West Ham missed the chance to climb into the Premier League top four after a 1-1 draw at home to Newcastle United.
Despite being without the injured Allan Saint-Maximin and Kieran Trippier, the Magpies were the better side and carved out more chances in the first half.
The Hammers, who started with Kurt Zouma, slowly found their rhythm and went closest to scoring when the in-form Jarrod Bowen’s shot was tipped onto the bar by Martin Dubravka.
And against the run of the play, David Moyes’ side took the lead when Aaron Cresswell’s freekick found an unmarked Craig Dawson with a diving header for his second goal this week after his equaliser against Leicester.
The Magpies’ pressure paid off on the stroke of half-time when a terrible header in the Hammers box from the below par Declan Rice set up Joe Willock whose shot across the goalkeeper went in off the post. Moyes brought on Ben Johnson and Nikola Vlasic in the second half but it was the visitors who created the better opportunities with the impressive Willock shooting wide from distance.
The Scot brought on Vlasic for Said Benrahma who had an angry exchange of words with the Hammers boss after coming off.
The result means West Ham remain fifth, a point behind fourth-placed Manchester United who play Leeds United on Sunday, while Newcastle stay in 17th position.
West Ham’s form concerning in their bid for top four.
The Hammers have only one league win from their past five games.
And the goals are drying up with Michail Antonio failing to score since New Years Day and he gave another below par performance today along with Rice.
They were fortunate to come away with a point today with sections of the crowd booing at the final whistle.
West Ham need to return to form soon if they are not to lose ground to Manchester United and particularly Wolves, Tottenham and Arsenal who have plenty of games-in-hand on them.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Joe Willock (Newcastle): The former Arsenal midfielder returned to the form he showed last season. He won the midfield battle with Declan Rice, was a threat throughout with his pace and trickery and deserved his goal
WEST HAM: Fabianski 6, Fredericks 4, Zouma 5, Dawson 8, Cresswell 7, Rice 4, Soucek 5, Fornals 5, Benrahma 5, Bowen 7, Antonio 5.Subs: Johnson 6. Vlasic n/a.
NEWCASTLE: Dubravka 6, Krafth 7, Schar 7, Burn 7, Targett 6, Willock 8, Shelvey 7, Joelinton 5, Murphy 7, Fraser 6, Wood 5. Sub: Almiron n/a, Guimares n/a.
20′ WOODWORK – From a flick on, Bowen’s shot from a tight angle is beilliantly tipepd onto the bar by Dubravka.
32′- GOAL FOR WEST HAM! From a freekick, Creswell’s delivery is headed in by Dawson who was unmarked.
45’+2 – GOAL FOR NEWCASTLE! Terrible header from Rice attempting to clear it and Willock manages to stick a foot out to divert the ball across Fabianski and off the inside of the post. Goal line technology awards the goal.