West Ham – Burnley: Michail Antonio’s early goal delivered West Ham United a 1-0 win over Burnley in London on Saturday.
The Irons have only lost one in their last eight across all competitions and sit eighth on the Premier League table with 29 points.
Burnley is four points clear of the bottom three but has played one more match than 18th-place Fulham.
Three things we learned from West Ham – Burnley
1. Script followed, Pt. I: With Michail Antonio finally back in the fold and the Irons cutting ties with Sebastien Haller, there was an onus on David Moyes’ men to deliver the decisive moment at home against a team it’s supposed to beat nine times out of 10 if the Irons’ project is real. The 30-year-old needed just nine minutes to score his fourth goal of the season, using his first start since Nov. 30 to keep up a productive spell that boosted Moyes out of the bottom three during Project Restart.
2. Script followed, Pt. II: What? You thought Burnley was going to go down a goal and either open up its attack (and thus its defense) in some sort of panic attack? The Clarets stayed resolute and dodged numerous West Ham bids to put the game away, staying in the mix deep into the contest in London.
3. West Ham can dream: With West Brom on Tuesday and Crystal Palace after that, David Moyes and Co. have a very good shot to be standing on the precipice of the top four when Liverpool visits on Jan. 31. They’ll need to finish their chances far better than they did Saturday, but their work at the back was good enough to stymy a better side than Burnley.
Man of the Match: Antonio
The veteran striker is a punishing player who mixes that physical prowess with a fair bit of flair and plenty of nous. He might’ve had two or three goals (or even four) on another day.
West Ham – Burnley recap
Antonio put the Irons ahead from his office before the match was 10 minutes old.
The Clarets had the ball in the goal via an Aaron Cresswell own goal but the offside flag was up.
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The Irons endeavored to put the game away and Declan Rice hit a vicious cutting free kick from an acute angle that just missed the frame as it stayed 1-0 in the 59th minute.
Rice set up Jarrod Bowen for a shot into the outside of the netting with 22 minutes to play. Bowen was lively but missing the finishing touch all day.