Antonio header seals Hammers victory- Match Report

The title hopes of Tottenham Hotspur have been dented tonight, as they were subject to a 1-0 loss at the hands of West Ham United.

In a game of very few chances, the Hammers just managed to overcome their London counterparts. Having come from behind to beat Swansea City 2-1 at the weekend, Spurs went into Wednesday’s London derby just 3 points away from overtaking Leicester City as Premier League leaders, but a near-post header from Hammers new-boy Michail Antonio after 7 minutes sealed the points for the home side.

Spurs are favourites to win their first title in 55 years, and evidently the pressure of that has seemed to overcome Pochettino’s men, as they were dominated during the first half of the match. Though a total of just over 65% possession for the young Spurs side was recorded, they were unable to find the net, and are now still 3 points off Leicester at the top of the table. Harry Kane went closest for the away side in the second half, though his shot was blocked on the line. West Ham then hung on to record

The result sees West Ham United up to 6th in the league, 4 points ahead of 7th placed Stoke City, and 1 point of 4th  and 5th placed Manchester City and United.

Antonio reflects on match:

Speaking to Jonathan Pearce, Antonio stated:  “We wanted to get an early goal to settle the nerves and a derbv match is always the one you want to win.

“Switching to right wing back wasn’t a problem, I’m going to keep going up and down the pitch whether I am right back or right winger.

“Now at 25 I’m finally in the Premier League and after three months of not starting it is a relief to be here scoring.

“Tottenham are a team that come out and press you so we decided to do that to them and it worked.”

Pochettino Rues shaky start:

“I think that we didn’t start the game in a good way. We made some mistakes and the team didn’t feel free to play the way they play. West Ham is a strong, physical team which made it difficult and the conditions favoured them because the pitch wasn’t good.

“We need to be positive and it is important to be ready for Saturday. When you lose you can blame that the players are tired or whatever but the reality is that it was just a bad night for us to play the way we play tonight.

“The players are sad and it is true that we are very motivated and excited to stay towards the top of the table. I feel proud of them as the effort was fantastic.”

Bilic delighted with London derby win:

“We expected this atmosphere tonight, it is the game of the season for us. It is maybe our best performance, from the first minute we were on the front foot and dominant, tactically, technically and physically.

“Spurs concede the least goals and run the most so to out-play them is big and they should be happy it was just one goal they conceded.

“We changed the tactics with five at the back so we had wing backs chasing their runners and the system helped but how you play is more important. Our determination and togetherness was more important.

“We are not thinking about the top four. The gap might be small for those places but there is also a small gap between us and ninth place. We are going to continue to play like this and try to win every game.”

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