West Ham United manager Manuel Pellegrini has admitted that he enjoyed the partnership between Javier Hernandez and Marko Arnautovic in his side's 3-0 win at Newcastle United, but took time to mull over exactly what team to pick. Felipe Anderson capped an excellent display with a coolly finished third deep into stoppage time.
Hernandez's 11th-minute opener came just as many Newcastle fans were taking their seats, due to a protest against the 11-year reign of owner Mike Ashley. Kenedy made little effort to prevent Robert Snodgrass crossing from the right and the winger's inswinging delivery was converted by an unmarked Hernandez.
What does it mean? A run of matches against Cardiff City, Crystal Palace, Fulham, Watford, Southampton and Burnley, in addition to this contest, appears to give Pellegrini's team a real opportunity to climb the table. However, outside of Arnautovic and Anderson, West Ham do not have many viable scoring options.
West Ham have been left sweating over the fitness of defensive duo Aaron Creswell and Fabian Balbuena ahead of the visit of Cardiff.
"Unfortunately, we lost today but we have another game on Wednesday, and that's really good, because it helps us to get this out of our system".
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The Mexico global struck either side of halftime, with Felipe Anderson adding a third in injury time to end Newcastle's three-game winning streak in comprehensive fashion on an afternoon when West Ham might have won by a bigger margin.
Through the first 13 games of the Premier League season, Newcastle and West Ham are level on points with 12.
- West Ham's Felipe Anderson has scored four goals in his last four Premier League games having netted just one in his opening 10 appearances in the competition for the Hammers.
Anderson's pace down the left caused Newcastle all kinds of problems, but it was Mexico global Hernandez who put them to the sword.