West Ham gets breakthrough win, goals for Scamacca and Bowen
West Ham United won a proper scrap with Wolves on Saturday at London’s Olympic Stadium, using a beautiful goal from Gianluca Scamacca and a clever finish from Jarrod Bowen to post a 2-0 win.
WATCH WEST HAM vs WOLVES FULL MATCH REPLAY STREAM
The Irons win their second match of the year to move clear of the bottom three with seven points.
Wolves now occupy 18th place on the Premier League table with six points, but will feel hope at the performance of Diego Costa off the bench for the final 32 minutes.
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What we learned from West Ham vs Wolves
Gianluca Scamacca is feeling comfortable: He was spotted visibly angry when a teammate’s sloppy first touch destroyed an early chance, and Scamacca is obviously not sheepish about his role in the team. He also clearly wanted to take a start over Michail Antonio to make his case to start every week. His thunderous goal from the edge of the 18 should’ve adequately made it.
Diego Costa flashes: The big, tempestuous veteran striker still knows where to be on the pitch and was just put off enough on a powerful header that went wide of the goal. Costa was a fine hold-up man, something Wolves have used to thrive when Raul Jimenez is at or near his best. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see Costa become the positive difference in 3-4 matches this season... maybe even next Saturday against old pals Chelsea?
Declan Rice: Speaking of the positive difference, Declan Rice is a force from endline-to-endline.
Jarrod Bowen reaction: ‘Just what we needed’
“It’s just what we needed. We haven’t had the start we wanted, and we had an international break to regroup our thoughts and go out on the front foot. We suffered without the ball but what this manager does is we’re a tough team to break down and we can counter. Massive three points for us, and we’ve got a lot of games now.”
Gianluca Scamacca reaction: First Premier League goal ‘amazing’
“It was an amazing feeling, for the fans. We needed to win. Today we worked very hard and made a good victory.”
Declan Rice, Lucas Paqueta, and Tomas Soucek going up against Joao Moutinho, Ruben Neves, and Matheus Cunha was a grind and we think all deserve ice baths. Not so much a midfield muddle as a melee, Neves and Paqueta were kept from their creative best in order to snap into tackles, though Rice stepped forward to seize the day on several occasions
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Stars of the Show
Wolves have a trip to Anderlecht for Thursday action in the Europa Conference League before Fulham visits London’s Olympic Stadium on Sunday, Oct. 9.
Wolves will reunite Diego Costa with Chelsea come 10am ET Saturday.
How to watch West Ham vs Wolves live, stream link and start time
Kick off: 12:30 pm ET, Saturday TV channel: NBC Online: Stream via NBCSports.com
Key storylines & star players
For both sides, the goal-scoring woes are a result of not only a failure to convert scoring chances, but also their inability to create them. West Ham and Wolves both rank in the bottom five of the Premier League in expected goals with identical paltry 0.9 xG averages (per 90 minutes). No other side in the Premier League is anywhere close to underperforming their expected numbers by more than 50 percent.
Goals have come much more easily for West Ham in the Europa Conference League, where they have scored three goals in all four games thus far — six in two games against Danish side Viborg, and three apiece against Romanian runners-up FCSB and another Danish side in Silkeborg.
Wolves made the effort to be a better attacking side this season, as they spent $18 million on Sasa Kalajdzic, but the Austrian international striker tore his ACL on his debut for the club. Raul Jimenez, meanwhile, has played just 211 minutes in three Premier League appearances (none since Aug. 31) and has just one goal, in the League Cup. The Mexican international is now in a race against time to be healthy and fit for the 2022 World Cup eight weeks from now.
West Ham team news, injuries, lineup options
OUT: Nayef Aguerd (ankle), Benjamin Johnson (hamstring)
Wolves team news, injuries, lineup options
OUT: Raul Jimenez (groin), Sasa Kalajdzic (torn ACL), Nathan Collins (suspension), Chiquinho (knee)