Łukasz Fabiański reflected on a frustrating afternoon for West Ham United after Nottingham Forest sent them to defeat on Sunday thanks to Taiwo Awoniyi’s first half goal.
That in itself does not tell the story of a frantic game at the City Ground, which saw the Hammers come storming back in the second half and do everything but find the equalising goal.
Pablo Fornals and Saïd Benrahma both beat Dean Henderson with long-range shots, only to see the ball bounce back to safety off the underside of the crossbar, while Declan Rice had a penalty saved by the Forest keeper.
Fabiański, who made saves to deny Awoniyi and Neco Williams in the opening period, did not have nearly as much to do after the restart, but could only watch on as Forest held on to claim the points.
“We’re very frustrated,” the No1 admitted, “We knew before the game that it would be tough and there would be a lot of energy in the crowd, because obviously it was the first home game for them in the Premier League for a while.
“So we were expecting a big battle and that’s how it was from the first minute. I would say they were better than us in the first half, but once the second half started we had the much better chances.
“We hit the bar twice, we had a penalty saved by their keeper, so we’re very disappointed that we didn’t take anything from the game.”
The match-winning goal came in a incident-packed end to the first half, which saw Benrahma have a goal chalked off after a pitchside VAR review by referee Robert Jones, before Awoniyi scrambled home the game’s solitary goal.
Fabiański was disappointed with the goal that was conceded and said it was on those margins that games are settled at the highest level.
“Every goal that you concede is very frustrating,” he continued. “We didn’t really cover the second part of the box where Jesse was. We still tried to defend it, but it looked scrappy in the end.
“Like I said you’re always disappointed when you concede a goal, so that wasn’t a nice way to finish the first half.
“We have the experience to know that there are no easy games in the Premier League.
“You get punished for the little things and that’s maybe what happened today, with us not taking our chances and conceding in a way a soft goal.
“You have to earn the right to play football in the Premier League, and Forest took their chance [and that’s why] they came away with the win.”