Arsenal and West Ham meet as they search for their first Premier League points


Unai Emery is still searching for his first points as Arsenal boss (photo credit: Arsenal).

<h3> Arsenal and West Ham meet as they search for their first Premier League points </h3>

By Jimmy Whitehead


Arsenal and West Ham are battling for their first points of the season this weekend. The London teams have had tough starts to the season so far with two losses in their opening games. A win against a London rival could be what each manager needs to give both teams a much-needed boost. For the second time in as many weeks, the Gunners playing against opposition in the capital.

Team News
Club captain Laurent Koscielny gave the Unai Emery a defensive options as he returned to training. It’s probably too soon for the Frenchman to play in the London derby against the Hammers as he gets back to match fitness. Full-backs Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Carl Jenkinson and Sead Kolasniac are still side-lined for the foreseeable future.

Lucas Torriera is yet to start a game for his new club but has featured off the bench. Granit Xhaka is facing early season pressure after a sluggish start to the campaign, perhaps he will surrender his place to the Uruguayan international. Alex Iwobi impressed against Chelsea, although his efforts were in vein as they lost 3-2. The Arsenal boss has a difficult choice whether to start Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang or Alexandre Lacazette in the striker position, during pre-season the pair started together but that duo has yet to start in tandem in the early stages on the season.

West Ham have selection decisions of their own to contemplate. Manuel Pellegrini admitted he doesn’t know his best XI yet, not surprising with nine new recruits in the ranks. The Hammers will be without Manuel Lanzini, Andy Carroll and Winston Reid due to injury.

Former Arsenal player Jack Wilshere returns to The Emirates for the first time since departing Arsenal on a free transfer in July. Along with Carlos Sanchez coming in to the holding role with stalwart Mark Noble. Former Gunner Lucas Perez is yet to make his debut while new signing Andriy Yarmolenko could start his first game for his new side.

Arsenal have the edge over West Ham in the head-to-head, the Gunners have only lost one in the last 22 competitive games against the Hammers. The talent of Arsenal should overcome a West Ham side still working out the kinks. The Emirates stadium has been a fortress for the Gunners against London teams recently, they haven’t lost at home since 2016 against sides from the capital.

The fire power that Emery has at his disposal should be enough to see past West Ham. Midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan was a stand-out player in the last match against Chelsea, involved in both of Arsenal’s goals. If the playmaker can create the chances he did against the Blues, then West Ham could be in trouble.
The loss of Reid for the East London team is an issue as the defence looked all at sea in their first two games. They have conceded six goals already and face a team that created a lot of chances against a stronger team last week. Emery wants his Arsenal team to press high against the opposition. Bournemouth and Liverpool proved this tactic to be effective against West Ham, the Hammers didn’t look comfortable against the pressure.

Marko Arnautovic will be the main threat to Arsenal. With the defensive frailties that the North London team have showed so far this season he may thrive in the game with his aggressive nature and direct style of play. There is still a soft underbelly at Arsenal which can be exposed.

West Ham spent over £100 million on new signings over the summer and yet have nothing to show for it. Such a raft of signings will take time to gel, as Everton demonstrated last season, Pellegrini must foster results soon lest he find himself under early pressure from an already restless West Ham fanbase. His record against Arsenal doesn’t bode well as the Chilean has only one win against the Gunners in 11 attempts. 12th time lucky?


Nothing Found

Apologies, but no results were found for the requested archive. Perhaps searching will help find a related post.


Nothing Found

Apologies, but no results were found for the requested archive. Perhaps searching will help find a related post.


About Author

Comments are closed.