City see off spirited Hammers with 3-1 win at London Stadium
West Ham United 1 (Ward-Prowse 36)
Manchester City 3 (Doku 46, Silva 76, Haaland 85)
Manchester City maintained their 100 per cent record with a hard-fought 3-1 win at West Ham this afternoon – a result which sees them climb to the top of the Premier League table
Second half goals from Jeremy Doku, Bernardo Silva and Erling Haaland saw City take the spoils after James Ward-Prowse had given the Hammers the lead in the first half.
Both sides wasted a host of chances in an open, entertaining game, Haaland inexplicably missing two open goals in the first half and Michail Antonio fluffing his lines when clean through on goal with the match delicately poised at 1-1.
City had the better of the opening exchanges, including a bizarre 10 seconds which saw a header and two shots from Rodri blocked before Ruben Dias’ header was saved by Alphonse Areola.
Then after 15 minutes the Hammers had a huge slice of fortune when Haaland shot wide of an open goal from four yards following Josko Gvardiol’s cross.
City were almost immediately made to pay when Nayef Aguerd got his header from a corner all wrong.
The Hammers were beginning to grow into the game. James Ward-Prowse failed to spot Jarrod Bowen clear in the box, instead opting to shoot. But he made up for his error in less than a minute, sending the London Stadium crowd wild as his header from Tomas Soucek’s cross was planted perfectly low past Ederson.
Haaland then had another glorious chance to score, his effort at the far post cleared off the line by Aguerd.
But City were level just 25 seconds after the restart. The impressive Doku cut inside Vladimir Coufal down the left and curled a shot into the far corner – a goal as simple as it was quick.
And they could have been in front just a couple of minutes later but for Gvardiol’s wild shot from the edge of the box which flew over Areola’s crossbar.
City were getting closer, though. First a free kick from Julian Alvarez hit the post, then Haaland’s acrobatic overhead after he was superbly found by Rodri was saved by Areola.
Despite the almost relentless City pressure, the Hammers were still benefitting from the odd breakaway. Michail Antonio found himself clear of Ruben Dias shortly before the hour mark, but his touch was heavy, allowing Ederson to spring off his line and grab the loose ball.
Haaland then saw another header saved as the game began to open up.
West Ham responded, Ederson pulling off a wonderful save from Kurt Zouma’s header from a corner. Areola then matched it with a fine stop of his own from Gvardiol.
But City were in front 15 minutes from time. Alvarez’s scooped pass found Silva, who poked the ball beyond the onrushing Ederson. Haaland could have made absolutely sure but wisely decided not to touch the ball, risking an offside flag. But Silva’s effort found the corner anyway.
Haaland could have made sure of the points shortly afterwards. Kyle Walker flew past Emerson down the right, crossed into the box but Norwegian’s effort was saved.
But he did eventually get his goal. With five minutes remaining he was played in beautifully by Silva and this time Haaland made no mistake, arrowing his shot past Areola to finally kill of the Hammers’ spirited challenge.
West Ham: Areola, Zouma, Coufal (Kehrer 87), Ward-Prowse, Antonio (Kudus 66), Paqueta, Alvarez, Bowen, Aguerd, Soucek (Ings 87), Emerson (Benrahma 66),
Manchester City: Ederson, Walker, Dias (Ake 90+4), Haaland (Lewis 90+4), Doku (Gomez 89), Rodri, Alvarez, Silva (Bobb 90+4), Gvardiol, Akanji, Foden (Nunes 66)