Clyne’s runs not being picked up. Brooks started cleverly and remained at that level throughout the game.

Boruc was enjoying an untroubled afternoon but did have to throw himself full length at a Nasri shot that was inches away from a Hammer’s lead after the defence had a little spell of messing about and suicidal tendency passing.

The rest was two sides playing very similar attacking football but finding a defence on top of the final cross or pass. An enterprising half and reassuring to see our defence so solid following recent weeks.

HT Bournemouth 0 West Ham 0

The second half saw Bournemouth come out of the traps flying in front of an expectant North stand. A little purple patch saw Fabianski spectacularly deny Cook the opener from a corner. Ake’s turn back was just too high for Wilson and King.

Eddie spoke afterwards about how pivotal moments went against us in the recent run but today one went for us. Andy Carroll was having a clumsy afternoon with his second touch normally a tackle and when the ball fell at his feet a yard out at the far post his blaze over brought much merriment from 90% of those present. It was a gift – but it had gone. Not long after Fraser broke, the ball spun off a challenge and sat up 20 yards out in the path of WILSON. The England striker smashed a boot through it and it careered into the top corner past a stationary Fabianski at an incredible lick. One of those goals we will show our grandchildren - probably standing next to Wilson in a virtual stadium.

There was a wonderful break just after to seal the match but King lacked composure with the final ball to Fraser and the moment disappeared. This heralded the obligatory spell of everyone back in the box for Bournemouth, looking to break whenever possible. Those breaks were normally entertaining with Brooks at the heart of most and Fraser and Kings pace providing the outlet. From one of these King fed Wilson but his first time left foot shot smashed back off the foot of the post.

Back to West Ham pressure……….and Boruc stopping the first shot at him with a nasty bounce just before it reached him then reacting well to punch clear and flatten Diop at the same time. You just knew a break was coming though and when substitute Stanislas fed Brooks cleverly in the box the lynch-pin in the victory astutely delayed and waited for KING squaring the ball into the Norwegians path for him to do the easy rest.

Relief all round!

FT Bournemouth 2 West Ham 0
Boruc 7 – Not much to do but did it well.
Clyne 7 – Tidy if unspectacular home league debut. Team not spotting runs always.
Cook 7 – Dealt with Carroll well and saw him off. Some misplaced passing.
Ake 7 – Back to his normal calm watchful athletic best.
Smith 8 – Excellent energy, linking with wee-man and defending.
Fraser 8 – Immense effort, movement and thought.
Gosling 8 – Put a hell of a shift in – harried, tackled and passed better.
Lerma 7 – Nice calm influence the odd weird pass aside. Protected excellently.
Brooks 9 – Another outstanding display of vision and trickery.
King 7 – Worked hard but some poor decisions, finished strongly and good running.
Wilson 8 – Troubled West Ham all day and a finish to be the talk of many a pint.

An important game in so many ways. A return to a clean sheet. A return to creating and finishing good chances. An end to personal errors. Most importantly the 30 point target reached and a monkey off our backs with Liverpool and Chelsea to come in the next three games.

This was an excellent display as well because the tempo was so strong, it was vintage Bournemouth, relentless in movement and quick to the tackle. It’s a funny game football because today you would think the ability to play like this had never gone away but in some recent games you would have been pushed to remember it existed!
Great to see Brooks now starting to play more consistently brilliantly rather than one game in three and also Wilson’s game has moved on so much with different goals and better hold up-play. Hopefully this goal with bring King back on to his game as well as one run he made was excellent.

The back four were very disciplined and I liked Boruc’s quick distribution which set up our breaks more than Begovic’s more deliberate approach.
All in all a cracking afternoon and one which will do so much good for the squad in so many ways.


Fans' Favourite
Good report that Neil, agree with pretty much all of it.

Gosling a bit of an unsung hero today for me - he managed to cut out silly errors and that leaves a very combative player who helps win the midfield battle. Lerma is so calm on the ball too - an easy player to like.

A forth season without major relegation worries - let's push for a record points haul now.
Whilst there were one two hairy moments, we didn’t phart around so much in our own 18 yard box. A good hoof to clear the ball out of danger was more obvious today, hence the back four more confident which helped with the clean sheet.


Star Player
All about percpetions I suppose. Cook was easily MotM for me. he and Ake had an excellent game. Brooks I'd give a 6.5, he actually had possibly his worst game for us, although I'm convinced he's the best player we've ever actually had, in terms of his creativity and capability.

I wonder what Fraser's issue was, shortly before he came off and with Eddie, when he was subbed?
Thought Cook had a few shaky moments in the first half but was dominant after the break. I’m always happy when I see the opposition line up with a big lump up front - we’ve had a fantastic defensive record against the likes of Carroll, Benteke and Crouch over the years. It’s the quicker trickier forwards like Son and Hazard which concern me more.

Smith was great today. I’m not sure him at LB is a long term solution. It makes us a bit one-dimensional going forward as with playing inverted wingers too, we lack natural width.

It was obvious at HT, Brooks and Fraser were told to get on the ball and run at their defence. It really made the difference as West Ham couldn’t handle the tempo. We didn’t create too many chances, but if we could improve our final ball, we could’ve had 4 or 5 one-on-ones today
Yes, that final ball was either too hard or short,but I think our players gave it their all today. Glad King got a goal as he still seems not back to his devastating best.A few times he kept his head down on breaks when a simple pass was on,but apart from that gave his all and pressed really well


First Team
Clyne is proving to be a really important loan, didn't put a foot wrong today. I don't know if it's because Carroll looks Benik look like Messi, but itoday was the least worried I've been about our defence all season. Gosling and Lerma worked really well together, credit to Gosling who I thought had his best game of the season
Good report that Neil, agree with pretty much all of it.

Gosling a bit of an unsung hero today for me - he managed to cut out silly errors and that leaves a very combative player who helps win the midfield battle. Lerma is so calm on the ball too - an easy player to like.

A forth season without major relegation worries - let's push for a record points haul now.
9 seasons in a row without relegation problems?
Boruc 6 - Some very dodgy moments, didn’t really have much to do. Played the ball out quickly and effectively.

Clyne 7 - Very good defensive performance. Linkup play was a bit off at times. Already looking like Mr. Dependable.

Cook 7 - Dominant display at the back. Some misplaced passes, a poor miscommunication with Boruc. Dealt with Carroll well.

Ake 7 - Much improved display. Some misplaced passes but never really caught out by the West Ham attack.

Smith 7 - Excellent attacking display from fullback, with some awesome running. Caught out a few times at the back.

Brooks 8 - Can appear to drift in and out of games, but is constantly at the heart of all our good attacking play. Great assist.

Gosling 7 - Very energetic, combative display with some fine interceptions. Lax passing at times, but improved from Everton.

Lerma 8 MOM- He’s the fucking Colombian Winston Wolf. Yes, his shooting is appalling, and his passing can be wayward, but if we mess up at the back he just appears and sorts everything out. :bow:

Fraser 7 - Good pace, was nice to see him not get completely abused by defenders for once. He could work on his crossing a bit though, even with all the assists he has.

King 7 - Poor decision making at times, but ran himself into the ground and deserved a goal for his efforts. Looked exhausted.

Wilson 8 - Constant menace, an absolute thunderc**t of a goal, and unlucky not to get two. Much better focal point than King or Moose.

Stanislas 7
- Wasn’t too involved, tidy play and a belter of a pass to Brooks for the second goal. Better performance.

Daniels 6 - Was barely on, but the one thing he did get time to do was a sexy trap of the ball and a great pass, so he can have a 6.

Mousset N/A -