|match review copied from www.theguardian.com|
Contentious Callum Wilson goal rescues Bournemouth a point against West Ham
Ben Fisher at the Vitality Stadium
Date Published Tue 26 Dec ‘17 17.23 GMT
The image of a drenched David Moyes at the end of this madcap affair between two teams bereft of defensive dignity only begins to tell the story. This was a topsy-turvy tale in which West Ham United came back from behind to lead with only six minutes of injury time to play only for the referee, Bobby Madley, after a seemingly interminable conversation, to overrule Simon Long, his assistant who had flagged for offside, and award Bournemouth a 93rd-minute equaliser to cap a chaotic climax.
For Moyes the offside was immaterial given that the final touch on the ball’s descent beyond Adrián, the West Ham goalkeeper, came via Callum Wilson’s upper arm as the striker attempted to steer Nathan Aké’s goal-bound header home. The decision ensured both teams went home with a point – one which in truth does little for either side.
It was a decision that left the West Ham manager in a spin, with only Bournemouth, in 18th, keeping his team out of the relegation zone. “I think you could question the offside, I think you could question whether that was right or wrong because it looks pretty level,” Moyes said. “But what you can’t do is question whether the Bournemouth player put it in with his arm, so the goal should be ruled out one way or the other. We didn’t defend it well, but when the linesman’s flag goes up I think: ‘Oh good, we have got out of jail there a little bit.’ But to lose a goal like that is a killer.”
Asked if it was handball, Wilson said: “I’m not sure where it touched me but I think it was. I’ve tried to head it and missed it. I have had to be a little bit smart about the situation, tell the referee I didn’t touch the ball and obviously once its given, you know it goes down as yours. It shouldn’t have got to that point in the game anyway.”
Maybe not, but the enigmatic Marko Arnautovic looked to have sealed victory when he poked home the rebound from Javier Hernández’s saved close-range effort, shortly after he had seized on Asmir Begovic’s costly slip to equalise nine minutes from time.
After falling behind to James Collins’s header after seven minutes, Bournemouth rallied with the impressive midfielder Dan Gosling and then Aké crashing home to put Eddie Howe’s side in front. Lewis Cook, Gosling’s midfield partner, had a hand in both goals and it was no surprise Howe paid tribute to his team’s commanding engine room. “There were some big performances and I haven’t said that as much as I would have liked this season,” he said.
They peppered Adrián’s goal in search of a third but Begovic handed West Ham a route back in, slipping over inside the box as he went to kick the ball upfield. After flattering to deceive, Arnautovic – who started in a shirt bearing the name “Arnoutovic” before changing at the interval – hammered in his fourth and then fifth goals in five starts.
“I think after just telling him that if he wasn’t going to run he wasn’t going to play, I think he sort of took that on,” Moyes reflected.
Howe recognised his side had “got away with one” with Wilson’s leveller but they were fortunate to head down the tunnel at half-time with 10 men too: the referee had been lenient when he only showed a yellow to Simon Francis, the Bournemouth captain, for a high boot on Cheikhou Kouyaté. The West Ham midfielder was down for three minutes, during which time an incensed assistant, Stuart Pearce, was among those from the away dugout to make his voice heard by the fourth official, Mike Jones.
“I think if one of my players had done that everybody would have been screaming for him to be banned for six or seven games,” Moyes added. “In any other country in the world that would have been a sending off, not because it is deliberate – I don’t think he meant it – but because of raising a high boot. I just think if you get caught in that situation you’re liable to be sent off.”
MATCH FACTS, PLAYER RATINGS, PREMIER LEAGUE TABLE AND MATCH ZONE
Bournemouth (4-2-3-1): Begovic 5; Francis 6, S Cook 6.5, Ake 7, A Smith 6; L Cook 6.5, Gosling 6; Ibe 6, King 5 (Afobe 65mins, 6), Fraser 6.5 (Pugh 86); Wilson 6.
Subs not used: Boruc, Hyndman, Mahoney, Mousset, Simpson.
Booked: Francis, L Cook, Ake.
Goals: Gosling 29, Ake 57, Wilson 90.
Manager: Eddie Howe 6.5.
West Ham (3-5-2): Adrian 5.5; Collins 6.5, Ogbonna 6, Cresswell 6; Zabaleta 4.5 (Rice 76), Kouyate 5.5, Obiang 5.5 (Carroll 60, 6), Lanzini 5, Masuaka 5.5; Ayew 5.5 (Hernandez 61, 6), Arnautovic 5.
Subs not used: Reid, Sakho, Hart, Quina.
Booked: Zabaleta, Collins, Cresswell, Ogbonna.
Goals: Collins 7, Arnautovic 81, 89.
Manager: David Moyes 6.5.
Referee: Bobby Madley 6.
Man of the match: Nathan Ake.