Getty Images

Huge blow for West Ham as Arnautovic out injured

Leave a comment

West Ham United will be without their main man for the busy festive period.

[ STREAM: Watch every PL match live

Marko Arnautovic suffered a hamstring injury against Cardiff City on Tuesday which will keep him out for at least a month, as the Hammers will have to do without their top goalscorer until January.

Arnautovic, 29, has been a revelation since arriving at the London Stadium from Stoke City in the summer of 2017. From January 2018 onwards he has often lined up as their lone striker, but the Austrian will now spend some time on the sidelines after suffering a few knocks in recent weeks.

“We know how important Marko is for our team,” Pellegrini said. “We have too many players injured in a month that we have to play seven games and then in January, six more games. But I always have the same answer – we have a squad and it is a chance for another player to demonstrate why they are here.”

In recent weeks Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez has grabbed his chance with both hands, as the Mexican star scored twice in the 3-0 win at Newcastle United last weekend. Lucas Perez also scored a brace in West Ham’s 3-1 home win against Cardiff City on Tuesday and if others continue to step up, plus Felipe Anderson continues to create chances galore, the Hammers should be just fine without Arnie.

West Ham are now up to 13th in the table after a slow start under Manuel Pellegrini and have an extremely favorable schedule over the festive season with games against Crystal Palace, Fulham, Watford, Southampton, Burnley and Brighton their next six games coming up.

By the time Arnautovic returns they could well be pushing for a spot in the top eight.

Premier League Club Power Rankings: Week 15

Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images
Leave a comment

[ ARCHIVE: Premier League club power rankings ]

20. Burnley — Since we last ranked ’em, the Clarets have lost to Newcastle and Liverpool at home and Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park. Only one of those is forgivable given current form. This is getting real dicey for a side which has Brighton, Spurs, Arsenal, and Everton by Boxing Day.
Last week: 15
Season high: 13
Season low: 20

19. Southampton *New season low* — New boss Ralph Hasenhuttl saw a team that didn’t quit despite hitting the bar thrice in going down 3-0 at Spurs. A visit to Cardiff City is on the verge of “must win” on Saturday.
Last week: 17
Season high: 13
Season low: 19

18. Huddersfield Town — The Terriers are looking solid, even in defeat, but points have to start coming to the John Smith’s Stadium.
Last week: 19
Season high: 18
Season low: 20

17. Fulham — Claudio Ranieri‘s men have nearly doubled their point total during his three matches in charge, including a draw against his old pals Leicester.
Last week: 20
Season high: 11
Season low: 20

16. Crystal Palace  — Someone besides Wilfried Zaha from open play and Luka Milivojevic from the spot has to produce goals (and Andros Townsend‘s once-in-a-blue-moon wonder strikes don’t count). The Man Utd draw and Burnley wins do help.
Last week: 14
Season high: 6
Season low: 16

15. Cardiff City *New season high* — Two wins from four, and the other matches were respectable. Has Neil Warnock done enough to keep the Bluebirds clear of the Bottom Three with an addition or two in January?
Last week: 16
Season high: 15
Season low: 20

14. Newcastle United — There are few teams as stout at the back as Rafa Benitez‘s Magpies, who can start to consider midtable an option with an easier run of games underway and the January window maybe bringing a takeover and reinforcements (like Atlanta United’s Miguel Almiron?).
Last week: 14
Season high: 13
Season low: 19

13. Watford — Like Bournemouth, the Hornets have failed a series of tests regarding their chances to contend for something meaningful. But their performance against Man City reminded us that they are capable of finishing comfortably mid-table if they bring their A-game.
Last week: 11
Season high: 4
Season low: 14

12. Wolves — That’s a really nice win over Chelsea to stop the rot, and there’s a chance for Nuno Espirito Santo‘s men to really steady the ship with Newcastle on the docket.
Last week: 10
Season high: 5
Season low: 13

11. West Ham — Perhaps a bit lucky that Joe Ralls couldn’t convert his Tuesday penalty, the Irons are steadily collecting the results they should to climb into the Top Seven mix.
Last week: 12
Season high: 9
Season low: 20

10. Bournemouth — And exhale. The Cherries lost four-straight, three against giants and one against Newcastle, before getting their footing against Huddersfield Town. Their reward? Liverpool this weekend.
Last week: 8
Season high: 6
Season low: 12

9. Brighton and Hove Albion  Back on track after some setbacks, Chris Hughton‘s men won the M23 Derby and could climb even higher with Burnley up next.
Last week: 13
Season high: 9
Season low: 19

8. Leicester City — Unbeaten in six, though the Foxes would’ve liked to have picked up a few more wins given the competition. Spurs visit this weekend.
Last week: 9
Season high: 7
Season low: 13

7. Manchester United — Think Chelsea’s on a dry run? United has three draws since their loss to Man City, and better hope Claudio Ranieri’s counter attacking ways haven’t fully sunk into Fulham this weekend. Maybe Paul Pogba really is a problem, by the way…
Last week: 7
Season high: 4
Season low: 14

6. Everton — Jordan Pickford‘s silly mistake against Liverpool cost the Toffees derby honors and the fifth spot in our rankings, and their lack of finish in a dominant performance against Newcastle nearly set them further back. And the Magpies traveling support was not kind to the former Sunderland man.
Last week: 7
Season high: 5
Season low: 13

5. Chelsea — Four points from 12, and Man City up next at Stamford Bridge. Could easily go from dueling for first to three points back of the Top Four inside of one month.
Last week: 4
Season high: 1
Season low: 5

