Arsenal 2 West Ham United 1 (inc goals)

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A late goal from substitute Eddie Nketiah gave Arsenal a scarcely deserved three points for the Gunners against a well organised and dangerous West Ham side at Emirates Stadium. Alex Lacazette’s header gave the home side a 24th minute lead before Michail Antonio equalised on the stroke of half-time. West Ham made several good opportunities in the second half while Arsenal toiled, but a late goal from substitute Eddie Nketiah saw Arteta’s side gain a hard fought three points.

Arsenal lined up in their now customary 343 formation but Mikel Arteta was forced into a late line-up change when Kieran Tierney felt his hip in the warm-up, so he was replaced by Sead Kolasinac in that hybrid left-sided centre-half / left-back role.

The Gunners had an early sight of goal inside the first two minutes when Willian and Lacazette exchanged passes inside the West Ham area, but the Frenchman’s control let him down in front of goal. West Ham threatened from a set piece soon after when  Soucek’s back post header found Ogbonna in the area but he headed tamely at Leno.

West Ham matched up Arsenal’s 343 formation with the Irons’ three forwards playing in transition, space was at a premium as Arteta’s side struggled to establish their rhythm in the opening exchanges with West Ham collapsing back into a 541 when Arsenal probed.

Arsenal had to be patient but did take the lead on 24 minutes when Saka’s through ball found Aubameyang in the left half space, the Gabonese bounded to the by-line and stood an inviting ball up in the area for Alex Lacazette who headed high into the net. The goal was subject to a VAR check but Stockley Park ruled that Auba’s toenail was marginally onside from Saka’s pass.

There was another tense VAR moment a few moments later when Gabriel slightly mistimed an attempted headed clearance and the ball struck his arm in the area. Given the harshness of the new handball laws for defenders it would not have been a surprise to see a penalty given, but thankfully it wasn’t.

However, West Ham drew level right on the stroke of half time. The away side had looked threatening on the counter for the entire half and it was a swift counter attack that led to the equaliser. Jarrod Bowen picked up a turnover inside the Arsenal half and moved forwards, he found Fornals on the overlap to his right and his cross was prodded home from close range by Michail Antonio.

It was a frustrating concession but probably a fair reflection of the opening 45 minutes. It was a poor goal to concede with Kolasinac slow to notice Fornals’ run on the outside of him and Rob Holding brushed aside by Antonio as the two competed for the low cross.

In the second half, Arsenal looked to overload on the left side a lot more, with Kolasinac pushing on from left-back and Bukayo Saka playing more like a left sided central midfielder in support of Aubameyang on the left wing. Willian drifted over to the left on occasion too. But West Ham had the first big chance of the half when Fredericks cross found Antonio in the six yard area again but Gabriel’s presence was just enough to make him scuff his finish into the grateful arms of Bernd Leno.

The Gunners still struggled to assert themselves on West Ham though and on 64 minutes, Mikel Arteta made a switch, with Nicolas Pepe replacing Willian. West Ham were still the team who carried the most threat and another left wing delivery from Fredericks was headed onto the bar by Antonio on 66 minutes.

By the 73rd minute, West Ham had registered eight second half attempts on goal to Arsenal’s one, with the home side forced into some last ditch defending at times. Arteta threw the dice again when he replaced a tired looking Lacazette with Eddie Nketiah on 76 minutes. Once again it was a game where the team’s lack of creativity and presence between the lines was laid bare.

However, the Nketiah switch paid dividends on 85 minutes. A move very similar to Arsenal’s opener carved West Ham open again as Saka poked the ball to Ceballos in the left half space, the Spaniard squared the ball for Nketiah to roll into an open net. It was a goal very much against the run of play.

Ultimately Arteta’s decision to select Saka ahead of Maitland-Niles was justified with Saka’s eye of the needle passing making a difference with both Arsenal goals. It was far from a convincing performance and West Ham could have justifiably felt aggrieved with a point, let alone zero. Arteta’s grin and clenched fist at the final whistle told the story as his side were made to sweat for their victory.

