Carabao Cup
West Ham United 5 Hull City 1

Tuesday, 22nd September 2020
by Chris Wilkerson

West Ham took another comfortable win in the Carabao Cup in their stride, but the dominant 5-1 win was only half the story.

Not long before kick-off, both Josh Cullen and Issa Diop were withdrawn from the squad, and it was soon revealed both men and their manager David Moyes had tested positive for COVID-19.

All three left the stadium before the match started, but it will leave questions as to what impact this has on preparations for upcoming matches, as well as concerns over the current safety measures around the squad and the health of the three men.


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The game itself was nowhere near as dramatic, with the second-string side full of expensive recruits and established Premier League players - although academy products did make up three of the four defenders (Ashby, Alese and Johnson).

They will rarely have easier nights in a West Ham defence, Hull not mustering a shot in the opening 45 minutes and rarely threatening outside of their consolation goal.

The first half saw the home side take control at the London Stadium, the gap in quality extremely obvious. Hull City will rightfully point out that forward and goalscorer Sebastien Haller costs considerably more than their whole side, as does Felipe Anderson.

With Yarmolenko joining them in the front three, the attacking potency was always likely to be enough to bully League One Hull, the Tigers and their claws not ever threatening to start mauling.

All that being said, the first major opening was created and almost finished off by young Harrison Ashby, a late name to the starting eleven to replace Diop and make his first professional start.

A raking Balbuena diagonal was taken down in stride by the young right back, who made his way around two defenders and into the area before forcing a great save from Hull goalkeeper George Long.

It was a warning sign, and the goals were not long in coming.


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The first was a wonderfully crafted and finished goal for Snodgrass. Lanzini won a loose ball in midfield and passed inside to Yarmolenko. The Ukrainian dinked a ball to the other side of the area, where Snodgrass was unmarked. He let it drop and volleyed it across goal and into the far corner, leaving the goalkeeper with no chance.

After 20 neat but frankly dull minutes, Lanzini went close from the edge of the area, another signal of West Ham?EUR(TM)s intent.

As before, Hull were powerless to stop West Ham scoring once more. This time it came right on the stroke of half-time.

Lanzini was once more free in the middle of the park, passing forward, and although it was easily intercepted, it was only loosely controlled by the defender. Yarmolenko pounced, taking the ball, beating two men and running into the area before rolling it across for Haller to poke under the goalkeeper for his third in this competition this season.

It wasn?EUR(TM)t too long after the resumption that the game was put beyond any doubt.

A quite innocuous corner to the far post floated over everyone, but Haller went crashing to the ground. The referee saw the infringement, the striker hauled down and a penalty given.

Up stepped Yarmolenko, who passed it neatly into one corner as the goalkeeper flew to the other.


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The 3-0 scoreline seemed to wake some fight up from inside the Hull players, although it presented itself with late and aggressive challenges that earned yellow cards.

Two initial quick cautions seemed not to hinder Hull?EUR(TM)s desire to leave a mark on someone, and it led to Harrison Ashby?EUR(TM)s first start being cut short around 60 minutes, the youngster attended to with gas and air on the pitch after one frankly ridiculous challenge.

Longelo-Mbule came on for him, moving across to left back. He was immediately into the action, beaten by Wilks as the winger pushed into the area and slotted in through Randolph?EUR(TM)s legs to make it 3-1 and give them a slight chance of a comeback.

It didn?EUR(TM)t really affect West Ham, who could only be criticised for wasting openings through Snodgrass, Haller and Lanzini, nothing blatant but enough space that one should have done better.

Eventually they did finish it off, and at style. First was Lanzini passing through the defence on the edge of the area for Haller, who dribbled around the goalkeeper and poked into an empty net, another two-goal performance for the Frenchman.

A second stoppage-time goal followed almost immediately after, Anderson cutting back after a run down the left wing and Yarmolenko curling into the far corner to make it 5-1, which actually probably was a fair reflection of just how easy the game had been.

Attention turns now to Wolves on Sunday, with no delay being considered as of yet, although test results across the rest of the week could change that.


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Player Ratings

Darren Randolph
Not really tested, harsh to criticise him for the goal from such close range.


Ben Johnson
Stayed reasonably defensive throughout and showed restraint.


Harrison Ashby
Barely tested defensively, got up and down the flank all game before being forced off. Deserved to score in the first half.


Aji Alese
Barely tested defensively, got up and down the flank all game before being forced off. Deserved to score in the first half.


Fabian Balbuena
Another not really tested, a couple hesitations were a worry but Hull offered nothing to bother him.


Jack Wilshere
A relatively quiet and neat performance. Looked to enjoy playing with Lanzini in particular. He basically did all that was needed and was disciplined enough to sit deep.


Robert Snodgrass
Wasteful on a few occasions, but his goal was lovely. Otherwise he was similar to Wilshere, neat and tidy but with the freedom to roam forward more.


Manuel Lanzini
Much maligned these days, Lanzini was involved in almost everything going forward and linked with Haller, Yarmolenko and Anderson really well. Wasteful in the final third when shooting, but always looked dangerous and made things happen. Deserved a goal.


Andriy Yarmolenko
He found it far too easy and at times it looked like he knew it, a little casual but when you score two and create two, who can complain?


Felipe Anderson
Started to create and play lovely football as West Ham dominated, with some passing that deserved better from those he found. Good to see him get an assist and look so happy when the team scored.


Sebastien Haller
Two good goals, worked hard and ran the channels, linked well with the players making runs off him. That final part is important, it?EUR(TM)s what he needs and the likes of Lanzini and Yarmolenko make sure to get near, link well and move off him.



Substitutes

Emmanuel Longelo
(Replaced Ashby, 67) Caught cold for the Hull goal seconds after he came on, but got into things and got forward down the left to support attacks.


David Martin
Did not play.


Nathan Trott
Did not play.


Conor Coventry
Did not play.


Jarrod Bowen
Did not play.


Xande Silva
Did not play.


n/a
Did not play.



Match Facts

West Ham United: Darren Randolph, Ben Johnson, Harrison Ashby, Aji Alese, Fabian Balbuena, Jack Wilshere, Robert Snodgrass, Manuel Lanzini, Andriy Yarmolenko, Felipe Anderson, Sebastien Haller.

Goals: Robert Snodgrass 18 Sebastien Haller 45 Andriy Yarmolenko 56 Sebastien Haller 91 Andriy Yarmolenko 92          .

Booked: None.

Sent off: None.

Hull City: Long, Coyle, Jones, McLoughlin, Fleming, Batty, Smallwood (Honeyman 17), Scott (Wilks 61), Jones, Mayer (Lewis-Potter 61), Magennis.

Subs not used: Ingram, Burke, Emmanuel, Samuelsen.

Goals: Wilks (70).

Booked: #17 (55), Honeyman (62), Fleming (65).

Sent off: None.

Referee: Simon Hooper.

Attendance: 0.

Man of the Match: Andriy Yarmolenko.