Published 05/04/2021 at 18:20 GMT | Updated 05/04/2021 at 22:00 GMT
Jesse Lingard's remarkable individual goal helped West Ham jump to fourth in the table, courtesy of a 3-2 victory over Wolves at Molineux.
With just six minutes gone, Lingard received the ball 10 yards inside his own half on the break and, after racing thirty yards towards goal, traversed the field past three defenders before clipping a pall over Rui Patricio.
The England forward was involved in the second goal eight minutes later as he played in Michail Antonio who squared for Pablo Fornals to slot home.
Six minutes before the break, Lingard then set up Jarrod Bowen, just on for the injured Antonio, on the break who drove home low at the near post.
A minute before the break, Leander Dendoncker headed Adama Traore's cross home to keep Wolves in the game and a fine finish from Fabio Silva after Pedro Neto's incisive ball over the West Ham defence midway through the second half meant a nervy end to the match for the Hammers.
Talking point - Is this the night West Ham’s top four challenge dropped off?
On the surface, West Ham going into the top four with eight games remaining should be a great night for the Hammers, but Michail Antonio being forced off nine minutes before the break will worry fans they will not be able to sustain this run.
The Hammers did superbly to not let the absence of Declan Rice affect them, albeit helped by the most hospitable defending from Wolves, but a prolonged spell without Michail Antonio could have a devastating impact on the best chance they have ever had of playing Champion’s League football.
His eight goals in the last seven games ensured West Ham’s survival last season and the way he looked tonight you would not have ruled out a similar end to this season.
Although Jesse Lingard scored the outstanding goal, Antonio was just as unplayable early in the game, equally capable of beating the Wolves defence with power, pace or skill.
As good as Lingard is playing, without this triple threat that Antonio possesses, he will not have such space to thrive.
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Man of the match – Jesse Lingard
It is hard to think of a player whose career has fluctuated so drastically, maybe since Eric Cantona.
At least with Cantona his talent was not in doubt, more whether his temperament would allow him to play at the top level, before he joined Leeds and helped them to the 1991/92 league title.
Lingard’s plight looked hopeless after just one league goal in the last two years, but he is a rejuvenated player and even the bare stats of six goals and four assists in eight games do not do him justice.
Outside Manchester City and Tottenham's Son Heung-min he looks as dangerous as any player in the league on the break and all three goals in this game came from his direct urgency and sublime instincts in the final third.
Though he was less involved in the game in the second half as West Ham were often camped in their half, he still looked dangerous when in possession and continued to run himself into the ground defensively for his team.
6’ WHAT A GOAL! Lingard with an exceptional goal. What confidence he is playing with now. He received the ball 60 yards from goal and he raced towards goal before, with the aid of Antonio's decoy run, traversing the pitch and clipping home with his left foot beyond the keeper.
14’ GOAL FOR WEST HAM! Great work from Lingard chasing a ball down the left wing and keeping it in by the corner flag then clipping a ball inside which Antonio uses to set up Fornals eight yards from goal and he opens up his body to pass the ball into the far corner.
39’ GOAL FOR WEST HAM! What an introduction from Bowen. Lingard raced on the break as he did for that marvellous goal earlier but on this occasion he passed the ball through to Bowen who drove the ball home inside the near post.
44’ GOAL FOR WOLVES! Dendocker heads home from six yards converting Traore's deep cross, which followed a dazzling 60 yard run from the winger.
68’ GOAL FOR WOLVES! Fabio Silva finishes superbly into the far corner from a narrow angle after a fine ball over the West Ham defence by Neto.