Match ends, West Ham United 2, Norwich City 0.
West Ham forward Jarrod Bowen is “knocking on the door” for an England call-up, according to Hammers boss David Moyes.
Bowen scored both goals against bottom club Norwich City to lift his side above Arsenal into fourth in the Premier League table.
The former Hull City player, who signed in a £20m-plus deal in January 2020, has eight goals in all competitions this season, including three in his last two appearances, and has a further eight assists in 2021-22.
Asked after his side’s fourth straight league and cup win whether Bowen was ready for an England call, Moyes told BBC Radio 5 Live: “It’s Gareth [Southgate] who makes the decisions and Gareth has picked really well over the last few years.
“I think he is knocking on the door because he’s beginning to score and is getting assists.
“But the competition to get in the England team – especially those wide areas – is incredible. It’s a really difficult job to get in the team but he’s doing a great job for West Ham and that’s what I’m interested in.”
The Hammers’ third consecutive top-flight win saw them move two points ahead of fifth-placed Arsenal, who have a game in hand, and four above Tottenham, who are sixth and have played three games less.
“We have to try to keep it going,” Moyes added.
“As long as we are around the mix and European places, that will be really good but if we can hang on the coat tails of teams above, that is what we will try and do.”
“I don’t think being fourth this moment in time means an awful lot, apart from showing we have been consistent.”
Bowen’s strikes condemned Norwich to their sixth straight defeat in the Premier League, with his first coming from Vladimir Coufal’s inviting cross just before the break and his second arriving in the 83rd minute when he turned in Arthur Masuaku’s ball.
The hosts were below their best, but still created several other excellent chances that should have amounted to a more handsome margin of victory.
Bowen had an earlier effort ruled out by VAR, with Nikola Vlasic deemed to be offside and interfering with Norwich goalkeeper Tim Krul, and also hit the woodwork twice, while Michail Antonio blazed over from close range.
On a disappointing evening for the visitors, Adam Idah went close to levelling with the score at 1-0, but saw his drive pushed on to the post by home goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski.
Bar that attempt, however, Dean Smith’s side offered little in attack and have now failed to score a top-flight goal for 540 minutes.
After half an hour of this contest there was little to choose between either side, with the pre-match pyrotechnics arguably offering more excitement than the attacking play on show.
However, the Hammers clicked into gear shortly after, with Moyes barking out instructions and urging his players to provide more intensity.
Bowen’s first disallowed goal only served as a warning to Norwich, who quickly fell behind in the 42nd minute when he rose above Ben Gibson to direct a header into the bottom left corner.
The 25-year-old produced the kind of performance that is only likely to underline his credentials as a prospective England player.
Bowen’s tally of being directly involved in an impressive 16 goals in all competitions this term is the most by an English player operating in the top flight.
The only complaint that could be levelled at Bowen against Norwich was that he didn’t add to his two-goal tally, clipping an effort on to the bar and firing against the right-hand post when well placed.
Only six sides in Premier League history have accumulated fewer points than Norwich after 20 games.
And if their dismal run continues for much longer their hopes of survival look forlorn even if they are still currently within touching distance of fellow strugglers Watford, Newcastle and Burnley.
Smith’s side were neat and tidy in possession but produced just three shots on target, with Idah’s the only one of any note.
Aside from Teemu Pukki, who has scored five times this season, only three other players have registered a top-flight goal.
Unless the Canaries can add some firepower to support their Finland international frontman it is difficult to envisage them pulling off a great escape in their remaining 18 fixtures.
Player of the match
with an average of 9.11
Squad number20Player nameBowen
Squad number41Player nameRice
Squad number10Player nameLanzini
Squad number3Player nameCresswell
Squad number1Player nameFabianski
Squad number8Player nameFornals
Squad number15Player nameDawson
Squad number5Player nameCoufal
Squad number9Player nameAntonio
Squad number11Player nameVlasic
Squad number23Player nameDiop
Squad number26Player nameMasuaku
Squad number7Player nameYarmolenko
Squad number35Player nameIdah
Squad number5Player nameHanley
Squad number1Player nameKrul
Squad number2Player nameAarons
Squad number21Player nameWilliams
Squad number22Player namePukki
Squad number17Player nameRashica
Squad number11Player namePlacheta
Squad number23Player nameMcLean
Squad number4Player nameGibson
Squad number20Player nameLees-Melou
Squad number46Player nameRowe
Squad number10Player nameDowell
Squad number18Player nameTzolis
Match ends, West Ham United 2, Norwich City 0.
Second Half ends, West Ham United 2, Norwich City 0.
Arthur Masuaku (West Ham United) wins a free kick on the left wing.
Foul by Pierre Lees-Melou (Norwich City).
Attempt missed. Kieran Dowell (Norwich City) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Brandon Williams with a cross.
Foul by Aaron Cresswell (West Ham United).
Kieran Dowell (Norwich City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Foul by Vladimir Coufal (West Ham United).
Jonathan Rowe (Norwich City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Attempt saved. Andriy Yarmolenko (West Ham United) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Vladimir Coufal.
Substitution, West Ham United. Andriy Yarmolenko replaces Michail Antonio.
Corner, West Ham United. Conceded by Jonathan Rowe.
Offside, West Ham United. Aaron Cresswell tries a through ball, but Michail Antonio is caught offside.
VAR Decision: Goal West Ham United 2-0 Norwich City (Jarrod Bowen).
Goal! West Ham United 2, Norwich City 0. Jarrod Bowen (West Ham United) left footed shot from very close range to the centre of the goal. Assisted by Arthur Masuaku.Goal awarded following VAR Review.
Jarrod Bowen (West Ham United) wins a free kick on the right wing.
Foul by Brandon Williams (Norwich City).
Foul by Pablo Fornals (West Ham United).
Kenny McLean (Norwich City) wins a free kick in the defensive half.
Substitution, West Ham United. Arthur Masuaku replaces Nikola Vlasic.