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Comedian

Games like this shows how much we need a midfield which can inject creativity and pace….at times it was too slow. But glad we still got three points. Tierney was a massive miss.

Adrian

That was not a good performance but win is win. It’s good thing to win even when you are not playing well. Hope this will open eyes of management and they will try to sign MFs. Good it happened before transfer end date. Easy win today might have paper over the cracks in MF.

Johnny 4 Hats

Yeah, Kolasinac can’t really do the job that Kieran does. We need to be able to go four at the back so we aren’t overrun in midfield but I don’t think Arteta fancies it yet.

The Arsenal

Arteta knows we are too weak in the middle and not great at the back yet.

IamaGoober

I literally have no idea how we won that. If you were a West Ham player sitting on the bus on the way home, you’d be gobsmacked you didnt get something from the game. We were absolutely diabolical for pretty much the entire 90 minutes bar two pieces of tidy work from Saka in tight spaces in the final third. Once to release Auba, and the other occasion he slipped in Dani. Other than that — we had absolutely nothing. I think the stat was 4 shots on target against a West Ham side that lost to Newcastle. Which is… Read more »

The Swede

We won it because we scored two goals while West Ham scored one goal. If you want to win games you have to create real goalscoring opportunities and thats something we did better than them. Sure, they had better stats in terms of shots but its not like they troubled Leno alot. I dont think he had to make a really difficult save during the whole game as a matter of fact. With that said: Kolasinac is faaaar away from Tierneys quality and we certainly need one or two new midfielders. And Willian was brought off because was kind of… Read more »

IamaGoober

I honestly have no idea what game you were watching. West Ham consistently caused us problems in key areas last night and the only thing that stopped them from scoring more goals was some extremely fortuitous defending or their own lack of attacking quality when it mattered. It ha nothing to do with our quality of keeping them out. We basically just rode our luck and got away with it. Any decent side would have scored maybe 2 or 3 times last night. And to only have 4 shots on target against a side that lost 2 nil away to… Read more »

Drogheda Gunner

Westham only had 3 shots on target. Why are you so negative we won the game.

Drogheda Gunner

Win when your playing badly hallmark of good team, the way your talking we lost the game. We defo need aouir type in middle of the park.

Cygan’sbaldspot

I’ve been watching Arsenal for 22 years and I’m not being hyperbolic when I say that Kolasinac is one of the worst footballers I’ve ever seen at the club.

Femi

Worst than Santos.Yeah!

IamaGoober

Being Brazilian Santos wasn’t technically shit. He could actually pass a ball. Kolasinac genuinely cant even do that.

Goonerrah

Saka was the best player for us today, made 2 pre-assists and worked hard to find space when everyone was lazy. Laca scored but was terrible and in my opinion Eddie is better.

Kola is straight up the worst player on the team and can F*** right off. I would pay to make him leave. Xhaka was just as bad today.

Johnny 4 Hats

I think it’s harsh to throw certain players under the bus when the team effort was very poor. No one covered themselves in glory. Everyone made mistakes. Kolasinac hasn’t played that role before and he struggled. But let’s not be too discouraging.

IamaGoober

I’m sorry Johnny, but that performance from Kolasinac was shocking for a senior professional. He was barely completing passes at times. I cannot understand for the life of me why Arteta wouldn’t use Luiz or AMN instead of him. Also fairly sure Kolasinac has played as a make shift centre half in a back 3 quite a few times before for us. I agree that Xhaka was also so awful today. It was a throwback to one of his Emery like performances. He gave the ball away so easily in midfield. There was a particular moment in the first 20… Read more »

Johnny 4 Hats

I don’t think Luiz was ready and we don’t want to risk him too early as he’s so important right now. As for AMN, I know he’s versatile but I’m pretty sure he’s never been near a role like that. It’s actually a very technical thing that Tierney does and Kolasinac didn’t know he was playing until 30 mins before kick off.

