Everton got back to Premier League winning ways with a 2-0 win over West Ham at Goodison Park. Second-half goals from Romelu Lukaku and Ross Barkley earned Ronald Koeman’s side all three points, though the Hammers enjoyed some promising spells. The Hammers continued with their new system based on a back three, and did well especially in the first 45 minutes.
They forced Everton to play sideways and backwards quite often in the but the game opened up for the hosts after the break. Ultimately, the difference between the sides may have been the fact that West Ham had a utility player in Michail Antonio leading the line while Everton had Lukaku.
The game was quite even for long periods, but Everton’s extra chance shone through in the end. Dimitri Payet and Mauro Lanzini showed same nice moments for West Ham, but faded badly as the game wore one. We looked at how West Ham’s players rated.
Could do little about the two goals and pulled off some good saves. One from a close-range deflected Barkley effort was particularly impressive given how little time he had to react.
Cheikhou Kouyate- 7/10
We’ve come to know him as a box-to-box midfielder, but he is currently deployed by Slaven Bilic as a right sided centre back. Kouyate looks quite comfortable there, and made some important interventions including one brilliant defensive header in the first half. The Irons might miss his dynamism in the middle of the park, though.
Winston Reid- 6/10
The New Zealander is West Ham’s senior defender, and didn’t do a great deal wrong against Everton but his poor clearance played a part in the opening goal. He’ll have better days, but still a player Bilic will not want to be without.
Angelo Ogbonna- 7/10
Like West Ham’s defence in general, Ogbonna was quite comfortable for most of the afternoon but had trouble when Lukaku drifted into his channel. Bilic’s new system is worth sticking with though; they look far more solid than they did a month ago.
Edimilson Fernandes- 5/10
Fresh off the back of his EFL Cup heroics against Chelsea, Fernandes was extremely quiet. Was kept busy by the thrusting runs of Bryan Oviedo and made little impression on the game.
Aaron Cresswell- 7/10
Creswell’s return to fitness is a major boost for Bilic, and the former Preston man looked as good as ever today. If anything, the change in system means he has even greater license to get forward. Uses the ball tidily and has great delivery from his trusty left foot.
Pedro Obiang- 6/10
Covered plenty of ground, but Kouyate is the more dynamic of the two and he is being used at the back. Blazed over when clean through on goal in the first half.
Mark Noble- 7/10
Kept things ticking reasonably well, and his curling shot from range had Robles at full stretch in the second half. The Hammers lacked a bit of cutting edge, but this isn’t Noble’s job description.
Manuel Lanzini- 7/10
The Argentinian midfielder was lively in the first half, linking up well with Dimitri Payet and enjoying the freedom that this system allowed him. He was the more inventive of West Ham’s two creative hubs at Goodison Park.
Dimitri Payet- 5/10
Like Lanzini, was influential in the first period but faded badly as the game wore. The Frenchman’s decision making was uncharacteristically poor and he was caught in possession on a few occasions. Amatuer phsycology is always dangerous, but Payet doesn’t exactly look full of hunger and determination at present.
Michail Antonio- 6/10
West Ham’s man for all seasons was played in an advanced central role, and had some decent moments. Should have done better when through on goal in the second period when his effort was blocked by Robles. Offers plenty, but is in danger of becoming an attacking Phil Jones; a jack-of-all-trades who never quite masters anything.
Andre Ayew- 6/10
Introduced on the hour mark, Ayew showed some classy moments and slicked up some of West Ham’s interplay. Still feeling his way back into first-team action, and no chances fell his way.
Simone Zaza- 4/10
Bilic picked a player often used as a right back ahead of him, which tells you everything about where Zaza sits in the pecking order. Coastal erosion is quicker than the Italian international, who looks a mile off the pace.
Sofiane Feghouli- 6/10
Got some minutes late one, but didn’t;’t have time to make much of an impact.
Featured image: All rights reserved by Serg Hoholok