Hull City’s journey in the Carabao Cup came to an end on Tuesday night, losing 5-1 to a strong West Ham side at the Olympic Stadium.

First half goals from ex-Tiger Robert Snodgrass, a Sebastian Haller double, followed by a Adriy Yarmolenko penalty and stoppage time strike were enough to sink City, who could not reproduce the stunning display at Leeds United a week ago, despite a spirited fightback in the second half which saw Mallik Wilks come off the bench to score again.

What happened on the pitch, however, became the secondary story of the evening after it was revealed during the first half that Hammers boss David Moyes, along with two players named in the starting XI, had tested positive for coronavirus.

Boss McCann handed a full debut to Thomas Mayer after he came off the bench to create Wilks’ opener against Crewe on Saturday, while there was a return for George Long in goal and the Northern Irishman rang the changes.

West Ham United's Robert Snodgrass and Hull City's George Honeyman battle for the ball
West Ham United's Robert Snodgrass and Hull City's George Honeyman battle for the ball

For the Hammers, ex-City duo Snodgrass and Jarrod Bowen were involved, with the Scot starting in an expensively assembled side, while Bowen found himself on the bench.

There were two late changes to Moyes’ side, with Issa Diop and Josh Cullen being replaced by Harrison Ashby and Jack Wilshere in the Starting XI. David Martin was also added as a second goalkeeper to the bench.

Barely two minutes were on the clock when big-money signing Felipe Anderson came in off the left flank and fizzed a shot towards goal, only beating Long’s right-hand upright by inches, before the mercurial Brazilian bent another shot over.

City were struggling to get hold of the ball and could have found themselves a goal down 10 minutes when Harrison Ashby turned inside the box, beat Brandon Fleming only to fire at Long.

You sensed the hosts were up for it and it felt as if the goal wouldn’t be too far away, and so it proved.

A stoppage which saw Richie Smallwood leave the pitch injured and replaced by George Honeyman did little to stem the tide for City, and with an overload at the back post and a clever ball from Andriy Yarmolenko, ex-Tiger Snodgrass composed himself to volley across Long and into the bottom corner.

Dejection for Hull City's James Scott after West Ham's second goal
Dejection for Hull City's James Scott after West Ham's second goal

The strange feel of the half continued, with West Ham dominating the ball and on the stroke of half-time it was 2-0.

Sloppy play from the visitors allowed Haller to thrash the ball into the net, a lead which looked unassailable.

Despite a bright start to the second period from McCann’s men, it was the Hammers who bared their teeth again.

Yet more sloppy play at the back saw Sean McLoughlin foul the lively Haller, with referee Hooper wasting no time in pointing to the spot.

Hammers star man Yarmolenko sent Long the wrong way to make it 3-0.

To their credit, City refused to lie down as McCann sent on Keane Lewis-Potter and Mallik Wilks for Mayer and James Scott.

Just as he did on Saturday, Wilks scored City’s goal, firing past Darren Randolph after a great pick-out from George Long.

Magennis then had a header saved right by his post from the Republic of Ireland international goalkeeper, as City chased an unlikely route back into things.

Haller wrapped up his second late on, before the brilliant Yarmolenko made it 5-1 to add a harsh gloss to the scoreline.

City have enjoyed their run, they’ve beaten Leeds, but they can now – until the return of the EFL Trophy at least, focus on their League One campaign starting with Saturday’s trip to Northampton.

Hull City players prior to kick-off at West Ham United
Hull City players prior to kick-off at West Ham United

Good day?

Sebastian Haller. The striker has been often maligned since his move to east London, two goals here, however, will boost his confidence, albeit against League One opposition.

Bad day?

George Long. Welcome back, George. First game of the season and he’s picking the ball out of his net five times. Who’d be a goalkeeper, eh?

Up next…

Northampton Town. Forget this, we all enjoyed the win over Leeds and that was a memory made early in the season. League One points in the battle for promotion will be key and that quest goes again on Saturday.

City tormentor

Adriy Yarmolenko. The best player on the pitch by some distance. Always had space, created the second goal with a lovely ball into the box, scored twice and could have had himself the matchball.

Ref watch

Simon Hooper – not the most challenging game to referee for the Premier League official. Largely down to the fact City could barely get near their Premier League opponents at times.

West Ham starting XI: Randolph, Balbuena, Johnson, Wilshere, Alese, Ashby, Snodgrass, Lanzini, Yarmolenko, F. Anderson, Haller. Subs: Trott, Martin, Coventry, Longelo-Mbule, Bowen, Xande Silva