It was poor. The whole thing. And I’m sure Arteta is working hard to get Kolasinac off his books. But let’s give his performance a little context.

IamaGoober

Well why not do something like play Xhaka as the third centre back. Even a semi fit Luiz is better. Just do anything other than give Kolasinac minutes. The guy is so awful. It’s actually not his fault that Arteta keeps playing him, but he just shouldn’t be getting minutes there. His performance context? The guy was absolutely brutal against a West Ham side who are all things considered relegation candidates. We weren’t playing Liverpool or City, where he was being pressed into mistakes constantly. We were playing West Ham, and Kolasinac under know pressure at all was giving the… Read more »

Thierry Bergkamp (non negotiable)

Spot on. We need an upgrade on Xhaka for sure. He plays some nice passes occasionally, but everything is so slow from him. He’s not the player we need for our ambitions.

Drogheda Gunner

This is everything that’s wrong with our fanbase,we win the game and the way this idiot is talking we lost 5 or 6 níl. No wonder are fans our the laughing stock of the rest of the league. Liverpool won 7 or 8 times like this last year and no I’m not saying we’re as good as them.

etp

This is a bad take across the board.

Goonerrah

You must have watched another match then.

etp

You really think Eddie is better than Laca?

Justno

Xhaka wasn’t good but played some brilliant balls over their defence and through the lines e.g. Pass through the lines to Saka in the build up to the first goal.

Goonerrah

All the balls he played over the defense were over hit and he missed so many more chances to put Auba and Saka through. Saka worked hard to find the angle for Xhaka to pass, its not a brilliant pass by Xhaka.

Saka did all the work unlocking the defense today. All of it

Lakshya

You’ve received a lot of downvotes, probably for wording it so harshly. Otherwise I mostly agree with these opinions. Saka was Man of the Match with his two through-balls. Whether as a LCB or LWB, what does Kola even do except receive the ball and pass it straight back to Xhaka or Gabriel/Luiz (whoever is the nearest central player behind him)? This has been true since Arteta started. Under Emery, he was at least good going forward, but not anymore. Laca and Xhaka were as the rest of the team were, not especially terrible as you say. There was just… Read more »

Vaibhav Pandey

Without Tierney, that left side was overexposed mainly because Saka is not AMN and hence every attack nearly came from our left. Arteta should have seen it and imo he prioritized attack more than defense yet this gamble could have very well backfired. Just look at where Saka is when West Ham attacks us for first goal, so much of green grass in front of them.

PHIL

Ceballos was poor. All the hype he didn’t deserve to bench Elneny was trying too hard and forcing play always taking too many touches on the ball and then passing it sideways back to Xhaka and then apologize to runners making good runs ahead of him he did this at least 4 times in the first half alone.I think Elneny should’ve kept his place especially against a physical west ham team. Ceballos got bullied in midfield he’s too small and lacks pace. also he kept going into xhakas position all the time to pick up the ball instead of staying… Read more »

Johnny 4 Hats

Got to disagree and Dani’s 85th minute game winning assist should be enough to justify his place in the team.

Elneny is solid enough but at home against a struggling West Ham side you need to be more positive than that. I think Xhaka and Ceballos needed help in there against a West Ham side who played a 451 in defence. They were constantly outnumbered and found it hard to find space.

Plus, we got the same amount of points for this game as the Fulham game. So who gives a shit?

