Jarrod Bowen’s goal extended West Ham’s winning run to three Premier League gamesJarrod Bowen continued his fine start to the season to help West Ham to a victory at Luton that puts them top of the Premier League.
After dominating possession throughout the first half, West Ham found the breakthrough shortly before half-time when Lucas Paqueta’s tantalising cross was headed in by Bowen, although Luton goalkeeper Thomas Kaminski may feel he should have done better.
Luton, despite being without the ball for long periods, posed a threat on the counter and carved out eight chances in the opening half of the first Premier League game at Kenilworth Road in their history.
However, they failed to register an effort on target as Ross Barkley fired wide on two occasions and Carlton Morris – who has scored Luton’s only goal in the Premier League this season – headed on to the roof of the net.
Elijah Adebayo and Morris had good chances in the second period but the former got the ball caught under his feet and the latter blazed over from seven yards.
Kurt Zouma scored West Ham’s second in the closing stages with a header from a James Ward-Prowse corner.
Luton’s first shot on target came in the 92nd minute and set up a tense finish when defender Mads Andersen headed in, but the Hammers held on for victory.
West Ham have won their last three games to reach the Premier League summit while Luton, playing at home for the first time this season after delays over work at their stadium, are rock bottom without a point to show from their opening three matches.
Reaction to West Ham’s win Premier League win over LutonHow did you rate Luton’s performance? Have your say hereWhat did you make of West Ham’s display? Send us your views herePaqueta puts on a showLuton 1-2 West Ham: Moyes praises ‘brilliant’ HammersIt was only a couple of weeks ago that Paqueta was linked with a move to Premier League champions Manchester City and, on the basis of tonight’s performance, it’s easy to see why Pep Guardiola was interested in the Brazil midfielder.
He was key in helping West Ham take control of the game after Luton, as expected, came out of the blocks with intent in front of their home fans for the first time this season.
Paqueta exuded calmness in the middle third and his vision to deliver the ball for West Ham’s opener was exemplary – placing it on a plate for Bowen to nod in.
The former Lyon midfielder made 77 passes in the game – more than any other player – and also topped the charts for passes in the final third (36).
West Ham boss David Moyes told Sky Sports: “Lucas Paqueta is getting better all the time. He’s got brilliant ability and we needed him today.
“It’s not easy to come here and we were under loads of pressure. Thankfully we stood up to it, got a couple of goals and played pretty well ourselves.”
England forward Bowen was given a huge hand by goalkeeper Kaminski to open the scoring as he took his tally for the season to three goals.
He didn’t score a single goal away from home last season but each of his three strikes this campaign have come on the road.
New signing Mohammed Kudus also got his first taste of Premier League football as a late substitute following a £38m switch from Ajax.
Lack of firepower proves costly for HattersLuton’s promotion from the Championship last season was built largely on a solid defence, with only champions Burnley conceding fewer than the Hatters’ tally of 39.
Keeping clean sheets is going to be much tougher in the top flight and they’ve now conceded nine in three fixtures, putting greater pressure on the attacking players to deliver at the other end.
Going forward, Rob Edwards’ side weren’t prolific in 2022-23, scoring just 57 times – the lowest of any club to finish in the top six.
Scoring goals could prove to be a major issue for them again this term if the amount of chances spurned in their opening three games is anything to go by.
They out-shot West Ham 16-9 at a packed Kenilworth Road but only found the target once, albeit finding a way through via Andersen’s head.
Luton manager Edwards, speaking to BBC Match of the Day, said: “I’ve seen loads of good things and tonight I have seen more again but we have got to be more clinical. That has to be me taking responsibility finding that way and also keeping the back door shut as well.
“We are more than capable of performing well and getting results in this league. We are playing a team that won a European trophy and they are on a high at the moment.”
While Luton were busy on the field there was also plenty taking place off it with a 12th signing of the summer arriving in the shape of Arsenal midfielder Albert Sambi Lokonga, on a season-long loan.
Player of the match
with an average of 8.14
Luton TownSquad number45Player nameDoughty
Squad number16Player nameBurke
Squad number9Player nameMorris
Squad number5Player nameAndersen
Squad number14Player nameChong
Squad number13Player nameNakamba
Squad number26Player nameGiles
Squad number11Player nameAdebayo
Squad number6Player nameBarkley
Squad number29Player nameBell
Squad number24Player nameKaminski
Squad number10Player nameWoodrow
Squad number7Player nameOgbene
Squad number19Player nameBrown
Squad number12Player nameKaboré
Squad number17Player nameMpanzu
West Ham UnitedSquad number20Player nameBowen
Squad number7Player nameWard-Prowse
Squad number4Player nameZouma
Squad number19Player nameÁlvarez
Squad number10Player nameLucas Paquetá
Squad number27Player nameAguerd
Squad number5Player nameCoufal
Squad number33Player nameEmerson
Squad number23Player nameAreola
Squad number9Player nameAntonio
Squad number14Player nameKudus
Squad number22Player nameBenrahma
Squad number8Player nameFornals
Squad number18Player nameIngs
24Kaminski45DoughtySubstituted forOgbeneat 78’minutes16Burke5Andersen29Bell26GilesSubstituted forKaboréat 71’minutes14ChongSubstituted forWoodrowat 84’minutes13NakambaBooked at 87mins6BarkleySubstituted forMpanzuat 71’minutes11AdebayoSubstituted forBrownat 71’minutes9MorrisSubstitutes7Ogbene8Berry10Woodrow12Kaboré17Mpanzu19Brown23Krul38Johnson40Francis-ClarkeWest HamFormation 4-2-3-1
23Areola5Coufal4Zouma27Aguerd33EmersonBooked at 81mins7Ward-Prowse19Álvarez20Bowen10Lucas PaquetáSubstituted forKudusat 90+1’minutes22BenrahmaSubstituted forFornalsat 71’minutes9AntonioSubstituted forIngsat 80’minutesSubstitutes1Fabianski3Cresswell8Fornals14Kudus17Cornet18Ings21Ogbonna24Kehrer45MubamaLive TextMatch ends, Luton Town 1, West Ham United 2.
Second Half ends, Luton Town 1, West Ham United 2.
Attempt blocked. Chiedozie Ogbene (Luton Town) left footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked. Assisted by Cauley Woodrow with a headed pass.
Corner, Luton Town. Conceded by Pablo Fornals.
Offside, West Ham United. Mohammed Kudus tries a through ball, but Jarrod Bowen is caught offside.
Goal! Luton Town 1, West Ham United 2. Mads Andersen (Luton Town) header from the centre of the box to the bottom left corner. Assisted by Carlton Morris with a headed pass.
Substitution, West Ham United. Mohammed Kudus replaces Lucas Paquetá.
Foul by Lucas Paquetá (West Ham United).
Chiedozie Ogbene (Luton Town) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Marvelous Nakamba (Luton Town) is shown the yellow card.
Lucas Paquetá (West Ham United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Marvelous Nakamba (Luton Town).
Goal! Luton Town 0, West Ham United 2. Kurt Zouma (West Ham United) header from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by James Ward-Prowse with a cross following a corner.
Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Marvelous Nakamba.
Substitution, Luton Town. Cauley Woodrow replaces Tahith Chong.
Attempt missed. Carlton Morris (Luton Town) right footed shot from the centre of the box is too high.
Foul by Danny Ings (West Ham United).
Reece Burke (Luton Town) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Emerson (West Ham United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.
Foul by Emerson (West Ham United).