West Ham United secured the first point of the David Moyes era on Friday night, battling from a goal down to draw 1-1 at home against Leicester City.

The result was not enough to move the Hammers out of the Premier League relegation zone, but here are three things we learned from the clash with the Foxes:

There is fight in this team

With Marc Albrighton opening the scoring for the away side after just eight minutes, those in attendance at the London Stadium could have been forgiven for thinking that they were in for another long night.

However, the Irons rallied, weathered a series of Leicester counter-attacks and grew into the game as the first half progressed.

Angelo Ogbonna nearly levelled as goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel parried his close-range header and the Dane had to be alert again when Manuel Lanzini flashed an angled free-kick towards the goal.

The equaliser came in first-half stoppage time as Cheikhou Kouyate nodded home from a corner, via a deflection on the line from Danny Simpson.

Although the second period produced only half chances, West Ham were always on top, spurred on by raucous support, and a bit of extra quality in the final third could have turned one point into three.

Overall though this was a step in the right direction following the disappointment of the defeat to Watford last weekend.

Moyes’ men showed grit and determination, two qualities that are going to be needed in the weeks and months to come.

Arnautovic is key

Having turned in a lively display at Vicarage Road last Sunday without ever looking back to full capacity, Marko Arnautovic finally produced a performance worthy of the transfer fee that was stumped up to tempt him away from Stoke City over the summer.

The Austrian was not at his absolute best on Friday night but his efforts down the right flank were key to his side getting a foothold in the game.

His ability on the ball has never been in question, but Arnautovic’s work rate was fabulous against Leicester and he was often seen helping out his back four, particularly when they were under pressure in the opening half hour.

If the 28-year-old can build on this over the next few matches then he will become an instrumental part of Moyes’ team.

A trio of Arnautovic, Lanzini and Michail Antonio, who is on his way back from injury, in behind Javier Hernandez up front would be an attack to rival any outside the top six in the Premier League.

Centre-back problems remain

Whilst Moyes can take plenty of positives from Friday’s fixture, one problem that remains apparent is at centre-half.

Both Winston Reid and Angelo Ogbonna will be disappointed with their respective roles in Leicester’s goal, with the former caught out of position in the first instance allowing Jamie Vardy to get a cross in, whilst the latter let the ball roll under his foot for Albrighton to slide past Joe Hart.

The centre of defence has been an issue for some time; Jose Fonte was signed from Southampton in January to partner Reid in an experienced pairing but has never rediscovered the form he showed during his time on the south coast.

With the Portugal international out injured until the new year, perhaps now would be the time to give someone like Declan Rice an extended run in the team.

Regardless, it is an area that Moyes must address sooner rather than later if he wants the club to climb the table.

The number of defensive errors is mounting up and it is costing West Ham points.

Advertisement
  • bubbles

    It’s a start . Moyes is good enough to see that Noble isn’t … or perhaps he doesn’t understand the game … ?? We must build on this and get a run going . Noble cannot contribute anything from the bench so he is still a waste of a shirt . Give the seat to one of the youngsters to get match day ready . Sakho must replace Carroll , who can influence a game as a sub but we don’t need Hernandez who is a luxury player . A fit Antonio can replace Masarakou who is also good from the bench . COYI