Bol

Games like this shows that against low block we will continue to struggle without creativity. Grinding 3 points against low blocks can only take you so far in this league. Hope we bring the money out next week

Bob's Mexican Cousin

The fans were the loudest I’ve heard in years…

Sakaxhakalaca

We struggled with the low block which prevented speedy transitions and exposed a creativity problem in the middle. Our problem was primarily tactical and we will need tactical solutions to solve this. And some personnel upgrades. It showed importance of Tierney including his creativity. Koli completely exposed. And Xhaka simply lacks the close skills to cope with a packed high press midfield. But we won despite this and started to get the measure of West Ham in the last 20 minutes. So like Arteta implied, this was a very positive game – much to learn from it plus three points.… Read more »

Charles

Great result from a pretty poor overall performance. Some quick thoughts: 1. Gabriel was very good, very resolute in defense. He seems to be settling quickly. 2. Good stuff from the manager. It doesn’t feel like we really have options to change the game drastically from the bench, but I’m not sure Laca scores that second goal. Eddie just feels a little quicker and sharper. I thought Laca’s had a good game though, especially in his holdup play. 3. Ceballos was great again. Had a though task but stayed active for 90 minutes. 4. Finally, I thought Xhaka was very… Read more »

Matthinc

I think it was just Nketiah’s freshness! Agree re:Xhaka, though he does hit a good long ball. God it was painful sometimes watching him and Kolasinac.

goonero

I don’t really rate his long passing. I remember watching specialist passers like Pirlo and Fabregas and Alonso and they’re not just hitting good long balls at peoples general direction. The flight and weight and even spin of the ball is always giving the attacker the best possible chance to latch onto it and make something happen. Xhaka just isn’t that calibre of passer. It’s games like today where it should be really obvious that he’s just not got enough about his game to be a starting midfielder for a club with Arsenals ambitions.

goonero

I thought Gabriel was a bit shaky. He clean missed two headers that could’ve ended up as goals (one a very strong penalty shout that probably would’ve been given if it went to VAR) Wasn’t particularly impressed by Arteta this game, I thought he got very lucky the winning goal coming when it did because Ceballos off for Elneny would’ve killed that game. Ceballos had a strong game but it’s painful to see how often he’s left without a reasonable pass on. So he dawdles on the ball hoping someone will offer but 9/10 he’s forced to go backwards or… Read more »

Crash Fistfight

I agree with most of that, but I think the criticism of Xhaka is harsh. He was awful for the first 15-20 minutes, but fine afterwards (not amazing, but not bad).

Also, I disagree on Ceballos. Thought he slowed the game down constantly. He did look to be getting stronger the longer the game went on though, to be fair.

Re: the subs, I thought AMN should’ve come on for Saka, who was getting targeted by West Ham on a number of cross-field balls. I also didn’t think he was particularly dangerous in an attacking sense.

goonero

The only explicit criticism I made of Xhaka (in this particular comment) is he’s very, almost comically, limited. I don’t think that’s objectively harsh. I’m just desperate for a midfielder who brings more to the table than long range pingers with pretty average success rate and a below average key pass rating. I’ll have to rewatch the game when I get a chance but my initial impression was Ceballos hold onto the ball intelligently waiting for higher value passes. Sometimes that slows the game down but sometimes that’s exactly what’s needed to retain control of the game. Either way I… Read more »

Crash Fistfight

Wasn’t having a go re: Xhaka. Just your previous comment and the ones above seemed to give too much importance to Xhaka’s limited nature. I don’t think it was a big factor in the overall poor performance.

goonero

Ah no I didn’t think you were having a go at all mate. You disagreed in a very reasonable and measured way so I just tried to reply in kind.

GeoffRey Hurstmaker

Although he did play two incisive through balls that led to goals….

Drogheda Gunner

Every decision goes var. It was not a pen and either was United a pen either.

Reality check

He’s just too slow and unambitious on the ball”

Would you not give Xhaka credit for any of his high through balls. I counted at least six and 3 of them were successful but wasted. You also have to give credit Hammers for their performance, they had a point to prove. But fortunately, we didn’t roll over like we usually did for the last 5 odd years. We are in it to challenge not charity. We needed to be ruthless and that’s the positive attitude change I am taking away from this game.

