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West Ham thumps Bournemouth with Fornals ‘scorpion’ exclamation point

West Ham delivered a lopsided win over Bournemouth to catapult themselves six points clear of the relegation zone, while the Cherries remain five points to the good despite the defeat.

West Ham United made quick work of Bournemouth with a three-goal first half en route to a 4-0 win over the Cherries at the Vitality Stadium on Sunday.

Pablo Fornals’ scorpion-like goal was the only marker of the second half after Michail Antonio, Lucas Paqueta, and Declan Rice scored and West Ham showed no rust from Thursday’s Europa Conference League triumph over Gent.


The victory pulls David Moyes’ men six points clear of the bottom three with a match-in-hand on all seven clubs underneath the 13th-place Irons.

That includes Bournemouth, who has 33 points and sits 15th. The wake-up call will remind the Cherries, winners of three-in-four heading into the match, that their Premier League status is not assured for the 2023-24 season.

[ MORE: How to watch Premier League in USA ]

West Ham’s inevitable safety run arrives

We’ve been saying it all season, and it’s probably why David Moyes is still in a job: West Ham’s squad has been super unlucky and is way-too-talented to be in a relegation fight.

West Ham had been operating almost 11 goals below their expected goals total and more than one-third of those will accompany them home from the South Coast on Sunday.

The midfield was spectacular and the power and calm displayed inside the Bournemouth box will be something that Moyes recognizes from years of his best work.

It’ll take a lot for West Ham to sink back into the bottom three now, and the club can shift more of its focus to Conference League silverware.

Bournemouth vs West Ham player ratings: Stars of the Show

Declan Rice

Lucas Paqueta

Tomas Soucek

West Ham’s midfield ran this game from Moment No. 1, putting a damper on rising Bournemouth’s happy ground.

West Ham vs Bournemouth player ratings

What’s next?

West Ham hosts Liverpool on Wednesday before a Saturday trip to Crystal Palace.

Bournemouth goes to Southampton on Thursday before a Sunday visit from Leeds, two huge chances to affect teams below them.

Follow @NicholasMendola

Michail Antonio goal video: Set piece delight in first five minutes

Lucas Paqueta goal video: Rising high to meet Coufal cross

Declan Rice goal video: Red-hot midfielder increases the lead

Pablo Fornals goal video: Holy flying back heel!

How to watch Bournemouth vs West Ham live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 9 am ET, SundayOnline: Stream via Peacock Premium

Key storylines & star players

For Bournemouth, a win would take them eight points clear of danger and just about confirm season no. 1 in the PL, and the Cherries have done it in rather impressive fashion of late. Signature wins over top-half sides Liverpool, Fulham and Tottenham (all in Bournemouth’s last six games - 4W-0D-2L) have shown marked improvement over the side that lost three straight games by a combined margin of 16-0 back in August (Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool).

On the one hand, West Ham are just 270 minutes from winning a European trophy for the first time since 1965 (58 years). On the other hand, their progression through the European knockout rounds (with 11 wins and one draw, including the group stage and qualification) has complicated domestic matters to some degree, but the long winless run that stretched from October to January (thanks to the World Cup) has finally subsided. David Moyes’ side has lost just once in the PL (2W-2D-1L) since beginning play in the Conference knockout rounds.

Bournemouth team news, injuries, lineup options

OUT: Junior Stanislas (undisclosed), Ryan Fredericks (calf) | QUESTIONABLE: Matias Viña (back), Hamed Traore (ankle)

West Ham team news, injuries, lineup options

OUT: Gianluca Scamacca (knee) | QUESTIONABLE: Angelo Ogbonna (lower back)

Follow @AndyEdMLS