4. Tottenham Hotspur — Rebounded nicely against Saints, but their lack of transfer purchases this summer is about to be put to the festive test.
Last week: 2
Season high: 2
Season low: 8

3. Arsenal — Don’t worry too much about the mistakes at Old Trafford; The back-to-back wins over Bournemouth and Spurs are impressive, and the latter feels like a milestone for the Unai Emery era.
Last week: 5
Season high: 2
Season low: 9

2. Liverpool — Got a scare early against Burnley but have won four since drawing Arsenal, and could really kick on should they get past Napoli in the Champions League to really get the good vibes rolling through Anfield.
Last week: 3
Season high: 1
Season low: 4

1. Man City — The leaders have conceded in four of five matches, and had to hold on for their Tuesday point at Watford. Some say Liverpool keeping pace with them will annoy them, but remember that Pep’s men are doing this while resting Sergio Aguero and nursing Kevin De Bruyne back to health.
Last week: 1
Season high: 1
Season low: 2

Chicharito scores twice, heats up as West Ham begins nice run of fixtures

1 Comment

Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez had some kind of day on Saturday at St. James’ Park.

West Ham United’s Mexican forward scored a pair of goals sandwiched around two flubbed, straight-forward chances as the Irons beat Newcastle United 3-0.

[ RECAP: Newcastle 0-3 West Ham ]

Hernandez, 30, made a perfectly-timed run into his office to nod an opener past Martin Dubravka before bursting onto a Marko Arnautovic flick for his second.

That goal was a marvel, the strong El Tri star roasting Fabian Schar before hitting a hard low shot into the goal.

It was a rare start for Hernandez, who said he’s had to relax and wait for his turn atop the attack.

From the BBC:

“I know I am doing well on the training ground. I have been patient. In this world when you have confidence it is easier to perform like I did today. I missed two but we did a good job, my team-mates.

“We have a big squad, with people waiting for an opportunity. We have another opportunity at home next up.”

Here’s Pellegrini:

“We arrive with the World Cup and Javier (Hernandez) was five weeks ill. It is not easy to recover his best moment but he is a scorer. When I start with him today because before that he could not play a complete game. I am happy for him.”

Felipe Anderson also scored for the Irons, who move into 13th place with 15 points. This is part of a promising run of fixtures of Pellegrini’s men, who next host Cardiff City and Crystal Palace before visiting Fulham and returning home for Watford before trips to Southampton and Burnley.

Chicharito brace leads West Ham at Newcastle

Leave a comment
  • Two goals for Chicharito
  • Newcastle out-attempts WHUFC 16-7
  • West Ham goes 13th
  • End of NUFC’s three-match win streak

Javier Hernandez scored a pair of goals to lead West Ham United to a 3-0 win over Newcastle United at St. James’ Park on Saturday.

Felipe Anderson added a third goal in stoppage time to give the Irons their second away win of the season.

Both teams started the day with 12 points, and West Ham is up to 13th with the win.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

The Irons led after 11 minutes of play, with Robert Snodgrass‘ right wing cross meeting the well-timed run of El Tri poached Hernandez for 1-0.

Newcastle came close to scoring via free kick, a sweeping left-footed cross from Matt Ritchie headed to West Ham keeper Lukasz Fabianski from Ayoze Perez.

The Spaniard missed a header in the 27th minute, and badly flubbed a stoppage time chance before Pablo Zabaleta slid to block an in-tight Salmon Rondon chance.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Chicharito missed two golden chances to make it 2-0, losing a Marko Arnautovic square pass in his feet before firing a 1v1 chance wide of Martin Dubravka‘s near post.

Fabian Schar won a corner when Perez slipped him deep into the right side of the box, but his shot was saved for a corner by Fabianski.

Instead, Chicharito made it 2-0 in the 64th when he perfectly timed his run to meet a headed flick from Arnautovic before beating Fabianski to the near post.

Mohamed Diame could reach a chance to make it 2-0 in the 66th.

Dubravka then stymied a Felipe Anderson breakaway.

Newcastle kept trying to find a way back, with missed crosses and low-percentage shots telling most of the story.

AT HALF: Chicharito on the board, Bournemouth level at Man City

Leave a comment

There are goals in all five 10 a.m. ET kickoffs, including a stunner at Leicester City and two red cards.

Man City 1-1 Bournemouth – NBCSN [STREAM]

Bernardo Silva‘s early goal was answered by Callum Wilson before halftime as the Cherries are hanging with the hosts.

Huddersfield Town 1-1 Brighton & Hove Albion – NBC Sports Gold [STREAM]

It’s level at the John Smith’s Stadium, where Mathias Jorgensen put the Terriers ahead in the first minute. His teammate Steve Mounie took a red card in the 32nd and Shane Duffy restored level terms for Brighton before the break.

Leicester City 2-0 Watford – NBC Sports Gold [STREAM]

A Jamie Vardy penalty and marvelous juggling goal from James Maddison have the Foxes holding the Hornets down.

Newcastle United 0-1 West Ham United – NBC Sports Gold [STREAM]

Javier Chicharito took one of West Ham’s few chances, and Ayoze Perez has missed several chances to level the score at St. James’ Park.

Crystal Palace 1-0 Burnley – NBC Sports Gold [STREAM]

The Eagles are deservedly ahead of lowly Burnley, with James McArthur‘s 16th minute the only goal as Palace is out-attempting the Clarets 9-0.