Charles

100%, I didn’t really intend that to be harsh of Xhaka. I think he’s got real situational value, it just isn’t games like this where breaking down a defense is almost the only way through.

As for the Arteta bit, my feeling is that he doesn’t really have much to work with. Pepe is an excellent option to have. It’s just that he’s not so diametrically different from Willian that the defense has to worry about much new beyond freshness.

Greg in Seattle

I thought Xhaka was better than Ceballos on the day, since his lingering on the ball allow West Ham plenty of time to adjust their shape. But for me the weakest player on the day was Holding. Looked extremely uncertain and their goal…we’d be shellacking Mustafi for allowing Antonio inside of him like that.

Crash Fistfight

You didn’t think Kolasinac was the weakest player on the day? (Not that I thought Holding was good, but still.)

Greg in Seattle

Yeah, I guess my expectations for Kola are already low and he was a last minute lineup change. I don’t see him being a contributor once others get healthy. I take your point and perhaps he was worse overall. Holding…he just looked out of sorts to me. Passes over to Gabriel that we borderline-interceptable, that weird play where Dani though Holding was advancing and he didn’t, and the ball rolled out of bounds, and not staying ball-side on their goal. I’d have rather seen Sokratis in there.

Greg in Seattle

Disagree on Ceballos. Agree with the other observations here that he lingered on the ball and was a tempo-killer in the first half, far moreso than Xhaka. Willian would tuck in and attempt one touch play and Ceballos would repeatedly stop the ball look around, take five touches, and then we’d have to recirculate. Glad he had a big assist at the end but he was not convincing for me. I thought Xhaka was fine.

If Elneny started last game to make a point to Dani about the need to keep the tempo ticking high, it didn’t take.

Johnny 4 Hats

I mean, since the United job Moyes has increasingly been looking like a fella who’s been on a methadone programme for a few years too long.

But I think we might have finally broken him tonight…

Qwaliteee

Good

Var Will Solve The Problem

And if training ground bust ups results in assists and goals like these, i say, more of these please!

Bol

Phew, see how much we missed Tierney. We have no chance against Liverpool without him. Hopefully the injury is not a long layoff. COYG

A Different George

I think that Tierney is going to be a great player for years to come. But to be fair, the role Tierney has played recently seems perfectly designed to take advantage of his (considerable) strengths. He is the left centre-half in a three who becomes a left fullback in possession, with the wingback (Maitland-Niles recently) cutting in to create a midfield three. Kolasinac has really never played this role and is not suited for it.

Bobbyp

Phew!

Twatsloch

You took the phew right out of my mouth.

Artitty

Ceballos was bright. Real gritty performance, I’ll take those three points against a surprisingly good West Ham side any day. 6 POINTS BABY

C.B.

A bit lucky but happy to take the 3 points.

Biggles

Yes, that’s about it. I notice that talk of a Top 4 finish and even the Premiership that was prevalent after the Fulham result has dried up – and quite right to. It’s going to be a long, hard, slog and we won’t get any real idea of our chances until around Christmas.

Artitty

It’s way too early to make any of those predictions! Although, dirty wins like this are exactly the kind of things Champions League teams do ?

Matt P

Well, United were shite, and I am not convinced by Chelsea.

Artitty

I question their defences, but uh, after the Kola masterclass, I’ll reserve judgement

Glenn Gomes

Houseem Aouar ASAP please

iGooner

Clearly in need of creativity. Partey will be a bonus

Jai

As Le Grove said, disgraceful performance.

We need a creative midfielder for sure. This was like an Emery game. But I trust Arteta to get what he wants and then we can ditch this awful 3 at the back formation and get to a 4-3-3

Jai

That being said, look at Arteta’s post match interview. That’s why I love him, he can admit that we weren’t good and that we need to work on a lot

Artitty

Disgraceful is a bit much.

Man Manny

Cheer up man, we could have been Man U.

