MX23RW : Tuesday, April 7 10:22:54| >> :600:142610:142610:
Jan 25, 2020 at 3pm UK at London Stadium
Attendance: 58,911
West HamWest Ham United
West BromWest Bromwich Albion
FT(HT: 0-1)
Townsend (9')
Ajayi (72')

Result: Slaven Bilic makes winning return to West Ham as West Brom progress

Result: Slaven Bilic makes winning return to West Ham as West Brom progress
© Reuters
The match saw Baggies boss Slaven Bilic return to his former club.

Slaven Bilic dumped his former club out of the FA Cup as West Brom sank woeful West Ham 1-0 at the London Stadium.

Bilic, sacked by the Hammers in 2017, came back to haunt them, with his Championship pace-setters running out deserved winners thanks to Conor Townsend's early strike.

Gallingly for West Ham, this was pretty much their strongest available line-up while Bilic made eight changes to his, with the Croatian's priority lying with the promotion race.

Not only that, but Albion also played the final 18 minutes with 10 men after Semi Ajayi was sent off for a second booking.

Among those drafted in by Bilic were experienced campaigners Charlie Austin, Chris Brunt and Gareth Barry, an FA Cup winner nine years ago with Manchester City.

Barry and Brunt may have a combined age of 73 but they were more mobile than anyone in the West Ham's plodding midfield.

The rest of the Baggies side had pace, tempo, intensity and a clear game plan, all of which were lacking from the Premier League side.

Their goal arrived in the ninth minute after a carefree 40-yard run from Filip Krovinovic led to a mix-up between Issa Diop and Carlos Sanchez and saw the ball fall at the feet of Townsend.

West Brom boss Slaven Bilic enjoyed his return to the London Stadium
West Brom boss Slaven Bilic enjoyed his return to the London Stadium (Bradley Collyer/PA)

The full-back still had plenty to do on the edge of the box, but he took a touch before pinging his shot across Darren Randolph into the far corner for his first Albion goal.

They should have had more during an embarrassingly one-sided first half, but Krovinovic glanced a header narrowly wide before Austin planted a free header the wrong side of the post.

Hammers boss David Moyes made a triple substitution at half-time, with the calamitous Sanchez making way for captain Mark Noble, while so bad was defender Fabian Balbuena that the injured Angelo Ogbonna went on in his place.

Michail Antonio was also summoned to add some zip to the attack, but when his first break up field fashioned a chance for Albian Ajeti, the Swiss striker's touch let him down.

Sebastien Haller, West Ham's £45million record signing who looks like he would rather be anywhere else right now, shanked his one attempt on goal off target while Manuel Lanzini fired wide and Pablo Zabaleta headed over.

Noble should have equalised in stoppage time but blazed over from 12 yards before burying his head in his hands.

A draw would have flattered the Hammers, though, and they ultimately bowed out with a whimper and were roundly booed off at full-time.

They now have only a relegation battle to look forward to, and if these two sides swap divisions in May, Bilic really will have had the last laugh.

Share this article now:
West Ham manager David Moyes on January 10, 2020
Read Next:
David Moyes expecting good reception for Slaven Bilic on West Ham return
Latest Sports Video
Did you know...?
Sports Mole Logo
Enter your email address to subscribe to Sports Mole's free match previews newsletter! Updates are sent twice a week.

rhs 2.0
Live scores banner
1Leeds UnitedLeeds37218856302671
2West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom371913564372770
5Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest371612948381060
6Preston North EndPreston37168135045556
7Bristol City371510125153-255
9Cardiff CityCardiff37131595250254
10Blackburn RoversBlackburn371411125245753
11Swansea CitySwansea371314104645153
12Derby CountyDerby371312124949051
13Queens Park RangersQPR37148155862-450
15Sheffield WednesdaySheff Weds37139154649-348
16Birmingham CityBirmingham371211144857-947
17Stoke CityStoke37126194955-642
18Huddersfield TownHuddersfield37119174558-1342
20Wigan AthleticWigan371011163850-1241
21Hull City37118184963-1441
22Charlton AthleticCharlton37109184454-1039
23Luton TownLuton37105224371-2835

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!