West Ham United made it five wins in a row as they thrashed ten-man Aston Villa in the Midlands on Sunday evening.
David Moyes’ side remained in fourth place but moved level on points with defending champions Manchester City, which only goes to show just how the Irons are playing right now.
It was yet another fine performance and another game in which Declan Rice looked class above the rest on the pitch, earning Sky Sports’ ‘Man of the Match’ award, though he admitted in his post-game interview that he was rather sloppy in the second half [18:36pm].
The England international was one of four different goalscorers, perhaps more surprisingly, one of those was not leading talisman Michail Antonio.
Academy gem Ben Johnson bagged his first-ever goal for the club, topping off an excellent run in the side, having kept six clean sheets from six starts before kickoff.
His impressive form has made it tough for Moyes to bring Vladimir Coufal straight back into the side following injury and understandably so, he was rewarded with a goal and yet another defensive masterclass to match.
Johnson’s 8.2 rating on SofaScore was only bettered by one other player in Rice, whilst he recorded a match-high eight tackles and also made four interceptions, two clearances and one block.
So not only did he open the scoring just seven minutes into the match with a beautiful strike on his weak foot, having cut inside from the right flank, but he also averted the danger of Leon Bailey and co, all of whom have been brought in to replace Jack Grealish.
Elsewhere, he was a hard man to dispose the ball of, winning eight of nine ground duels (88.8%), whilst he did not commit a single foul throughout the game. All the more impressive at just 21 years of age.
The Evening Standard were equally glowing of Johnson as they handed him an 8/10 in their post-match ratings column – the same as what Rice and Jarrod Bowen also received, which is a credit to the defender.
Dubbed “sensational” earlier in the week by club insider ExWHUemployee, the young Chadwell Heath gem fully justified his selection and on the night, he arguably stole the show at Villa Park.