Der32

Nice end to the Nketiah & Ceballos saga as well. Big 3 points to kick off our home campaign. COYG!

Maniac

Absolute smash and grab. Will gladly take the points, but we need to be a lot better.

The Swede

Smash and grab is an exaggeration. They barely troubled Leno.

Anonymarse

What happened to the team I was watching last week?

C.B.

Fulham? They got beaten again.

Bol

Because that was Fulham, also conceded 4 goals from Leeds. We need to be better to make top 4 tbh

Vino

Fulham also scored 3

Anonymarse

We didn’t give them a sniff.

Pretty lacklustre this week, although west ham were a tougher opponent

Vino

The passing was off today. We lost possession in middle of park even in defence. Thats why it was lackluster defence. I hope its a one off thing

Anonymarse

Yes so do I or this season is going to be another painful one

Jack

Fantastic win, but dearly me you don’t realise how important Tierney is until you lose him. Kola is so immobile and really offers nothing going forward. Hoping Kieran’s injury isn’t serious because my heart can’t take seeing Kola start more PL games

Salibaba and the Forty Thieves

The difference between them was very today. Touching on some Kolasinac moments not mentioned in the article.

On two occasions both Auba and Lacazette were making runs into the left half-space only for Kolasinac to pass it backwards.

Then there was that moment a loved through-ball was played to him at the edge of the 18-yard box and he skied it wide.

This man’s confidence is gone

Johan

What a player we have in Saka. MOTM for me. Great with 3 points but I hope Arteta can instill a bit more fight/energy/will in the players going forward. It felt like we didn’t really turn up today.

Artitty

He needs to build his frame up a bit more, but that’ll come with age. Two pre-assists by my count, and looked dangerous up front. Let’s not forget he’s not a natural fullback.

Yeah I never really noticed that he’s quite skinny. Definitely due to being young.

Once he gets more stocky, the ground duels will be so much easier for him.

A tetra

A win is a win is a win…

Tough one today against an organized WH and with a little bit of luck aswell.
But it’s so important to get the 3 points on the days when the hard work needs to get done.
It’s improving the morale a lot.

Two brilliant goals with brilliant individual skills behind them and it was enough for today.

Kostas

It is always tough when you are playing one man less for 90 minutes (OH JESUS KOLASINAC) but Nketiaballos bro’hood managed to bail us out of this collective fart of a game.

Lakshya

Cebanketiah?

Amusa

Absolutely crazy how Kolasinic can b a pro for so many years and his crosses still dont go past the first man. The drop in quality from Tierny was so evident.
I’d rather have Niles on the Left or Tony down the street who only has one leg but crosses better.

Anonymarse

Surely when he crosses he falls on the floor

Magneto

All that matters is that we won, collect the 3 points and now rest, recover and prepare for the next game.

Winning games when you don’t play well is a well established part of the game and is preferable to losing them.

Oregoon

Yes. Cliched maybe, but this is what good teams do.

Gunnerlocutor

I hate VAR. You can’t enjoy the goals properly when you have to wait for a possible VAR bummer. But good on the lads for scrapping out a win!

Public Elneny

It would be awesome if there were a purely technological way to determine an offside, a way that would be instant. I’m sure it’s not impossible – a specifically designed piece of software should be able to determine a toe, a shoulder, an arse from the other, right? And recognise the kit based on colour, and distance to the touchline. Why not? As for the subjective decisions that get referred to VAR, they just expose how stupid referees and other officials are. How they now have access to endless replays from multiple angles and somehow manage to make even more… Read more »

VAR was terribly slow in its 1st year in the German Bundesliga. It drastically improved in its 2nd as decisions were made a lot quicker. In my opinion, the real problem is the management of the technology. Mike Riley, the head of the PGMOL, at heart seems like the old school anti-tech type. This is not the kind of personnel you’d want overseeing a technological initiative but the EPL and FA have chosen to leave him in charge. What we now have with VAR are error-prone anti-tech match officials overseeing a digital system they are worried might replace them. From… Read more »

Pune Gooner

Phew…………

Paul

I love it when we have a streak going.

