Hammers defeated at Leicester

Mark Noble

Leicester City 4-1 West Ham United
Premier League

West Ham United fell to a 4-1 defeat at Leicester City on Wednesday night.

Mark Noble’s penalty early in the second period had given the visitors hope after Leicester shot into a two goal lead before the break, but Ayoze Perez’s late double extinguished that to ensure the points stayed at the King Power Stadium.

Leicester were first to settle and Jamie Vardy had a sight of goal with just four minutes on the clock, receiving a pass from Harvey Barnes inside the area and taking a touch, before poking at Darren Randolph.

Ricardo Pereira slashed at shot when in space in the area at one end, while Robert Snodgrass had an effort deflected wide at the other, but Leicester were the more threatening side in the early stages and they got their reward in the 24th minute.

Hammers hands went up asking for an offside when Barnes knocked into the net from close range following Pereira’s cut-back, but he had timed his run perfectly to advance from behind the Foxes right back and evade the attentions of the visitors’ defence, vindicating the assistant referee’s decision to keep the flag down.

Leicester lost Nampalys Mendy and Vardy to injury before the break, but still they were able to inflict further pain on the Hammers through Pereira’s second in the final knockings of stoppage time.

Barnes turned provider, finding the space down the left flank to send a low cross through the box to his onrushing right-back, who drilled back across Randolph and into the far corner.

West Ham made a double change on the game’s resumption, introducing Michail Antonio and Pablo Fornals into the fray, and they gave themselves hope by quickly halving the deficit.

Just three second half minutes had been played when Kasper Schemichel only half punched a Manuel Lanzini free-kick clear. Sebastien Haller picked up the pieces and was bundled over by Pereira in the process. Referee David Coote pointed to the spot, with a VAR check confirming the penalty.

Noble did what Noble does, clipping the penalty down the middle as Schmeichel dived to his right, giving West Ham the perfect start to the second half.

Just past the hour, both Antonio and Lanzini were not far away from turning home an Aaron Cresswell corner which was allowed to drop inside the box.

West Ham were asking more questions of the Leicester defence now, although Ayoze Perez drew an important stop from Randolph with 20 minutes left to play with his first time.

Five minutes later the Irishman was called into action again, diving high to his left to touch James Maddison’s curler over the top.

Leicester’s authority was growing again and Ogbonna’s foul on Kelechi Iheanacho ten minutes from the end resulted in a penalty which Perez dispatched down the middle.

The Spaniard still had time to add another, threading a low shot into the bottom left hand corner of the Hammers’ net on 88 minutes.

Leicester City: Schmeichel, Pereira, Soyuncu, Evans, Chilwell, Mendy (Ndidi 34), Tielemans, Perez, Maddison, Barnes (Morgan 83), Vardy (Iheanacho 43)
Subs: Ward, Justin, Albrighton, Gray

Goals: Barnes 24, Pereira 45+5, Perez pen 81, Perez 88

Booked: Schmeichel

West Ham United: Randolph, Zabaleta, Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Masuaku (Antonio 46), Rice, Noble, Snodgrass (Fornals 46), Lanzini, Haller
Subs: Martin, Reid, Balbuena, Sanchez, Ajeti

Goal: Noble pen 50

Booked: Ogbonna