Premier League
Bournemouth 3 West Ham United 3

Tuesday, 26th December 2017
by Staff Writer

West Ham were denied all three points by a hugely controversial referee's decision at the Vitality Stadium this afternoon.

Leading 3-2, with the game deep into added-on time, a Nathan Ake effort was initially (correctly) ruled out for hand ball by a linesman - before referee Bobby Madley inexplicably overturned his assistant's decision to deny the Hammers a second successive Premier League away win.

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However West Ham should probably be grateful with the point, following another disjointed performance against a fellow struggler in which United looked more like a collection of individuals that a team - and not for the first time this season.

Once again David Moyes' side got off to a flyer with captain for the day James Collins, reinstalled at the centre of defence, climbing unmarked to head West Ham into the lead from an Aaron Cresswell corner.

The hosts restored parity on the half hour mark through Dan Gosling, taking advantage of some defensive uncertainly by West Ham as they attempted, unsuccessfully, to defend another set piece. Level at the break, it was Bournemouth who struck first in the second half when Nathan Ake swept home a loose ball inside the penalty area.

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Then, with West Ham seemingly heading towards yet another miserable and unwelcome defeat, Cherries 'keeper Asmir Begovic bizarrely slipped whilst in possession, allowing the watchful Marko Arnautovic to pick up the ball and fire into an empty net.

The Austrian was then on hand in the final minute of normal time to score what West Ham and their vocal band of travelling fans felt, with some justification, would be the final - and winning - goal. A deep cross was knocked back across goal where Arnautovic was waiting to poke the ball over the line to make it 3-2.

But with the game in the fourth of six added-on minutes, Bournemouth grabbed a bizarre equaliser as Callum Wilson's effort - which TV replays suggested was both offside and handled - was allowed to stand, despite having initially been chalked off by the referee's assistant.

Despite this, official Madley - who was positioned centrally, some 22 yards from goal - consulted with his assistant before overruling his decision giving Bournemouth a share of the spoils - a decision that left West Ham, including manager David Moyes, seething.

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Madley, who has past history with West Ham and controversial goals was also criticised for failing to dismiss Simon Francis for dangerous play after kicking Cheikhou Kouyate square in the face with a raised foot, leaving the Senegal international requiring lengthy treatment.

The errant official was also accused of failing to spot a deliberate punch by Josh King on Kouyate's fellow team mate Pedro Obiang during the first half that, if seen, would surely have resulted in his instant dismissal.

The point leaves West Ham in 17th spot, just one place above the relegation zone with a fixture against 18th-placed West Bromwich Albion to come next.

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West Ham Utd: Adrian, Zabaleta (Rice 79), Collins, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Masuaku, Obiang (Carroll 60), Kouyate, Ayew (Hernandez 61), Lanzini, Arnautovic.

Subs not used: Hart, Reid, Quina, Sakho.

Goals: Collins (7), Arnautovic (81, 89).

Booked: Zabaleta, Collins, Cresswell, Ogbonna.

AFC Bournemouth: Begovic, Francis, S.Cook, Ake, Smith, Gosling, L.Cook, Ibe, Fraser (Pugh 86), King (Afobe 65), Wilson.

Subs not used: Boruc, Hyndman, Mahoney, Mousset, Simpson.

Goals: Gosling 29, Ake (57), Wilson (90+1).

Booked: Francis, L Cook, Ake.

Attendance: TBC

Referee: Bobby Madley.

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Player Ratings

Adrian San Miguel Del Castillo
Commanded the defence well, distribution was second to none and made quite a few world class saves to keep his side afloat.

Pablo Zabaleta
Dealt with Leroy Sane really well down the left-hand side despite not being as quick and agile as his former team mate.

Arthur Masuaku
Was full of energy in the first half attacking with purpose and beating players with ease. Was relatively weak in defence in the closing stages of the match allowing crosses to be put into the box from his side.

Angelo Ogbonna
Gelled well with Aaron Cresswell and prevented City from creating many chances.

Declan Rice
Very decent in defence, not at all carried away by the occasion. Already a very mature player.

Aaron Cresswell
Played a commanding role in West Ham's relative success in defence cutting off the supply line to Ag? 1/4 ero.

Pedro Obiang
Kept the Man City midfield quiet and picked out some good incisive passes going forward.

Cheikhou Kouyate
Was a nuiscance for his opponents in midfield with his bulky presence.

Manuel Lanzini
West Ham's focal point going forward converting defence into attack in a flick of a switch with his agility and intelligence.

Edimilson Fernandes
Kept a very cool head in midfield.

Michail Antonio
A big threat for Man City in defence causing problems on the counter attack with his speed. Wasn't as productive when moved into a midfield role after the withdrawal of Kouyate.


Diafra Sakho
(Replaced Kouyate) Didn't pose the same threat as Antonio and was very isolated up front.

Marko Arnautovic
(Replaced Lanzini) Decent in defence and created, almost singlehandedly, the opportunity that almost put West Ham back on level terms.

Andre Ayew
(Replaced Antonio) No comments.

Nathan Trott
Did not play.

Ben Johnson
Did not play.

Domingos Quina
Did not play.

Anotnio Martinez
Did not play.

Match Facts

West Ham United: Adrian San Miguel Del Castillo, Pablo Zabaleta, Arthur Masuaku, Angelo Ogbonna, Declan Rice, Aaron Cresswell, Pedro Obiang, Cheikhou Kouyate, Manuel Lanzini, Edimilson Fernandes, Michail Antonio.

Goals: James Collins 7 Marko Arnautovic  81 Marko Arnautovic  89              .

Booked: Pablo Zabaleta 37 James Collins 55 Aaron Cresswell 56      .

Sent off: None.

Bournemouth: Ospina, Debuchy, Chambers, Holding, Kolasinac, Coquelin (Dasilva 90), Elneny, Willock (Sheaf 84), Walcott, Welbeck, Giroud (Nelson 78).

Subs not used: Macey, Reine-Adelaide, Akpom, Nketiah.

Goals: Callum Wilson (90+3), Nathan Aké (57), Dan Gosling (29).

Booked: Simon Francis (32), Lewis Cook (71), Nathan Aké (79).

Sent off: None.

Referee: tbc.

Attendance: 0.

Man of the Match: Marko Arnautovic.