West Ham United played out a goalless draw against Manchester United in their penultimate game of the Premier League season. Jose Mourinho’s side had the better chances to find the scoresheet during the match but ultimately, they had to settle for a stalemate with Hammers goalkeeper Adrian making a couple of match-defining saves.
Three things we learned:
Jose Mourinho achieves his season ambition: Right from the turn of the year, Mourinho had highlighted the need for United to finish as the second-best side behind Manchester City. As such, the Portuguese set up his side in a more defensive manner with a 5-3-2 formation and this absorbed the little threat offered from the Hammers frontline. With the draw, United have clinched the runner-up spot for the campaign and Mourinho may now offer the weekend off to his first-team regulars with the FA Cup final in mind.
Anthony Martial’s future remains uncertain: Prior to the game, we had predicted that Martial could face a season-defining game at the London Stadium but the Frenchman never made the playing field. Martial had been particularly average during the 1-0 defeat to Brighton last week and Mourinho decided against utilising his services versus the Hammers. Martial has endured a difficult period since Mourinho’s reliance on Alexis Sanchez on the left wing and the Frenchman now needs to find a way of winning back the Portuguese’s confidence.
West Ham put in another resolute display against the top six: The Hammers may possess the second-worst defensive record in the division but they have done credibly against the top-six teams in their home patch. Since the turn of the year, the east London outfit have hosted four of the top six at the London Stadium and they have succumbed to only a solitary defeat against Manchester City. Besides this, they have secured goalless draws against Manchester United and Arsenal whilst bagging a rather surprise 1-0 triumph over Chelsea.