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Men’s Football Moyes hits out at busy schedule after defeat to Leeds

West Ham 2-3 Leeds United
by Paul Donovan
at the London Stadium

LEEDS outran and outfought West Ham to come out worthy winners of an absorbing end to end contest at the London Stadium on Sunday. 

The visitors were clearly the more energised team, reflecting the full week of rest they had, compared to West Ham who had beaten Norwich midweek. 

West Ham manager David Moyes felt this hugely contributed to the result.

“Playing in midweek was a huge factor. People making these decisions cannot understand what recovery means,” said an aggrieved Moyes.

“We’ve got Covid, injuries and a player at the Africa Nations competition. Today it was tough to get back in.” 

West Ham were chasing for much of the game, as the energised visitors set the pace. 

The game was only nine minutes old when Raphinha beat Aaron Cresswell down the left, his shot was pushed out by keeper Lukasz Fabianski but only as far as Adam Forshaw who teed it up for Jack Harrison to rifle home. 

West Ham pushed on in search of an equaliser, with Craig Dawson heading narrowly wide from a Cresswell corner. 

Another Cresswell corner, though, saw Jarrod Bowen come round the back to head home. 

However, Leeds were not to be denied, grabbing the lead back before half time, Luke Ayling heading a corner down for Harrison to tap home.  

Leeds should have extended their lead before half time when Raphinha found Daniel James on his own, with only Fabianski to beat. Unfortunately, for the visitors, James tamely put the ball straight into the keeper’s hands. 

West Ham hit back after half time, with Michail Antonio laying off the ball, which was picked up by Pablo Fornals, who cut into the penalty area before driving his shot wide of the Leeds keeper Illan Meslier. 

Leeds though didn’t take long to get back in front, West Ham losing the ball in midfield, Raphinha putting Harrison in to dink the ball over Fabianksi to complete a well deserved hat-trick. 

Leeds had two more chances with Raphinha seeing his free kick cannon back off the upright and Mateusz Klich having an effort ruled out for offside. 

West Ham though should have squared the game in the last minute, when Bowen contrived to chest over rather than head home an excellent cross from Antonio. 

Moyes could not understand why Bowen chose chest over head.  

“But we shouldn’t have been in that position in the first place,” said Moyes. 

It would also have been harsh on Leeds. 

Leeds manager Marcelo Bielsa was full of praise for his side.

“The determination in the search for the victory was very visible,” said Bielsa, who suggested spectators need to show a little more tolerance toward players.”  

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