Saturday, January 23

Great moment for Afolayan as Hammers demolish Donny

West Ham 4 Doncaster 0 (FA Cup)

It's on to BBC iPlayer for this one as Fornals sweeps home in the second minute after a cross from Fredericks. News filters through on WhatsApp that a tardy Matt has missed the goal as he was fetching his and Lisa's jalapeno cheese toasties. Middle-class fans eh?

Lanzini misses a great chance after fine interplay with Benrahma and then it's the false nine's Yarmolenko's turn to fire wide when well-placed. A cavalier Moyes is playing three number tens in Benrahma, Fornals and Lanzini and the Hammers' midfield play is too much for Darren Moore's League One side. Number two arrives after a great through ball from Benrahma finds Yarmolenko, who scores with a lovely dink over the keeper.

Thankfully the result is never in doubt during the second half. The third is a Butler own goal after Mark Noble's corner causes confusion in the Doncaster defence. Soucek forces two good saves  from Balcombe with a great volley and then a header. Doncaster hit the bar through Matt Smith but before the Time Lord can find any more time and space he's subbed.

Moyes is able to bring on young striker Oladapo Afolayan for Soucek after 70 minutes. This results in the game's best moment as Fredericks bursts down the right and fires a cross-shot at Balcombe. Afolayan shows good instincts to tap home the rebound and produces a lovely smile after scoring on his debut. That's the way to celebrate Sebastien.

Benrahma tests the keeper with a free kick but it's a shame he can't get a tap-in to boost his confidence. But we get to see another two debuts in goalkeeper Trott and the promising Baptiste on the right. All in all a professional performance and rather enjoyable viewing. The Cup Final breakfast at Nigel's gaff in Kew Gardens remains on.

PLAYER RATINGS: Fabianski 6 (Trott n/a); Fredericks 7 (Baptiste 6), Diop 6, Balbuena 6, Johnson 6; Fornals 7, Soucek 6 (Afolayan 7), Noble 6, Benrahma 7, Lanzini 6; Yarmolenko 7.  

3 comments:

Mj said...

Shouldn't we be putting Afolayan on the bench a bit more often? He's in his 20's, not that young

Pete May said...

Yep he needs some games under his belt

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