LONDON (REUTERS) - Joshua King scored a hat-trick and missed one of two penalties Bournemouth squandered as they edged a five-goal thriller 3-2 against West Ham United to move six points away from Premier League relegation danger on Saturday (March 11).
Bournemouth’s failure from the spot looked to have cost them two points when West Ham substitute Andre Ayew pulled the visitors level at 2-2 eight minutes from time but King capped an action-packed afternoon by lashing home a 90th-minute winner.
A timely first league win in 2017 put Bournemouth, who are 14th, on 30 points to 18th-placed Hull’s 24.
“It sums up the Premier League really – the ups and downs are extreme but I think we played well,” Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe said. “It’s a demanding league but I am proud of my players – they never give in and showed that again today.”
Bournemouth’s penalty woes began in the ninth minute.
After West Ham’s Sofiane Feghouli fouled Charlie Daniels in the area it was King who stepped up to take the penalty but his effort went wide of the post.
Forty eight seconds later the London side went ahead when Feghouli found Michail Antonio who turned smartly to shoot past Bournemouth goalkeeper Artur Boruc.
King levelled in the 31st minute with a clinical finish before Bournemouth were awarded another penalty when Marc Pugh went down in the area, only for Benik Afobe to have his kick saved by Darren Randolph.
Bournemouth started the second half as they did the first and King converted from close-range after Afobe’s knockdown, though there was an anxious wait while the referee consulted his assistants to determine if Afobe used his hand in the build-up.
West Ham sent on Ghana forward Ayew and his astute finish seemed to have earned a draw until King capped a tremendous display to fire home after Jack Wilshere’s effort was saved.
“In the end, definitely we deserved to get something out of the game but they played well and played with great aggression,” West Ham manager Slaven Bilic said.
“They missed two penalties too so we were lucky we were only down by one goal. We had situations to go two up but didn’t take them so we are disappointed.”