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Football Premier League Sport

Arnautovic ends drought as West Ham sink Saints

West Ham's Marko Arnautovic, who had last found the net on Jan. 2, scored twice

Two goals from Marko Arnautovic and Ryan Fredericks’s first Premier League strike helped West Ham beat Southampton 3-0 at London Stadium on Saturday to complete their first league double over the Saints since 2001.

Austrian Arnautovic, who had last found the net on Jan. 2, bagged the opener after Yan Valery misdirected a 16th-minute pass to Mark Noble. The midfielder slipped the ball through for Arnautovic, who produced a typically clinical finish past Fraser Forster.

Southampton’s keeper was back between the posts for the first time since December, 2017 and will be disappointed with his failure to clear danger ahead of Arnautovic’s second on 69 minutes.

Forster only succeeded in punching the ball at the striker who headed home from close range for his fifth goal against the Saints in as many games. Fredericks completed the rout, firing home after a clever one-two with Jack Wilshere three minutes later.

Before the Hammers’ second-half goal burst, Southampton had looked the more likely to score, with the lively Nathan Redmond, who had replaced Danny Ings at the interval, forcing a fine save from Lukasz Fabianski.

But the visitors always looked vulnerable to the counter-attack and Arnautovic went close to securing his hat-trick when he curled a late shot wide.

WOLVERHAMPTON WANDERERS 1 FULHAM 0

Elsewhere on Saturday, a Leander Dendoncker volley gave Wolverhampton Wanderers a 1-0 victory over Fulham at Molineux to put them on the verge of a seventh-placed finish in the Premier League.

The victory takes Wolves four points clear of Everton in eighth in the standings. If ninth-placed Leicester City do not beat Manchester City on Monday night, the top-flight newcomers will be assured of their highest finish in the Premier League era.

Already-relegated Fulham came into the contest having won their last three games, and frustrated their opponents early on.

Dendoncker came closest to scoring in the first half, but saw his header came out off the crossbar.

Wolves improved after the break and Dendoncker’s cushioned volley broke the deadlock with 15 minutes remaining.

A brilliant save from Sergio Rico denied Diogo Jota a second, but Wolves saw out the victory to move a step closer to qualifying for next season’s Europa League.

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