Pellegrini hails ‘special’ Yarmolenko

AFC Bournemouth 2-2 West Ham United – Reaction

MANUEL PELLEGRINI paid a glowing reference to Andriy Yarmolenko after the Ukrainian attacker provided a goalscoring virtuoso performance as the Hammers stretched their unbeaten Premier League sequence to six matches with an entertaining 2-2 draw with AFC Bournemouth at the Vitality Stadium.

“Andriy is a special player and I think we brought him here because he’s a very technical midfielder, but in his complete career, he always adds goals,” the Chilean enthused.

“He was very unlucky last season and his best moment that he had out due to injury his Achilles tendon, but he returned working very hard. I’m very happy with his performances as he’s not only scoring, he doesn’t lose any ball during the game and he always works very hard.”

Yarmolenko turned on the proverbial sixpence to hand the east Londoners an early advantage. However, the Cherries restored parity when Josh King’s strike – initially chalked off for off-side – was ruled legal following the intervention of VAR.

Callum Wilson’s crisp strike gave Bournemouth the lead immediately after the interval and the home side believed they had added a third when Nathan Ake fired home – this time VAR was called upon to confirm Dominic Solanke was in an off-side position and interfering with play in front of West ham’s stand-in stopper, Roberto.

That let-off proved vital as Aaron Cresswell hit his second goal in as many games – profiting from Yarmolenko and Felipe Anderson’s toil – to earn a share of the spoils.

Speaking about the VAR decisions, Pellegrini added: “I repeat what I said before about VAR. I think it’s a system that will help a lot. It will not resolve all the problems but the big mistakes they are doing. Nothing to complain about, that.”

Worryingly, Popular Hammers goalkeeper, Lukasz Fabianski, was forced off during the match, clutching his hip after dispatching a goal-kick shortly after the half-hour mark: “Lukasz felt a problem in his hip muscle, the problem in his hip. We’ll see tomorrow with the medical examination what it is.”

AFC Bournemouth: Ramsdale, Stacey (L. Cook 88’), S. Cook, Ake, Rico, Lerma, Billing (Francis 88’), H. Wilson (Danjuma 77’), King, Solanke, C. Wilson Subs not used: Boruc, Mepham, Surman, Ibe

West Ham United: Fabianski (Roberto 34’), Fredericks, Diop, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Rice, Noble (Wilshere 75’), Yarmolenko, Fornals (Lanzini 67’), Felipe Anderson, Haller Subs not used: Zabaleta, Balbuena, Snodgrass, Ajeti

Referee: Stuart Attwell


Brian Jeeves