As omen’s go, the sight of a boat full of West Ham supporters crashing into Hammersmith Bridge on its way up the Thames was probably not a brilliant one for David Moyes’s side.
First-half goals from Raul Jimenez, Willian and Tosin Adarabioyo made this a genuine cruise for Marco Silva’s men, who have put their early season woes in front of goal behind them to score 16 times in just four matches since the international break.
Harry Wilson’s stunner after the interval was the pick of the bunch, with Carlos Vinicius’s late tap-in completing a chastening afternoon for West Ham, who suffered their heaviest defeat under Moyes.
After a superb result in winning at Tottenham in midweek, this was a worrying follow-up for the Hammers boss, whose side are looking leggy just as the fixture list goes into overdrive. Missing Edson Alvarez to illness, and Emerson likewise until he was sent on at the break, there were further troubling indicators of the Irons’s lack of depth.
Silva, unsurprisingly, had seen no reason to deviate from the XI that started the midweek annihilation of Nottingham Forest and Jimenez picked up where had left off there, opening the scoring with a towering header from Joao Palhinha’s cross, the Mexican showing signs at last of his pre-injury form with four goals in his last five matches.
Until the opener, this had been a relatively even affair but it swung markedly in Fulham’s favour thereafter. The visitors looked short on ideas and having just layered one aimless pass in behind to no one, Nayef Aguerd tried to force the issue, fizzing in towards Mohammed Kudus, who had no chance to control under pressure. The white shirts swarmed forward, and while Lukasz Fabianski saved from Alex Iwobi, Andreas Pereira kept the ball alive and Willian steered cooly home at the far post.
There was no let up as Tom Cairney whipped across the face of goal, before Iwobi’s volley was deflected just wide off Aaron Cresswell, with Fabianski committed in the opposite direction. From the resulting corner, though, the lead was extended, Adarabioyo rising miles above Kurt Zouma to power a header that skim off Vladimir Coufal on its way into the roof of the net.
A half-time double-change shift to a back-three did little to enliven the Hammers and instead Wilson, himself on at the break for the injured Willian, should have made it four, spinning beyond Zouma with a glorious touch but then side-footing too close to Fabianski.
No matter, for the Welshman soon made amends with Fulham’s showstopper, a wonderful left-footed strike that began outside the far post and bent crisply into the top corner.
Soon after, Moyes made clear attempt to cut his losses, withdrawing key men in Kudus, Zouma and Lucas Paqueta with a view to Thursday’s crucial Europa League meeting with Freiburg, which will decide who finishes top of the group.
The damage here, though, was not done, Wilson galloping clear with almost comical ease having arched his run perfectly. Perhaps recalling his earlier effort when through one-on-one, the midfielder squared unselfishly to leave Vinicius the simplest of finishes.