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West Ham, Chelsea scoreless in London

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  • Chelsea no longer perfect
  • Blues have most of the ball…
  • But dangerous chances fairly even

Lukasz Fabianski made some solid saves including a terrific stoppage time stop on Ross Barkley, as West Ham United and Chelsea staged a 0-0 draw that betrayed its scoreline at the London Stadium on Sunday.

The draw is Chelsea’s first setback of the season, and leaves them in second. The Blues are two points behind Liverpool and level with Man City.

West Ham remains 17th with four points.

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Manuel Pellegrini‘s decision to counter led to some wide open chances for West Ham when the Irons managed to collect the ball, even without the injured Marko Arnautovic.

Felipe Anderson and Andriy Yarmolenko found plenty of joy on the wings, and West Ham challenged young Chelsea backstop Kepa Arrizabalaga more than once. Michail Antonio was a change of pace from Arnautovic but certainly up for the role of center forward.

Maurizio Sarri would’ve been frustrated with the lack of danger given his tactical decision to rest Eden Hazard, Mateo Kovacic, and David Luiz at midweek for this very reason. Aside from an N'Golo Kante header, there was little to worry Lukasz Fabianski.

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Alvaro Morata subbed into the game and brought immediate life to the Blues attack, and also raised the question of whether the finish-lacking chance-monger is just snake bit when Fabianski made a terrific 67th minute save with his face.

David Luiz hit a free kick to Fabianski at one end, and Yarmolenko couldn’t get on the end of Robert Snodgrass‘ inviting cross at the other.

Barkley curled a pretty effort toward goal in stoppage time, but Fabianski got low to slap the effort wide of the frame.

Liverpool 4-1 West Ham: Reds run Irons ragged

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  • Can opens scoring, 30′
  • Reds build 3-0 lead
  • Antonio scores lone Irons goal
  • Liverpool goes second

Sadio Mane, Roberto Firmino and Mohamed Salah all scored second half goals as Liverpool went second with a 4-1 win over visiting West Ham United on Saturday.

Emre Can gave Liverpool the lead en route to a 3-0 start, before Michail Antonio answered for West Ham.

The Reds are a point ahead of Manchester United before the Red Devils play Chelsea on Sunday. West Ham is 13th, four points clear of the drop zone.

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Salah touched a Firmino pass past flat-footed James Collins, and his 15-yard shot was pushed off the far post by Adrian.

It was Marko Arnautovic chipped Loris Karius but not the cross bar as West Ham looked to answer the bell.

The breakthrough came before the half-hour mark, as Salah settled his blocked corner to help win a second. This time, it was Can heading home a back post offering to make it 1-0.

Arnautovic found even more danger before half, but Karius was there to get the job done.

Salah doubled the advantage in the 51st minute, shooting low past a flat-footed Adrian.

Can set up Liverpool’s third, playing a ball over the top for Firmino to push past a charging Begovic and slide into the goal. 3-0.

Cheikhou Kouyate picked Can’s pocket within minutes to play Antonio down the right for the Irons’ opener, but Mane settled the affair soon after the Liverpool concession.

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PL AT HALF: Palace scores (then concedes); Man City rolling (yes, again)

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We’ve got goals!

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Liverpool’s poor finishing conspired with Manchester United’s defensive style to keep us from witnessing some markers in the opening match of the Premier League weekend, but that’s not continued with most of the 10 a.m. ET kickoffs.


Crystal Palace 2-1 Chelsea

All Palace needed to get its first match of the season was the Premier League champions on the other side. Yohan Cabaye saw David Luiz‘s clearance go off his knee and in to give the Eagles their first goal in 731 minutes, though Tiemoue Bakayoko scored within minutes to level the score line. Mamadou Sakho then cued up electric returnee Wilfried Zaha for a terrific finish just before halftime.

Tottenham Hotspur 0-0 Bournemouth

Hugo Lloris has a nice save and Davinson Sanchez a timely block at Wembley Stadium.

Manchester City 3-1 Stoke City

If this were hockey, likely PL star of the season Kevin De Bruyne would have two assists. First he gave Kyle Walker the ball to cue up a Gabriel Jesus goal, then the Belgian slipped in Leroy Sane for a cross finished by Raheem Sterling.

The last name set David Silva up for City’s third goal, though Mame Biram Diouf pulled one back for the Potters just before the break.

Burnley 0-1 West Ham United

Michail Antonio‘s long-desired goal has the Irons on top in a claret battle inside Turf Moor, but a pair of yellow cards to Andy Carroll have opened the door for the hosts.

Swansea City 1-0 Huddersfield Town

A woeful decision from Town goalkeeper Jonas Lossl allowed Tammy Abraham to put Swans ahead at the Liberty Stadium.

Premier League Preview: West Ham vs. Huddersfield Town

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  • First meeting since 1997 (League Cup)
  • Town leads all-time 22W-7D-10L
  • Irons: minus-8 goal differential
  • Town yet to lose in PL

West Ham’s next chance for its first points of the Premier League season comes with a Monday visit from surprising Huddersfield Town (Watch live at 3 p.m. ET on NBCSN and online via NBCSports.com).

The Irons have had to stew on a 3-0 loss to Newcastle United, and return to play after an international break with a spot at the table’s rock bottom.

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Town sits sixth in the table and can claim a share of the Premier League lead on points with a win at the Olympic Stadium on Monday. David Wagner‘s men have yet to concede a goal in Premier League play.

West Ham’s two goals this season have both come from Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez.

What they’re saying

West Ham star Michail Antonio on the import of points“It’s just one of those things where we’ve had a bad start and made a couple of mistakes. We need to pick ourselves up and just keep moving forward. It’s important to win because we have got to get some points on the table, especially with Burnley and Newcastle winning again. We need to put our heads to it and keep going.”

Huddersfield Town manager Wagner on Bilic’s struggles“I think it’s totally correct (to say the criticism is unfair) because he gets back to play three difficult away games, and in one they got a red card very early (the 3-2 defeat at Southampton). They have come out of pre-season into three away games, but now is the time for him to correct it and I wish him all the best after the game on Monday.”

Prediction
Bilic’s embattled men send Town back to Earth with a 1-0 win in London.

Antonio urges West Ham fans to get behind London Stadium set

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Michail Antonio is dedicated to taking West Ham to the next level, and then some.

How dedicated? Nursing a hamstring injury and preparing for both the Premier League season and his wedding, the English attacker brought a trainer with him to his U.S. based stag party.

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Also, raise your hand if your stag was a week long? We digress. Antonio told The Daily Mail, “I went to Las Vegas – the only place you can have a stag do. We were there for seven days. There were all my boys and Fraser the physio. I was doing workouts pre and after celebrations. I was up for 10am every day for sessions.”

With the additions of Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez and Marko Arnautovic, the Irons attack may really find itself firing this season.

And while West Ham struggled to adapt to its new home at the London Stadium, Antonio says last season could’ve been worse and fans need to get behind the team at its still-new home.

“People said how much it was not a good season but we were point away from 8th. But we want to improve. As a professional footballer, we cannot blame the tools. Certain performances last season…we can’t say it’s the stadium. The pitch is ten times better than the Boleyn ground. It is basically a carpet – perfect. The crowd last season didn’t really take to it but hopefully this season we realise that we can’t look back. The Boleyn Ground is gone, this is our home and the fans have now just got to get behind us.”

Investment is real from chairman David Sullivan and the West Ham hierarchy, and the Irons will have every chance to turn into a Top Seven contender. If they do, fans can thank Antonio for fighting off his stag partying with morning workout sessions. Sounds like a better man than me.