Anonymarse

Well there is a brown streak down the back of my pants now

Paul

With a name like that, what do you expect? ??

Biggles

Not convincing, but at least we got the points by grinding out the win. It shows that we’re still very much work in progress. We’ll get a better idea of how we’re really doing when we meet some of the top teams.

Matthinc

Yeah, does feel like a reality check after last week. And it’s not like West Ham shut up shop or anything, they just outplayed us.

The Swede

Outplayed? Oh come on. Most of their shots was completely harmless.

Fatgooner

Bloody awful performance, but a decent result.

An insipid, uninspired midfield was our major problem: we created almost nothing all night. It just shows that we’re still crying out for that quality creative midfielder.

West Ham were very unlucky to get nothing from the game: they were the better side in the second half. Holding badly at fault for their goal.

We need to up our game for Liverpool: if we play like tonight at Anfield we’ll get smashed.

Matthinc

I think the way Xhaka and Kolasinac retreated in front of the ball allowing that ball across the 6 yard box was more criminal.

Greg in Seattle

Not great, but I think I was more irritated by three defenders in the six yard box yet Antonio slides between them.

Matthinc

I had bad bad feelings about how this would end 60 minutes in, feeling so relieved now. We were non-existent down the right, such a shame Willian and Bellerin saw so little of the ball. Having to build through Kolasinac instead is a non-starter. He doesn’t have a clue what his role is.

loose_cannon

Excellent result but let’s be honest, that was a poor performance. West Ham seemed to figure us out and didn’t fall into the same traps Fulham did. We have to reassess when we’re going to play that way, with that formation, and when we will need more creativity in the middle of the park to knit things together for us.

Goonerrah

Thats why Tierney was key, he can actually pass a ball properly. Holding and Kola can’t do anything but pass backwards or knock it out.

loose_cannon

Kolasinic….I don’t want to be rude, but it’s got to the point where I’m really not sure why he’s still with us. He’s just not the right fit for what we want to do.

Timorous Me

I was watching and thinking that he’s the absolute last player Arteta would be going for if he were on the market. So it must be terribly frustrating to have to use him as cover for Tierney, knowing how wrong he is for how Arteta wants to play.

Jimbo

Not easy to watch but so many of these games ended in draws last season, good to see the lads clawing their way out of that habit. ‘….the team’s lack of creativity and presence between the lines was laid bare…’ – prime Ozil would be so useful. Let’s hope for creative midfield reinforcements… ooo arrr

Rummy

It’s happening this year. I feel it in me waters;

Yellow Ribbon

If the Arsenal board were able to see it.. we are desperately in need for an upgrade in the midfield.

Dani was wayward at times but kept driving us forward and tried to make things happen and it worked out.

Xhaka slows us down. Kolasinac should leave and we do need some creativity.

A win is a win. How many times was I wondering if the same old Arsenal that we are so used to now is back!

Cojones boys!

Phew.

Tim Sherwood's poor, poor wife

Tough day at the office but we’ll take it. This is the type of game that we would’ve drawn or lost under Emery

Gunner J

Good game, good three points. Need to improve next game. Any suggestions on where I can stream Arsenal games?

Jimbo

vipleague is excellent – or try reddit soccer streams 🙂

Jimbo

So I hear, anyway

Gunner J

Will give them a try. Thanks Jimbo!

Vino

To be honest i Kinda missed martinez.

Hail Gus!

Me too!

ArsenesLongSufferingZipper

I’ll take the 3 points.

aced

This one felt like a smash and grab. Fell back into the old ways of defending when opposition gets the ball, running back towards our goal instead of stepping up to challenge the attackers, giving
them way too much space to drive balls in. And Leno doesn’t help by flapping instead of catching.

