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Payet stars on debut

Dimitri Payet made a promising debut for West Ham in their pre-season friendly against Southend, scoring twice and providing an assist as the visitors won 3-2 at Roots Hall.

The big-money signing from Marseille announced himself by curling home a superb free-kick after 26 minutes to cancel out a deflected Kevan Hurst effort that had given the League One side the lead.

And four minutes later the France international struck again, this time calmly finding the net from the edge of the box after a blocked shot from Martin Samuelsen rolled into his path.

Southend were back on level terms before the break courtesy of a close-range finish from Jack Payne, but Payet took centre stage again early in the second half, whipping in a low cross which the luckless Luke Prosser could only deflect into his own net.

Modibo Maiga and Diafra Sakho then went close to extending West Ham’s lead, with the hosts’ highly rated goalkeeper Dan Bentley forced to produce several fine saves to keep Phil Brown’s side in the contest.

The predictable flurry of substitutions from both sides disrupted the flow of the game late on as West Ham, whose competitive season has already begun with UEFA Europa League qualification, ran out victorious.


Sat 18 Jul, 2015
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