Antonio for HOTY: Five things we learned from West Ham's season defining win over Tottenham Hotspur

Upton Park

West Ham United put a big dent in Tottenham Hotspur's title aspirations with a season defining win over their rivals, but what did we learn from the match?

The Hammers beat Spurs 1-0 at the Boleyn Ground on Wednesday night, the last time the sides will ever play there with the East Londoners set for their big move to the Olympic Stadium in the summer.

Michail Antonio got the all important goal on seven minutes with a thumping header from Dimitri Payet's curling corner.

So what did we learn about West Ham from the game?

1) Payet has an impact even when he's not on top form

By his own high standards Hammers superstar Dimitri Payet has been a bit hot and cold of late. Against Sunderland and Tottenham he was not as dazzling as usual. But crucially he still had a decisive impact on the game, providing a brilliant corner right on the head of Antonio for the deciding goal. He showed flashes against Spurs but Mauricio Pochettino's side did a decent job on him. Was still a threat throughout and his passing was still sublime to help the Hammers build their attacks.

2) Antonio is fast becoming the Hammer of the Year

While Payet has been getting all the headlines this season and rightly so, Michail Antonio is coming up on the rails and right into contention for the club's prestigious Hammer of the Year award. The honour is given extra significance this season as it is the club's last at their home of 112 years and Antonio's guts, graft, determination, superb attitude, power, pace, energy, stamina and goals - including the clincher in this massive game - have put him right up there with Payet. He worked his socks off against Spurs filling in at right back but still managed to get up and down all game and even soldiered on for the last 20 minutes when he looked to be pretty badly injured. He has now scored in four consecutive home games and it is hard to believe the former non-league star was not even getting in West Ham's squad at the beginning of the season. But he took his chance when the Hammers suffered a glut of injuries in November and has never looked back. Grafter and The Beast are just two of the nicknames already bestowed on Antonio from the terraces, a sure sign that supporters haven taken him to their hearts.

3) Emenike can do a job

Many West Ham fans have been sceptical about new January striker signing Emmanuel Emenike. His glaring misses at Southampton and Norwich City cost Slaven Bilic's side at least four points and although he bagged a brace in a 5-1 FA Cup win at Blackburn, he still managed to miss a few sitters at Ewood Park. Before kick-off against Tottenham Emenike looked to be the Hammers' weakest link. And although he didn't get a sniff of goal, he did not stop running, chasing and harrying Tottenham's backline and 'keeper Hugo Lloris all night. It worked too with the Spurs back five totally unsettled by his willingness to run for everything and his strength and hold-up play brought the likes of Payet, Lanzini and Noble into play. He was given a standing ovation when he was substituted through pure exhaustion late on and deservedly so.

4) Nothing can replicate those special Upton Park nights

With the Hammers set to move to the Olympic Stadium in five months' time, it is a very emotional period for the club's fans. Supporters, players and pundits always wax lyrical about the famous atmosphere under the lights at the Boleyn Ground and Wednesday evening was one of those. Logic says with 20,000 or so more West Ham fans packing into the new stadium in Stratford, those nights should be even more special. But there is something about Upton Park and an evening game which cannot be replicated anywhere else. It is a special place to play football and the atmosphere under the lights against Spurs on Wednesday will live long in the memory of every fan that was there.

5) Forget Kante, we've got Obiang

While Antonio won the man of the match award on the night, many Hammers' fans left the ground singing the praises of classy Spanish star Pedro Obiang. Schooled at Atletico Madrid and a student of the game in Serie A with Sampdoria, Obiang has had to bide his time for games at his new club this season. Many fans feel he should play more often and on this performance you can see why. Obiang was everywhere last night and like N'Golo Kante does for Leicester, he broke up Spurs' play time and again to set up counter attacks. Calm in possession Obiang also has a fantastic passing range akin to former Hammers and Spurs star Michael Carrick. If he continues to play like this Slaven Bilic will not be able to leave him out of the side.

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