English Premier League

AFC Bournemouth 1 – 1 West Ham United

Dominic Solanke salvaged a draw for Bournemouth against West Ham in Andoni Iraola’s first Premier League game in charge of the Cherries.

Jarrod Bowen, who etched his name into West Ham history with the winner in last season’s Europa Conference League final against Fiorentina, curled a peach into the top corner from outside the box.

But Solanke, who is reportedly a target for the Hammers, latched on to Antoine Semenyo’s wayward shot, rounded goalkeeper Alphonse Areola and slotted in.

The woodwork was struck three times in a lively fixture at the Vitality Stadium.

Tomas Soucek and Manchester City target Lucas Paqueta hit a post for West Ham in each half, while Joe Rothwell crashed an effort off the crossbar from long range.

“Jarrod is becoming our major goalscorer,” said Moyes. “There’s a lot of talk about needing to buy a centre-forward, but I’m going to see if Jarrod can do the job.

“He’s got the instincts and the sharpness. Hull played him at centre-forward so it’s not me trying to be a genius.”

Pleasing aspects for both managers

This was a meeting of old and new.

West Ham’s only summer signing, Edson Alvarez from Ajax, is sidelined. James Ward-Prowse and Harry Maguire are expected to complete £30m moves from Southampton and Manchester United respectively, but those deals have not gone through yet.

West Ham manager David Moyes, whose job seemed under threat last season until leading them to their first trophy in a generation, remains in charge.

Michail Antonio, 33, led the line up front – a year after it looked like he was going to be phased out in favour of Gianluca Scamacca, who returned to Italy to join Atalanta after one season in London.

West Ham were without former captain Declan Rice, who joined Arsenal for £100m this summer. Paqueta started even though City are trying to sign him.

Soucek had their first chance, ghosting in behind the defence and on to Said Benrahma’s ball before his shot hit the far post.

Soucek headed over twice from Bowen corners, while Benrahma flashed a shot over from long range.

The goal eventually came when Soucek found Bowen, who curled a fine shot home.

Paqueta almost won the game for West Ham but his effort from 16 yards hit the post.

Bournemouth, on the other hand, have their third manager in a year in charge, with ex-Rayo Vallecano boss Iraola working in England for the first time. He replaced the sacked Gary O’Neil in the summer.

Iraola was known in Spain for direct attacking football, with full-backs heavily involved, and he gave debuts to summer signings Max Aarons and Milos Kerkez in the two full-back slots.

They showed good signs in this game, with David Brooks forcing two fine saves with strong efforts from long range and Rothwell hitting the bar from outside the box.

So it was probably fair enough when Semenyo’s shot hit Soucek and landed to Solanke. He went past the keeper before levelling the scores.

Bournemouth reportedly rejected an offer from West Ham for Solanke a week ago.

They brought on Dutch winger Justin Kluivert in the second half and the summer signing from Roma joined a select group of players.

He is the fourth player to feature in each of Europe’s top five leagues – the Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga, Ligue 1 and Serie A – after Florin Raducioiu, Christian Poulsen and Steven Jovetic.

Iraola told BBC Sport: “The game was quite level. We didn’t play well especially the beginning of each half; they were better than us.

“We improved during both halves and finished better than them. We had more of the ball but didn’t have so many clear chances. A draw is quite fair.

“Obviously [we are] a work in progress. We were slow moving the ball in the first half. Our defenders have to move it much faster higher up the pitch.

“Joe took more responsibility in the build-up. We were finding our forwards better through the wings. We’re still working on it.

“More players will come but we have to wait. These three weeks are strange – we don’t know what will happen.”

Moyes said: “It was a wee bit huff and puff at times. The first game of season, you’re never sure. One point isn’t bad but for long periods it looked like we’d win.

“We looked well organised. We played only at certain times. Jarrod scored a good goal.”

On Paqueta’s future, Moyes said: “There’s a price on everyone’s head. We don’t want Lucas to go, it’s as simple as that.

“But sometimes it’s difficult to say to these boys ‘you can’t join Manchester City or Real Madrid’, the biggest clubs in the world.”

BBC

Related Articles

Back to top button