West Ham United midfielder Pablo Fornals reflected on his side’s 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace on Saturday afternoon with mixed emotions.
At the end of a week in which his displays earned him a recall to the Spanish international squad, the No8’s second goal in two games put the Hammers ahead towards the end of the opening half.
The strike came at the end of a wonderful move involving Vladimír Coufal, Said Benrahma and Michail Antonio, and was reflective of a first period in which the home team were generally on top without having too many chances, save for one effort cleared off the line.
After a bright start to the second period for West Ham, however, Crystal Palace fought their way back into the game, levelling through Conor Gallagher.
Antonio then outmuscled Joachim Andersen to restore the home team’s lead, but that advantage only lasted two minutes as Gallagher levelled matters once more, leaving Fornals ambivalent about a draw from a game in which his side were twice in winning positions.
“In our home games, we always want three points,” he said.
“It’s a bit disappointing but I think, of course, that no game in the Premier League is easy, and Crystal Palace are going to [try to] cause difficulties [for us] like all the other teams in the league.
“It’s not easy to defend against a guy like [Christian] Benteke, but we put ourselves ahead twice and I think we’d done things well enough to keep the three points. Maybe we should have been a bit more aggressive in the second half.
“We did well enough to go ahead two times. I think the disappointment for everyone was to concede the equalising goal a minute after scoring to go 2-1 up, but even after that, we kept trying to win the game at all times, so we can be proud.
“We’ve started really well in the Premier League so we just have to keep going.”
Fornals was happy to find the back of the net once more, but would have preferred to have done so if it came hand-in-hand with three points.
Roared on by a capacity Claret and Blue Army at London Stadium for the second time in five days, however, the Spaniard feels his team
He said: “I think everyone gave a hundred per cent. I think in this moment of the season, where two days ago we learnt our opponents in the Europa League, we felt recharged.
“We are really happy about what’s happening this season and I think we were playing more with emotion than fuel right now.
“I’m really happy to help the team. Obviously when you score and you don’t take the three points, it’s not as good as normally, but I was really happy to score again.”