A late equaliser meant heartbreak for West Ham on Saturday night as they saw a much-needed three points become one. Having gone down to 10 men in the first half, the Hammers defended valiantly against Leicester City and will feel they deserved the victory for their committed display.
Ultimately, however, a wicked deflection off of Fabian Balbuena redirected a Wilfred Ndidi strike into the back of the net and ensured that the spoils were shared at the King Power Stadium. The deflection off of Balbuena was a particularly cruel twist of fate, as the centre-back had otherwise put in a wonderful performance.
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The 27-year-old summer signing put Manuel Pellegrini’s side ahead from close range and was a rock at the back as the outnumbered Irons clung on for so long to their slender advantage.
Despite his unwitting hand in the Foxes’ goal, many West Ham fans were highly appreciative of the Paraguayan’s efforts. After the match, lots of Hammers supporters took to Twitter to sing Balbuena’s praises…
Balbuena and Diop were outstanding today
— D Scott (@ScottyD_WHUFC) 27 October 2018
Diop was good today Balbuena was better though in my opinion !!
— Gary Benson (@gbenson77) 27 October 2018
Balbuena always goes under the radar for so many fans, he’s been outstanding most games this season
— ML (@Michail_Lanzini) 27 October 2018
First time in years that I can say I’m happy with our CB pairing , balbuena an absolute steal at just 3.5 mill and for me Diop is a beast
— BillyB (@BillyBrannan1) 27 October 2018
Little steps but positive ones. Thought Balbuena and Diop immense, great partnership developing. With Fabianski behind and Rice in front that’s a decent half spine. Things will get better with time…..like to beat Burnley next
— Lawrie Sullivan (@LozzerOfHampton) 27 October 2018
Balbuena was the best of the bunch. https://t.co/EvIrN3pfha
— West Ham Central (@WestHam_Central) 27 October 2018