Lukasz Fabianski says West Ham United cannot afford to allow Saturday’s defeat at AFC Bournemouth to dent the confidence they have built up in recent weeks.
The Hammers travelled to the Vitality Stadium with a chance to go seventh in the Premier League table with a victory, having won six of their previous nine top-flight fixtures, including a 1-0 home victory over Arsenal last time out, while the Cherries went into the game on a run of nine defeats in 12.
However, a below-par performance from the Irons, who failed to create sufficient chances in the final third, saw Eddie Howe’s side come out on top courtesy of second-half goals from Callum Wilson and Joshua King.
The main thing is to make smart conclusions and work out what we did wrong and what we did well and focus on the things we have to improve
“It’s a completely different emotion from last week,” said Fabianski, who made fine saves from Steve Cook and Wilson to prevent Bournemouth winning by a wider margin. “We’re really disappointed with the result and with the performance, as it could have been a lot better from our point of view.
“I think we didn’t really manage to create that many chances to put them under a bit more pressure and we ended up losing 2-0, which I think was a fair result.
“We knew what to expect from Bournemouth because they are a team who always play with high intensity, especially at home, where they try to put you under a lot of pressure. So we expected them to start quite strongly, but after about 15 minutes we started to get a grip on the game and move the ball better and found spaces.”
Frustratingly, West Ham conceded the opening goal at the end of their best spell of the game immediately after half-time and moments after Andy Carroll had missed a golden opportunity to put the visitors in front.
Bournemouth countered with customary speed and numbers and scored when Issa Diop diverted Ryan Fraser’s cross into the path of Wilson, who lashed an unstoppable right-foot shot into the top left-hand corner, giving Fabianski no chance.
“It was a game that when the first team scores, they usually win it and that’s what happened,” the goalkeeper reflected. “It was a quality strike and they caught us a bit on the break. We have to give them credit because they finished the chances that they had.
“In certain situations, although I wouldn’t call it bad luck, you work for something and Bournemouth worked their luck. It was a difficult ball for him to strike and the way he put it away was brilliant.
“After they scored, we tried to get back in it and create more chances. We did our best physically but it didn’t happen for us.”
West Ham now have a week to prepare for an Emirates FA Cup fourth-round trip to AFC Wimbledon, followed quickly by Premier League meetings with Wolverhampton Wanderers and Liverpool.
And Fabianski says the squad cannot afford to let Saturday’s defeat affect their attitude towards three testing and important matches.
“That’s what the Premier League is all about – you have to stay consistent, especially mentally, because it’s a very demanding league,” he concluded. “You can’t dwell on things mentally.
“The main thing is to make smart conclusions and work out what we did wrong and what we did well and focus on the things we have to improve.
“There are still lots of games to play and we have to push and get as much as we can from the rest of the season.”