Bowen: Our luck will change soon

Jarrod Bowen rued a series of missed opportunities and David de Gea saves as West Ham United somehow left Old Trafford empty-handed on Sunday afternoon. 

It was another frustrating away day for those in Claret and Blue as Marcus Rashford scored the decisive goal for Manchester United in an intense Premier League fixture. 

From that moment seven minutes before half-time, West Ham dominated and had more than enough chances to fashion a response to the hosts’ goal, especially in the closing 20 minutes when they took the game to their opponents.

Only a sprawling De Gea denied Michail Antonio, Kurt Zouma and Declan Rice. Craig Dawson fired wide from the edge of the area. Saïd Benrahma tested the Manchester United stopper, while Bowen himself was also denied.

The England forward, who returned to action after missing the UEFA Europa Conference League win over Silkeborg IF on Thursday with an ankle knock, somehow saw his effort deflect off Harry Maguire and wide.

It was a moment that summed up how little luck has shone on the Hammers this season. The Irons, as they did at Stamford Bridge and Anfield, saw a performance count for nothing: they left Old Trafford proud, but ultimately empty-handed and bemused.

“I don’t know how we didn’t get something out of that game,” Bowen told West Ham TV. “That second-half performance was a massive positive for us.

“In the first half, we were a bit sloppy, but in the second half, you saw the levels we want to be at every game. There were lots of chances, the keeper making saves, even my chance at the end.  

“Sometimes when it is not falling for you, those are the fine margins that decide the game [don’t go your way]. We did everything but score - no one would disagree that we deserved something from this game.”

Bowen against Manchester United

Bowen though was adamant the Irons can take confidence from the performance.

Roared on by a 3,000-strong Claret & Blue Army, the Hammers did more than enough to test Manchester United. They went to Old Trafford and dominated for long periods only for a De Gea masterclass to make the difference in the end.

“We have got to look at the positives,” added Bowen. “There is losing the game and playing badly and there is losing the game and playing at a really high level which I think we did.

“We have gone to [difficult] places and we have put our authority on the game. We controlled the game – and in the second half against Manchester United, we did that again.

The Hammers will be gutted to fall to defeat in their final away Premier League match before the break but Bowen praised the support of the travelling Claret & Blue Army.

“You see the numbers the fans come in,” added Bowen. “They will be as disappointed as us not to get something from the game because I feel like we deserved it.

“But they know what has been built here – and the progress we are making, I don’t doubt that they are with us. Because they are with us. Fans included are a massive part of this Club going forwards.”

Moyes and De Gea

Of course, that support will be needed in the Irons’ final four games until the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

Before three home games – two in the Premier League against Crystal Palace and Leicester City and a Carabao Cup third round tie against Blackburn Rovers in between – David Moyes’ outfit head to Romania looking for a sixth straight win in the UEFA Europa Conference League against FCSB next Thursday.

Bowen explained that the level of performance is ‘good’ – and the results will soon follow in the Premier League as they have in European competition this term.

“We have got one more Europa Conference League game,” remarked Bowen, looking ahead to the Irons’ trip to FCSB. “We want to finish on a high and make it six out of six. It would be massive for the team.

“We have to go in with this [positive] mindset. Since the international break, we have been a much better team. Our luck will change soon. We want to take maximum points [from the remaining games] and go into the break on a high.”


Ticket Graphic