Ahead of last night's FA Cup game few people have Hammers a chance against Man U at Old Trafford, ultimately the home side prevailed with an immensely flattering score line, but things could have been SO different had the normally immaculate Nayef Aguerd not had an absolute stinker of a night AND Big Mikey Antonio hadn't fluffed his lines on at least TWO separate occasions!
Aguerd's display was a one off that happens to even the top players in rare games, he will be fine for the next game away to 'Bogey' team Brighton & Hove Albion. However, Mikey Antonio's performance wasn't a blip, more like a continuation of a poor run of form stretching back the entire season!
Antonio busts a gut for the club and will always give it his all, but as he will be the first to admit, a striker he is NOT! That was plain to see last night when he could have and should have scored when put clean through on goal with only De Gea to beat, but worse was when he was again bearing down on goal with Said Benrahma running into space square of him and yet he elected to go it alone with a shot from an impossible angle whereas Benrahma would have had a tap in from close range that he would NOT have missed.
For once David Moyes cannot be blamed for the 'Antonio' situation because new signing Danny Ings was cup tied, oh and how he was missed! It is not beyond comprehension to envisage Hammers could have left Manchester as victors if only Ings had been playing, he would have had an absolute field day against the complacent home team.
Hammers could have been at least two up, possibly three before the break, such were the proliferation of chances on offer as Hammers completely dominated the home team. Alas it was not to be, Mikey huffed and puffed until he was replaced by a clearly unfit Bowen and the team played deeper and deeper until it was too late.
Gianlica Scamacca was brought on for the remaining five minutes which saw Hammers concede two goals which gave the final score such a false reading. The Premier fixtures on the same evening proved to be rather good and hopefully if the team can put in a shift like they did last night (errors excluded) there is every chance the club can claw itself away from the bottom of the table and begin to think about next week's 'Con Cup' game in Cyprus. - Ed