West Ham star Jarrod Bowen really didn’t like something Lucas Paqueta did at Leeds but it got the job done.
Leeds United and West Ham played out an entertaining 2-2 draw under the lights at Elland Road on Wednesday night.
The result was frustrating for both sides in many respects.
Leeds will regret wasting several chances as they were also denied by Lukasz Fabianski while West Ham threw away a rare lead having clawed their way back from 1-0 down.
In the end a point was probably a fair result for both West Ham and Leeds in what was at times a tempestuous match between two struggling sides.
Jarrod Bowen had his best game for some time and won the penalty which got West Ham back into the game.
After missing a penalty during a defeat at Liverpool earlier this season, Bowen has been taken off spot kick duty since.
A host of West Ham players have taken penalties this season including Manuel Lanzini and Said Benrahma.
This time £51m Brazilian midfielder Paqueta stepped up to take it and duly brought the game level at 1-1.
West Ham star Bowen really didn’t like something Paqueta did at Leeds but it got the job done.
Paqueta elected for a staggered run up before a one-step curling finish which was high enough to evade Ilan Meslier, who dived the right way.
And speaking to West Ham TV after the game, Bowen described Paqueta’s penalty as ‘great’ but admitted he did not like his style of run-up.
“Lucas Paquetá took a great penalty,” Bowen told West Ham TV.
“I’m glad he was confident because the way he ran up, I wasn’t!”
“I’ve spoken recently about the character in this group. We know it is here. We get the penalty to get us back into the game before half-time, which was good for us. I think going in a goal down would have been even more difficult.”
You can see where Bowen is coming from. Paqueta’s run up had a touch of the Simone Zaza about it. But he stuck it away and got the job done and at the end of the day that is all that matters.
Many expected Gianluca Scamacca to take it given his lack of goals and confidence.
But it is good to have a variety of options for penalties because it keeps the opposition guessing.