David Moyes lauds 'great result' as West Ham edge Everton at Goodison Park

Ogbonna's header proves the difference to ensure Hammers climb above Toffees in Premier League standings

Perhaps it was just like old times for David Moyes. He celebrated many a hard-fought 1-0 win at Goodison Park over 11 years in charge of Everton. Having not tasted victory on his old stomping ground since his departure in 2013, and having been sacked by Manchester United after defeat at Goodison in 2014, a second triumph here in 2021 summed up his change of fortunes. His present beat his past as West Ham both overcame and leapfrogged Everton. “A great result,” said Moyes.

In the process, he came to his own defence, preserving one of his records. Everton’s best start to a Premier League campaign came courtesy of his class of 2004/05. That distinction would have passed to the current crop with victory. Instead, Moyes inflicted Rafa Benitez’s first defeat at Goodison Park as Everton manager.

There was a certain Moyesian quality to the winner, with Angelo Ogbonna heading in Jarrod Bowen’s corner, but West Ham had shown more ambition in their performance. They had almost two-thirds of possession as Moyes’ band of attacking midfielders proved elusive.

Having mustered eight top-eight finishes with Everton, he looks eminently capable of securing a second in a row with West Ham. “I want the team to challenge, I want the team to play wherever we go,” he said. “I think we have a good team.” So are they proving.

But Everton were unable to build on their draw at Old Trafford. Benitez has shown an adaptability when there have been absentees which has been reminiscent of Moyes but this time Everton missed the injured Richarlison and Dominic Calvert-Lewin. Their clearest chance fell to Alex Iwobi, who swung and missed, failing even to make contact with the bright Demarai Gray’s enticing cross as he illustrated why his goalscoring record is so poor.

Salomon Rondon at least connected with Andros Townsend’s centre, but his glancing header went wide and a workhorse is still waiting for his first Everton goal. “Against a good team you have to take your chances,” Benitez rued.

Everton v West Ham player ratings

West Ham had more. Michail Antonio led the line with great verve, even if he marred his display with a booking for diving. Declan Rice produced a series of driving runs. “He was head and shoulders above everybody on the pitch,” Moyes said.

But Bowen was also terrific. He was involved both times West Ham had the ball in the net, with the offside Tomas Soucek converting the rebound after Bowen’s shot was parried. Jordan Pickford made a brilliant late save to keep out Bowen’s curler. Before then, Pickford argued he was fouled by Antonio as a corner was given.

“When you have a player blocking the keeper in the six-yard area it is a free-kick,” said Benitez. “Why do you have a six-yard box? It is for the keeper.”

But Benitez had been wary of West Ham’s set-piece threat and they now have 29 goals from dead-ball situations, the most in the league, in Moyes’ second reign. And when Ogbonna outjumped Ben Godfrey, a familiar plan brought Moyes a familiar feeling: victory at Goodison.

Updated: October 17th 2021, 4:23 PM
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