West Ham rescue draw after Phillips mistake on debut

40

A second-half penalty from James Ward-Prowse saved Kalvin Phillips from embarrassment and secured a Premier League point for West Ham in their match against Bournemouth at London Stadium.

Phillips, the recent addition to West Ham’s squad, experienced a forgettable debut as his misplaced pass handed the ball directly to Dominic Solanke, who promptly gave Bournemouth the lead in under three minutes.

But West Ham were gifted a way back into the game in the 61st minute when Lloyd Kelly caught Mohammed Kudus in the penalty area and Ward-Prowse fired his spot-kick straight down the middle.

Neither side was able to find a winner on a cold night in the capital.

“We didn’t play particularly well with the ball, we didn’t pass it well,” West Ham manager David Moyes told BBC Match of the Day.

“Anyway, we got something out of it and we’ll take that. We’ll hopefully improve.”

The Hammers, without a win in their past four games, stay sixth in the Premier League table, while Bournemouth move 12th, eight points clear of the relegation zone.

Phillips gets rare start at London Stadium

Struggling for playing time since his £45m transfer from Leeds to Manchester City in July 2022, Phillips, on loan to Manchester City, faced a challenging debut for West Ham on Friday night.

Making only his third Premier League start in the last two seasons, Phillips, with just his second touch in a West Ham shirt, inadvertently played a poor pass from Kurt Zouma straight to Solanke, who capitalized and scored from close range.

West Ham’s lackluster performance in the first half drew boos from the crowd at halftime, despite Bowen’s glancing header testing Bournemouth keeper Pedro Neto.

The hosts’ equalizer emerged after the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) prompted referee Tim Robinson to review the pitchside monitor, leading to a reversal of his initial no-penalty decision.

Ward-Prowse converted from the spot, but West Ham struggled to create additional clear-cut chances and faced further criticism, with a smaller group of supporters booing them at full-time.

Having failed to secure a victory in any of their first five games in the calendar year for the first time since 2010, West Ham, though still holding a European spot, faces challenges in the Premier League table.

As for Phillips, he did tighten up after the break and came off for Danny Ings to a warm reception in the 68th minute.

“I know the kind of player Phillips is and the quality he has,” said team-mate Kudus to Premier League Productions. “When you come to a different team and system it takes time to get used to everything.

“I believe in him so much and I have no doubts about him. Next game he will be better.”

Bournemouth will rue missed chances

Bournemouth will rue the missed opportunity to secure all three points in London, as they dominated chances in the first half.

After the game, manager Andoni Iraola expressed to BBC Match of the Day, “I believe if there was a winner today, it should have been Bournemouth.”

West Ham goalkeeper Alphonse Areola made two outstanding saves to thwart Antoine Semenyo and Marcus Tavernier, both of whom were set up by Solanke.

Despite West Ham’s equalizer, Bournemouth continued to create better opportunities, with Kelly’s attempt saved from a difficult angle, and Ryan Christie pulling a shot wide.

“We had the most clear chances,” added Iraola. “We probably weren’t clinical enough to score a second, go 2-0 up and win the game.

“OK, we get just one point today but we have to value it. We were closer to the three points than losing. We have to continue pushing.”

Bournemouth enjoyed success in the FA Cup in January, but are still waiting for their first Premier League win since 26 December, after two defeats and this draw since then.

They also had a busy deadline day as Getafe striker Enes Unal joined on loan, while Owen Bevan and Kieffer Moore left the club, also on loan.