Honours even as West Ham and Bournemouth are all square on the south coast
PUBLISHED: 17:08 28 September 2019 | UPDATED: 17:08 28 September 2019
PA Wire/PA Images
The Hammers earn late draw at Bournemouth as Cresswell scores again
Bournemouth 2 West Ham United 2
Andriy Yarmolenko and Aaron Cresswell carried on from where they left off last weekend as they again found the net to secure a point for the hard-working Hammers, who extended their unbeaten Premier League run to six matches.
After scoring in the victory over Manchester United six days earlier, the duo were each on target yet again for Manuel Pellegrini's men at the Vitality Stadium.
Yarmolenko put West Ham ahead inside 10 minutes in this Top Six clash before Josh King levelled shortly afterwards following a VAR review.
And although Callum Wilson put Bournemouth in front seconds into the second-half, Cresswell popped up bang on cue, with a quarter-hour remaining, to earn West Ham a richly-deserved draw.
Following his side's Carabao Cup capitulation at Oxford United on Wednesday evening, Pellegrini reverted to type for this return to league action by making nine changes from the team that had slumped to that forlorn four-goal slaying at the hands of the League One side.
Only Issa Diop and Pablo Fornals retained their shirts as the Hammers kicked off in fifth-spot - just one point and one place ahead of their hosts - and they took just 10 minutes to begin to awake from their nightmare at the Kassam Stadium.
Collecting from Mark Noble on the left-flank, Felipe Anderson curled an inch-perfect cross to the far post, where Sebastién Heller used every ounce of strength to control and patiently lay the ball to the supporting Yarmolenko, who cleverly spun Nathan Aké before firing an angled eight-yarder beyond the outstretched right-glove of Aaron Ramsdale.
The Cherries had not fared much better than the Hammers with a two-goal reverse at the Pirelli Stadium in midweek and, having seen their own Carabao Cup challenge go for a Burton, they had also made wholesale changes with only Dominic Solanke keeping his place.
But having fallen behind to the Ukrainian's third goal of the season, they took just eight minutes to level, when Steve Cook swung a hanging, right-wing cross towards the penalty spot, where Aké chested down for King to lash the ball beyond Łukasz Fabiański from six yards.
With the assistant referee Constantine Hatzidakis raising his flag for offside, the Hammers looked to have escaped but with the locals hopefully chanting: 'VAR, VAR…' a nail-biting delay followed before the initial decision was overturned as referee Stuart Attwell signalled an equaliser to the joy of those insistent home supporters.
Indeed, Bournemouth might even have taken the lead on the half-hour, when the red-faced Angelo Ogbonna sliced an attempted corner behind for a corner that Solanke headed just over the angle and, in the ensuing goalmouth melée, Fabiański picked up a knock that forced his departure as Roberto took over between the posts.
At the other end, Diego Rico was booked for a cynical trip on the escaping Yarmolenko and, after Cresswell sent the consequent free-kick dipping over Ramsdale's crossbar, skipper Noble then ripped an angled effort into the side-netting.
In first-half stoppage time, Anderson's acrobatic scissor kick was diverted over the top by the Bournemouth 'keeper, who then saw Ogbonna meet Fornals' corner but his header was deflected wide to keep it all-square at the interval.
The Hammers may well have finished the opening period strongly but within seconds of the restart, they found themselves behind, when Solanke cut in from the left along the 18-yard line before finding King, who squared into Callum Wilson and his low shot from the edge of the area flew beyond Roberto's despairing dive and inside the base of the 'keeper's right-hand post.
Aké thought he had put yet more daylight between the two teams on 55 minutes but, with Roberto unsighted by Solanke - who also appeared to get a slight touch - the Dutchman's close-range effort was ruled out for offside following another VAR review.
In response, Yarmolenko curled an 18-yarder inches wide of the left post and, after Roberto had steered Callum Wilson's stinging shot aside for a corner, Manuel Lanzini came on for Fornals.
The Argentinian's arrival brought some much-needed urgency to West Ham's play and Anderson almost equalised, when he met Yarmolenko's deep cross with a far-post header that Ramsdale smothered.
But the Cherries were still a threat and when the probing Harry Wilson weaved his way to edge of the area, namesake Callum wastefully fired straight into the crouching Roberto's knees.
It was a costly miss, for with a quarter-hour remaining, Yarmolenko again picked out Anderson at the far post and spotting the in-rushing Cresswell, the Brazilian's cushioned header fell perfectly for the left-back, whose eight-yard volley flew off the diving Steve Cook before ripping into the net.
Now level, the Hammers replaced skipper Noble with former on-loan Bournemouth midfielder, Jack Wilshere, while Declan Rice's stinging 25-yarder was beaten aside by the relieved Ramsdale.
Both Steve Cook and Jefferson Lerma also received late bookings for spiteful challenges on the battered Haller, whose pain quickly disappeared at the sound of a final whistle signalling the continuation of that unbeaten run now stretching to six matches.
CHERRIES: Ramsdale, Stacey (L. Cook 89) Rico, S. Cook, Aké, Lerma, Billing (Francis 89), H. Wilson (Danjuma Groeneveld 74), King, C. Wilson, Solanke. Unused subs: Boruc, Surman, Ibe, Mepham.
HAMMERS: Fabiański (Roberto 33) Fredericks, Cresswell, Diop, Ogbonna, Noble (Wilshere 75), Rice, Fornals (Lanzini 67), Yarmolenko, Anderson, Haller. Unused subs: Balbuena, Zabaleta, Snodgrass, Ajeti.
Booked: Rico (32), Diop (79), S. Cook (87), Lerma (90).
Referee: Stuart Attwell.
If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Romford Recorder. Click the link in the orange box below for details.