Lingard lifts West Ham into fourth after Wolves win
April 06 2021 11:50 PM
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West Ham United’s Jesse Lingard (left) runs past Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Leander Dendoncker before
West Ham United’s Jesse Lingard (left) runs past Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Leander Dendoncker before scoring during the English Premier League match at the Molineux stadium in Wolverhampton, central England. (AFP)

AFP/ London

Jesse Lingard inspired West Ham to a thrilling 3-2 win at Wolves to move fourth in the Premier League on Monday, as Everton’s hopes of a top-four finish were dented in a 1-1 draw against Crystal Palace.
Lingard’s stunning form since joining the Hammers on loan from Manchester United in January saw him earn a recall by England manager Gareth Southgate last month. The midfielder further bolstered his case for inclusion in Southgate’s squad for Euro 2020 as he ran from inside his own half to slot home his sixth goal in eight West Ham appearances after just six minutes. Lingard then turned creator for his side’s other two goals as the visitors surged into a 3-0 lead inside 38 minutes.
His cute flick when penned in at the corner flag teed up Arthur Masuaku to cross for Pablo Fornals to double the Hammers’ lead. Lingard then surged beyond four weak Wolves challenges to free Jarrod Bowen, who fired in at Rui Patricio’s near post.
“He’s playing terrifically well,” said West Ham boss David Moyes. “Tonight he looked like a real top player.”
West Ham move a point ahead of Chelsea in a tight battle for a place in the Champions League next season. Tottenham and Liverpool are just three points behind Moyes’s men with eight games to play. “We have to take it on. I’m hearing people talking about West Ham with a chance of playing in the Champions League,” added Moyes. “Nobody would have envisaged that last season. All those big teams up there going for fourth, we are going to try to compete with them all the way to the end.”
West Ham let a three-goal lead slip in their last outing as Arsenal battled back to draw 3-3 at the London Stadium two weeks ago and they nearly made the same mistake. Leander Dendoncker kickstarted the Wolves fightback with a towering header from Adama Traore’s cross just before half-time.
Substitute Fabio Silva then found the far corner 22 minutes from time to set up a grandstand finish. This time the Hammers held out, but their top-four challenge could be impacted by a couple of significant injuries.
Declan Rice missed his first Premier League game of the season with a knee injury that is expected to keep the England midfielder out for a month and Michail Antonio limped off in the first-half with a hamstring problem.
Everton missed the chance to also move within three points of four, with a game in hand to come, as Michy Batshuayi’s 86th minute equaliser salvaged a point for the Eagles at Goodison Park. The Toffees were made to rue a string of missed chances either side of James Rodriguez’s opener.
“The reason was we were not able to kill the game when we had the opportunity,” said Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti. “When you deserve to win, you have to win. We have to be more focused to avoid these kinds of situations.”
Rodriguez broke the deadlock 11 minutes into the second-half when he fired home Seamus Coleman’s cut-back for his 100th goal in European football. Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Richarlison were denied by Vicente Guaita with the chance to seal the points.
And that proved costly as Everton ultimately dropped points for the seventh time in eight home games.
Batshuayi had only been on the pitch two minutes when he latched onto Jeffrey Schlupp’s through ball to fire low beyond Robin Olsen. Palace remain in 12th, but look safe for another season in the top flight as they edge 11 points clear of the relegation zone.

West Ham agree permanent
deal for on-loan Dawson
Meanwhile, West Ham have agreed to sign on-loan defender Craig Dawson from Watford in a permanent deal at the end of this season. Dawson joined David Moyes’ side from the Championship club in October and has played a key role in their unexpected surge into fourth place in the Premier League.
He has scored three goals in 15 Premier League appearances as West Ham chase qualification for next season’s Champions League. The 30-year-old centre-back will now remain at London Stadium until at least 2023.
“Coming to West Ham has been a great move for myself, and it is a privilege to play for a club with such rooted traditions,” Dawson said. “The squad has a real togetherness, team spirit and great quality. I’m excited for what my future at the club may hold and the potential for what we as a club can go on to achieve.”
Dawson, who played for Rochdale, West Bromwich Albion and Bolton earlier in his career, had to wait until late December for his Hammers debut but has since been ever-present in the top flight.
“Craig’s performances, attitude and the impact he’s had demonstrate why he deserves a permanent deal,” Moyes said.
“He had to be patient but he’s come in and grabbed his opportunity with both hands. We are always looking to improve the squad and Craig joining us permanently certainly does that.”



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