HOW long it lasts remains to be seen. Yet at a sold out London Stadium last night, everyone at West Ham appeared to be on the same side.
All they need to do now is to start winning games and they could even avoid the relegation so many of their supporters are expecting. For David Moyes, a point with Leicester was a start.
He could probably do without a trip to his former club Everton on Wednesday followed by games with Manchester City, Arsenal and Chelsea.
But to avoid defeat to the former champions, something which looked likely after only the eighth minute, at least gives Moyes something to work on following his torrid introduction to life in the Premier League’s east end soap opera.
Moyes seemed surprised by the disconnect between the club’s supporters, which was so obvious in his first match.
West Ham’s fans certainly did not help their team in the 2-0 loss at Watford, singing abuse aimed at chief Karren Brady, while targeting the two co-owners and making fun of some of the team.
There was also the small but incredibly stupid section of West Ham’s support who were yesterday begged by Essex police to stop ringing 999 after Hammers defeats.
But at a ground many still do not call home – and some never will – the atmosphere yesterday was excellent.
Even when they trailed, the fans got behind the team. Cheikhou Kouyate levelled with a deflected header on the stroke of half-time and in the second half, the atmosphere was as good as anything you will experience at a Premier League ground.
If West Ham are to beat the drop – and they obviously have a chance – the positivity must continue.
And as we have already seen since West Ham left Upton Park, avoiding negativity at this ground is no easy thing.
A point was probably the fair result and Leicester – who have made a steady start under Claude Puel – will not be too unhappy.
Yet Puel will have been expecting three points from the start as West Ham continued where they left off in the defeat at Vicarage Road as they looked a complete shambles.
It started from a Christian Fuchs throw and the ball fell to Wilfried Ndidi who released Jamie Vardy down the left.
Winston Reid, maybe still recovering from facing Richarlison of Watford five days earlier, looked absolutely terrified of the England striker.
He backed off and Vardy was able to deliver a cross which would have been cleared by Angelo Ogbonna had he not got his feet in a tangle.
Comically, he missed the ball entirely and Albrighton got in front of Aaron Cresswell and stuck out a leg to steer the ball past a helpless Joe Hart.
While everyone spoke about Vardy, Riyad Mahrez and N’Golo Kante in Leicester’s title triumph two seasons ago, Albrighton was one of the unsung heroes – and remains a vitally-important player at this club.
Albrighton then shouted for a penalty after he was hit by a clumsy challenge from Arthur Masuaku but referee Martin Atkinson was having none of it.
For a period, Leicester looked like that team under Claudio Ranieri, delivered the Premier League’s greatest ever story. They were playing with confidence andf breaking with speed.
Demarai Gray, feasting on all the space being allowed, released Vardy who once again got the better of Winston Reid but the much-criticised Marko Arnautovic, playing with a heavily-bandaged thumb, showed some guts and won a challenge which was 60-40 against.
Kasper Schmeichel did well to push away a flick from Ogbonna following Manuel Lanzini’s free-kick.
And just when you thought Schmeichel was looking a banker for a clean sheet with West Ham failing to take their chances, the Danish keeper found himself picking the ball out of the net.
Kouyate got his head to Lanzini’s corner and the ball came off Danny Simpson’s shoulder and into the net. It was hardly pretty, not that anyone inside the stadium cared and Moyes applauded his team off at the break.
That goal clearly gave the team some much needed belief and they were the better team for a large chunk of the second half.
Masuaku shot through the legs of Wes Morgan but Schmeichel gathered. Andre Ayew seemed to dive to get a penalty with Harry Maguire unimpressed.
For Moyes, it has not been the ideal start but it could have been a while lot worse. The big question is whether he enjoys his return to Goodison Park in midweek.INTERACTIVE STATS – CLICK on the categories to find out how the teams fared
INTERACTIVE LINE-UPS– CLICK on a player’s number below to see their stats
FACTS, STATS, GOALS AND LOLS
- West Ham haven’t won in their last six Premier League meetings with Leicester
- Marc Albrighton has been involved in five goals in six Premier League starts against West Ham
- No side has conceded more Premier League goals from corners this season than Leicester (6)
- West Ham were definitely trying to make the most of Andy Carroll in attack, hitting 26 crosses compared to Leicester’s nine
- This was reinforced by the Foxes making 26 clearances compared with West Ham’s four
WHAT THEY SAID
Andy Carroll: “It was a tough game, we had to work hard, there was a lot of running about. We got a point, it’s a good start for us.”
Joe Hart: The manager’s asked for quality but first he wants us to perform and fight.
“We’ve got to say thanks to the fans, they chose to stick with us. When we have the support, it meant the world to the players.”
DREAM TEAM RATINGS
West Ham: Hart 6, Zabaleta 6, Reid 6, Ogbonna 6, Cresswell 6, Kouyate 8, Obiang 6, Arnautovic 6 (Ayew 6), Lanzini 7, Masuaku 7 (Sakho 6), Carroll 6Subs not used: Adrian, Noble, Fernandes, Quina, RiceGoal: Kouyate 45’Booked: AyewLeicester: Schmeichel 7, Simpson 6, Morgan 6, Maguire 6, Fuchs 7, Albrighton 7, Ndidi 7, Iborra 6, Gray 6 (Slimani 5), Mahrez 6 (Chilwell 6), Vardy 6Subs not used: Iheanacho, King, Hamer, Dragovic, OkazakiGoal: Albrighton 8’Booked: GraySTAR MAN: Cheick Kouyate
- West Ham: Premier League fixtures, injury latest for season restart
- Premier League stops matches until April 4 as all professional football in England is halted for three weeks after Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta and Chelsea's Callum Hudson-Odoi catch coronavirus
- The devil and José Mourinho
- Chaotic race for university places amid mass confusion over appeals process: Scramble to challenge thousands of A-level grades before clearing deadline after 40% of exams are downgraded from recommended marks
- Despair and delight of UK's Covid exam generation: From the young carer robbed of a university place to twins who scored identical A*s and are now off to Oxford
- The Queen thanks heroes who 'fought so valiantly' to bring WWII to an end on VJ Day 75th anniversary of as Boris Johnson, Charles and Camilla attend remembrance service at the National Memorial Arboretum
West Ham 1 Leicester 1: David Moyes’ men secure vital draw as Cheikhou Kouyate’s equaliser cancels out Marc Albrighton’s opener have 1154 words, post on www.thesun.co.uk at November 24, 2017. This is cached page on Talk Vietnam. If you want remove this page, please contact us.