West Ham broke out of the dreaded drop zone with a fantastic and formidable four-goal win when they bowled Forest over with a spectacular second-half salvo.

Despite dominating through the first 70 deadlocked minutes, the Hammers then simply went on a rampage as they scored a quick quartet of late goals thanks to a deadly double from debutant Danny Ings plus goals from captain Declan Rice and substitute Michail Antonio.

A cocktail of unfavorable results mixed in with last Sunday’s 2-0 loss to Tottenham Hotspur had seen David Moyes’ men start 18th after winning one of their previous 11 Premier League games.

And following that lackluster defeat in north London, Moyes made a quartet of changes as Ings, Saïd Benrahma, Ben Johnson and the recovering Lucas Paquetá replaced replacements Antonio, Flynn Downes, Emerson Palmieri and Thilo Kehrer.

Within the opening minute the hungry Ings meandered into the Forest box but an alert Keylor Navas came off his line to frustrate the Hammers striker and though Angelo Ogbonna could only dispatch a 20-yard throw for a throw-in , the Scotsman did. They have been pleased with their team’s impressive start.

Indeed, forcing five corners in the first 10 minutes, West Ham had Navas on red alert, the Costa Rican goalkeeper, capped 110 times, deflected a flag shot over his own bar before dropping another in an assault on home culminating in Felipe inadvertently sending a punt attempt to the base of his left post.

Having lost just one of their last seven games, Forest came to the capital five places and five points clear of the Hammers, but despite moving past Moyes’s men in the Premier League table in recent weeks, they have only managed one win, three draws and a trio of goals on their travels this season.

After last week’s morale-boosting draw with Manchester City, Steve Cooper made a couple of changes with Chris Wood and Neco Williams taking place of the injured Serge Aurier (calf) and substitute Danilo, who joined the former Hammers Andre Ayew and Jesse Lingard. On the bench.

Incredibly, Forest have fielded no fewer than 33 different players this season but, in addition to seeing Felipe’s header deflected over the bar by Łukasz Fabiański, the 11 out on the Stratford surface struggled to get the ball out of their own half during the first 20 minutes. as West Ham quickly looked to break the deadlock.

Midway through the first period, however, support Morgan Gibbs-White found himself with time and space to unleash a 20-yard shot that exploded off Fabiański’s gloves, while on the other end, Ings hit a point-blank header. at Souček’s back before Benrahma cleverly combined with Paquetá and slipped into the box where he forced Navas to a low save.

The record-breaking Paquetá had the home crowd drooling 10 minutes before half-time with a passage of tricks and moves, but when the Brazilian was interspersed with Jonjo Shelvey and Wood, alarm bells rang across the East End as he twisted on the grass holding the suspicious shoulder that has dogged his season.

Fortunately, the South American playmaker was able to carry on to a goalless first half, although Aaron Cresswell came on for the second half in place of Vladimír Coufal (heel) and within seconds of his arrival, the veteran left-back floated a corner to the first post, where Souček’s header went over the crossbar.

In the 55th minute, with Stratford downpours falling from the sky, Jarrod Bowen stepped forward and fired a low 20-yard shot that skidded across the greasy surface and over the base of Navas’s right hand and then the borrowed Paris Saint of Forest. -Germain’s goalkeeper had to run from his goal to frustrate Ings.

In response, Brennan Johnson sent a 20-yard pass past Fabianski’s outstretched right glove and the post before Ayew came on for Shelvey, while Fabiański also retired after being accidentally caught by Felipe, leaving the former PSG goalkeeper , Alphonse Areola, to replace the axe. polish plug.

However, with Areola still putting on the gloves on one end, the Hammers finally and deservedly broke the deadlock on the other.

In the 70th minute, Ings started and finished the move that secured his first goal in claret and blue, blasting the ball deflected towards Bowen, before Aston Villa’s £15m January signing reached the danger zone. de Forest, where he got between Joe Worrall and Williams. to pack home.

And with the celebrations still subsiding, just three minutes later Benrahma stormed down the left side of the box before crossing into the box, where Ings slotted the ball into the net despite Renan Lodi’s efforts to prevent him from crossing the line. .

After turning down a permanent summer move to the East End, former Hammers borrower Lingard walked off the bench to a chorus of jeers as he replaced Wood, while Harry Toffolo also replaced Lodi, but with those two new boys still adjusting to life in the country. Forest’s two goal deficit quickly became three as West Ham converted for the third time in eight minutes.

With a dozen minutes to go, Rice gained possession in midfield before driving to the edge of the Forest box, where she fed the deflected ball to Benrahma and, with the Algerian rolling an attractive square ball back his way. , the Hammers captain curved a single hit. 18 yards for the hand to Navas’s glove, low angle to the right.

Now that their captain had tripled his team’s lead, Moyes had enough slack to retire Benrahma, the impressive Paquetá and man-of-the-match Ings as Antonio, Pablo Fornals and Manuel Lanzini all made late cameo appearances.

That switch paid an instant dividend as, seconds after his arrival, Antonio blasted past Toffolo at the far post to find himself met with a high, dangling cross from fellow substitute Fornals after Cresswell sent the overlapping Spaniard sprinting to the back line. .

Antonio’s seventh goal of the campaign cemented a vital and much-needed win for West Ham and, more importantly, Moyes, who now joined Sir Alex Ferguson and Arséne Wenger on 250 Premier League wins, will get much more sleep. quiet tonight with the Hammers in relative safety. from position 16.

West Ham United: Fabianski (Areola 70), Coufal (Cresswell 66), Johnson, Aguerd, Ogbonna, Souček, Rice, Paquetá (Lanzini 83), Bowen, Benrahma (Fornals 83), Ings (Antonio 83). Unused substitutes: Areola, Scamacca, Downes, Kehrer, Emerson.

Forest: Navas, Lodi, Williams, Worrall, Felipe, Shelvey (Ayew 66), Freuler, Colback, Gibbs-White, Wood (Lingard 77), Johnson (Surridge 86). Unused Substitutes: Hennessey, Mangala, Dennis, Danilo, Scarpa.

Referee: Jarred Gillett.


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