West Ham’s 3-0 home win against Southampton on Saturday was the polar opposite of their last home game at the London Stadium.
On Mar. 10, three weeks ago, West Ham lost 3-0 at home to Burnley with fans invading the pitch and fights breaking out in the stands as Hammers fans protested against the ownership of the club.
It looked like their season would spiral out of control with West Ham just two points above the drop zone after three defeats on the spin.
There were only cheers in the home end on Saturday as David Moyes‘ side delivered a perfect response after a testing three weeks on and off the pitch.
Speaking after the emphatic win against their relegation rivals which pulls West Ham five points clear of the drop zone, Moyes praised his team for showing a perfect reaction to the troubles.
“The players were great, their prep over the last few weeks, their attitude has been great, they wanted to put past events behind them,” Moyes said. “The supporters were great and they appreciated the performance of the players. We got the job done early which helped.”
West Ham were in Miami during their three-week break as they didn’t have a game due a clash with the FA Cup fixtures and the international break. Moyes has obviously used that time wisely to refocus his players after three-straight defeats. They looked hungry and finished the game off early.
Marko Arnautovic, who scored twice in the first half as the Hammers came flying out of the traps, admitted the noise and level of support from the home fans fired up the players before the game and made a big difference.
“I think we had a couple of difficult weeks. Obviously we wanted to get good results but we didn’t,” Arnautovic said. “We had three weeks off and we had to stick together as a team, a whole club. We have a lot of quality. We showed that today. It was a fantastic performance.”
West Ham are five points above the relegation zone with seven games to go and it looks like Moyes’ men will be fine.
The response of West Ham’s players — in a game where the pressure was on against a relegation rival and the fans ready to turn on them once again — was sensational.
Plenty has been said about West Ham’s squad over the past few months but their players stood tall and delivered their best 45 minutes of the season to drag themselves away from the relegation scrap.