Home Sport David Moyes may get a chance to build something at West Ham...

David Moyes may get a chance to build something at West Ham after proving the club's owners wrong


David Moyes could be forgiven for the celebratory jig that followed Manuel Lanzini’s stunning equaliser at Tottenham.

Once the adrenalin had faded Moyes sounded a little sheepish as he discussed how he had got caught up in the moment, likening it to David Pleat’s unforgettable charge onto the Maine Road pitch after keeping Luton up in 1983.

But it was a strike worthy of celebrating in any way he felt like. As was the comeback it capped.

David Moyes could be forgiven for the celebratory jig after West Ham drew at Tottenham

David Moyes could be forgiven for the celebratory jig after West Ham drew at Tottenham

Manuel Lanzini scored a dramatic late equaliser to continue the Hammers' fine season form

Manuel Lanzini scored a dramatic late equaliser to continue the Hammers’ fine season form

It was a historic one, it turns out, with no club having previously clawed back a three-goal deficit so late in a game in Premier League history.

Sixteen minutes into the match however, the accompanying chatter on social media and beyond would have been predictable.

When Moyes was managing West Ham the club remotely while he recovered from his coronavirus diagnosis, he had helped guide them to two impressive wins against Wolves and Leicester without conceding from the comfort of his sofa.

As soon as he was back on the sidelines at Spurs thought West Ham were in danger of being blown away by Harry Kane, Heung-Min Son and company and quickly 3-0 down.

No club had previously clawed back a three-goal deficit so late in a game before West Ham

No club had previously clawed back a three-goal deficit so late in a game before West Ham

Yet, from nowhere, Moyes and West Ham produced the comeback to rival all comebacks, scoring three times after the 81st minute.

Not only did it earn them a point but also continued their impressive response to a depressing opening day setback against Newcastle.

Back then the immediate future looked bleak. There was negativity everywhere you looked and ahead lay a daunting run of league fixtures … Arsenal, Wolves, Leicester, Tottenham, Manchester City and Liverpool.

West Ham have suffered just one further defeat since then and their performance in that game, at Arsenal, was worthy of at least a point. A Moyes tactical tweak has been cited by some as a key reason behind the upturn.

Since the defeat to Newcastle, West Ham have switched to fielding three central defenders in the league.   

Moyes has made a tactical tweak and given Angelo Ogbonna extra support in defence

Moyes has made a tactical tweak and given Angelo Ogbonna extra support in defence

Angelo Ogbonna now has an extra body to support him at the back and the change has also helped get West Ham higher up the pitch as a team when they attack, especially via their wingbacks.

Meanwhile, Pablo Fornals and Jarrod Bowen have ensured Michail Antonio is not isolated up front.

West Ham finished the season well last year to see off relegation fears and, after the blip against Newcastle, have now hit another good patch of form.

That won’t surprise the senior players who felt the club were wrong to get rid of Moyes after he kept them up in 2018 before being overlooked for the job full-time in favour of Manuel Pellegrini.

Moyes has ensured Pablo Fornals (L) and Jarrod Bowen (R) support Michail Antonio up front

Moyes has ensured Pablo Fornals (L) and Jarrod Bowen (R) support Michail Antonio up front

Some also played a key role in Moyes’s return after Pellegrini’s reign turned sour.

When they were on the lookout for a successor to the Chilean the message to the hierarchy from influential dressing room figures was that the best manager you had, you previously got rid of.

They knew well-liked Moyes was capable of getting them organised…and the results would follow. He is also considered among some squad members to be the first manager in a long time who is determined to put his foot down and do things his way, blocking out the external influences.

His approach to discipline has also been well-received. While neither Pellegrini or Slaven Bilic before that were particularly bothered, Moyes is more of a stickler for standards.

Previously players could arrive a little late for a meeting or the start of training with few repercussions.

Manuel Pellegrini was not bothered in regards to his approach to discipline

There were also few repercussions for players under Slaven Bilic

He has also instilled discipline that neither Manuel Pellegrini or  Slaven Bilic could manage

Now they work for a manager who has been known to tell players they can go back inside if they are late for training without a legitimate reason and return later to go through their session.

After his ill-fated spell at Manchester United, Moyes was in danger of being typecast as a firefighter manager at best.

Especially when that was all he was deemed worthy of doing at West Ham first time around.

Having realised they got that call wrong, West Ham will not be so quick to dispense of him again.

This time he may be get a genuine chance to try and build something at the London Stadium while repairing some of the damage that has been done to his own reputation since he left Everton at the same time.

But Moyes appears to have proved Davids Gold and Sullivan got the call to sack him wrong

But Moyes appears to have proved Davids Gold and Sullivan got the call to sack him wrong

Some familiar with managing West Ham believe that won’t be easy.

Recruitment difficulties, as Moyes experienced this summer, for example, are one often-cited handicap to overcome for any manager in charge at West Ham.

West Ham fans have also seen more than enough to warn them against getting carried away. But, after their start to the campaign, there is some hope and a feel-good factor back at West Ham.

For as long as it lasts that is worth enjoying. Just like Lanzini’s spectacular last-minute strike at Spurs was for Moyes.

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