West Ham United were beaten in the Premier League for the first time in 2018 on Saturday, with David Moyes’ men coming up short against Brighton and Hove Albion.
The Seagulls were the better side in a disappointing 3-1 defeat for the East London outfit, who will now look to regroup in their efforts to avoid being sucked into a relegation battle.
West Ham are without a host of key players currently and as such Moyes fielded the same starting XI for the second consecutive game.
The side was off the boil as a result, with plenty of the players not covering themselves in glory during the Brighton defeat.
However, the West Ham fans have taken to social media to praise one of the losing side, with the supporters clearly impressed with the impact that Joao Mario has made since moving to the club.
The Portugal international is on loan at the London Stadium from Inter Milan and has been dropped straight into the team after a January transfer.
Mario provided the assist for West Ham striker Javier Hernandez to score against Brighton and has looked dangerous in possession for the London club.
The Hammers faithful took to Twitter after the defeat, with most of the comments towards the team negative – but the Portuguese playmaker was praised for his performance in the game.
Mario very quietly goes about his business #COYI
— ⚒ Marky Perkins ⚒ (@Supagrova1973) February 3, 2018
Hernandez showing his quality. Exactly why we should be playing to his strengths. I think Mario is already making a difference to our play too. #COYI ⚒
— ⚽️⚒TOM'S WHUFC⚒⚽️ (@aldredtj) February 3, 2018
Half time 1-1 better later on in first half.Reid on maybe? Mario looks a class player. 3 points needed coyi IFBB
— West Ham (@Bubblesfanzone) February 3, 2018
— David Cann (@drwhofan_194) February 3, 2018
Kouyate has been excellent once again..Mario been good with the ball..Cant wait to see him linking up with Arnie & Lanzini..Great finish by Chica…A better 2nd half needed..Its up for grabs #coyi
— ⚒Imran Khan ⚒ (@imran484_khan) February 3, 2018
Another good performance from Mario (so far) #COYI
— Life of Iron (@Life_Of_Iron) February 3, 2018
And another assist from Joao Mario in the West Ham shirt. Pure quality.
— Alan (@_AlanWHUAlan_) February 3, 2018
Only players who were any good were Hernandez and Mario tbh
— Arthur Powell (@Arthur_WHU) February 3, 2018
Joao Mario a class above
— Fergus ⚒💚 (@Fergus_WHU) February 3, 2018
Mario has adapted to the prem nicely
— WestHam_BulletinNow (@WHUBulletin_Now) February 3, 2018
— Zaman Siddiqui (@ZamanWHU) February 3, 2018
— Nick Stampar 🌍 (@NStampar) February 4, 2018