Hammers climb table after 1st win

AFP
Andriy Yarmolenko scored twice on his first start for West Ham as they climbed off the foot of the English Premier League table with a 3-1 win away to Everton on Sunday.
AFP

Andriy Yarmolenko scored twice on his first start for West Ham as they climbed off the foot of the English Premier League table with a 3-1 win away to Everton on Sunday.

It was the Hammers’ first league win under manager Manuel Pellegrini, whose four previous top-flight games in charge of the east London club at the start of this season had all ended in defeat.

Chilean boss Pellegrini, celebrating his 65th birthday on Sunday, had spent £100 million pounds (US$129 million) bringing nine new signings to the London Stadium in the close season. But such had been the Hammers’ poor start to the new campaign that questions were already being asked about the former Manchester City manager’s long-term job prospects.

“It’s easy to say we were going to change, but I was absolutely convinced this is the way,” Pellegrini said. “We score goals and always try to continue scoring goals. I saw the players working every day of the week. I am convinced and the players are convinced.”

Ukrainian forward Yarmolenko, one of Pellegrini’s new signings, gave his manager some breathing space on Merseyside with a double strike that put the visitors 2-0 up just after the half-hour mark. Gylfi Sigurdsson pulled a goal back in first-half stoppage time before Marko Arnautovic restored West Ham’s two-goal lead in the 61st minute as Everton suffered their first defeat under manager Marco Silva.

“We didn’t play with enough quality to win the match,” Silva said. “It’s a tough result for us.”

Raul Jimenez scored the only goal of the game as Wolverhampton Wanderers continued their impressive start to the Premier League season with a 1-0 win at home to Burnley.

Victory lifted Wolves into the top half of the table but this result left Burnley still searching for their first league win of the campaign as they equalled a club record run of four successive Premier League defeats.

The win was no more than hosts Wolves deserved. They dominated and could easily have been at least two goals ahead before Jimenez broke the deadlock in the 61st minute when he turned in Matt Doherty’s cross. By contrast, Burnley rarely threatened and their only notable chances fell late in the match to Johann Berg Gudmundsson.

“I am very, very satisfied,” Wolves manager Nuno Espirito Santo said. “We played good football and stayed organized and created chances. Burnley are a good side and stayed in it until the end.

“If there is a ‘but,’ we could be more clinical. But if we can continue to make these many chances, it makes me very proud.”

Meanwhile Burnley boss Sean Dyche urged supporters to keep faith with the side, adding that their experience of losing streaks in the Premier League would stand the Clarets in good stead.

“We have been down this road before,” he said. “That is important now so we can realize it (climbing the table) can be done.”

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