After a draining FA Cup thriller against Everton earlier in the week, West Ham’s players were clearly showing signs of fatigue in their match against Hull at Upton Park. Tiredness may have been in evidence but confidence around the club is high after their win in the week and a successful first half of the season. However, you have to feel for Stewart Downing. He’s had nothing short of a renaissance this season, but missing the penalty shot that could have clinched the win against Everton, must have been tough to take.
Even the most seasoned penalty-takers occasionally blunder. It happens. But, how a player responds shows what they’re made of. So it speaks volumes that in his following game, his name is on the score sheet, along with Andy Carroll and Morgan Amalfitano. Those tree goals and three points leave West Ham only a point off fifth spot, but sink the Tigers into relegation trouble.