Qutubkhan

This game is exactly why we need Aouar. We just need that person to carry the ball from midfield into the final third. Ceballos did that for the first time in the 80th odd minute and we ended up scoring.
Tierney was a massive miss today. I don’t think Fredericks would have gotten that cross in for their goal had he played today.
On a positive note though, this was a game we would have definitely drawn or lost in the past so getting the 3 points tonight was fantastic.

Qwaliteee

Well, we got off lightly there. Three points is three points, but the performance stank. Kolasinac is an absolute joke and the sooner we’re rid of him the better. More fool Arteta if he picks this idiot again; he’s an absolute disaster waiting to happen, just like Mustafi. I gave praise to Willian last week – and he thoroughly deserved it, but although he was poor tonight, I’m still going to reserve judgement on him. It’s still too early. That said, we looked done for in terms of creativity and I make no apologies for reiterating my point that Mesut… Read more »

But if the club gets rid of Kolasinac, will Özil still want to stay??

The Arsenal

Time for Kola to be moved on. Mr 45% pass completion since he’s been here has never been good enough. Tierney was a big miss.. Next time this happens play Luiz and Move Gabriel to Tierneys position. Think we need Partey AND Aouar in this window. But i really don’t know how with the lack of funds and lack of assets to sell. West ham always been a problem for us just with their pace and power advantage. As much as our midfield lacks I cannot fault their attitude and effort. Got through this game and alot last season through… Read more »

100% agree. Though these are decisions Arteta has made due to injuries (including Tierney tonight). I’m pretty sure Arteta would rather play Gabriel or Mari at LCB than Kolasinac but half the defence is on the hospital bed.

I started watching Arsenal in 2008-2009 and the same long term injuries in defence are still reoccurring. As I got older I just accepted it as normal for AFC.

Mr. Gordon. Phillips

Have we chosen the right goalkeeper?

ThreadRipper

Leno was never great at handling those dangerous crosses. That is one area Martinez was way better. Anyway, Martinez is gone and we now have Leno to depend on. Lets support him.

Vino

Crosses win matches. I swear everytime leno came for crosses i had a my heart in my mouth. Also his one pass was pretty right to xhaka when he had a player on his tail. He panics quickly.
Liverpool gonna be test for him.

Teryima Adi

On present form, Martinez is the best. That much was obvious.

The Swede

So we are already throwing shit at Leno? Grow up.

Vonnie

No.

Vino

I think everyone was off. The pressing wasn’t intense. Players seem tired.dnno why. The tracking back for 1st goal wasn’t great .
The passing was pretty erratic for best part of game. Laca played very feeble wayward passes.
Ceballos and the two passes from saka were the highlight.
Also leno dsnt deal with crosses well. Atleast now, after seeing “u know who” , dealt with crosses exceptionally.

Rick_Sanchez

A win is a win, nothing more, nothing less. But at the end of the day exactly what we needed. West Ham gave us a really good fight with some clever and strong pressing.

Isn’t this what a top team is made of? You can play shit, have a lucky bounce here and there, still you get the 3 points over the line.

But midfield was too slow today.

I was asking myself who we could use better, a Partey or Aouar?

Goonerrah

A win is a win when you are a Champion caliber team that has an off or unlucky day. We can’t just shrug our shoulders and say “good job, nothing to learn here”.

UpNorth

Agree that Kola was bad today, but our inability to break down compact defenses is not a Kola vs Tierney issue. You can break down this type of defense in two ways, either by individual skills or collective effort. ( the best teams combine). The first demands players who can pass with accuracy and players who can recieve those passes in tight spaces. The second way requires two things,speed of the passes and few touch on the ball. This will after some time crack open the defense normally on the flanks and open for passes behind the defensive line. Our… Read more »

Gunner J

Blogs. What’s up with the links to the goals? Can’t access them, or maybe it’s just me.

Gunner J

Blogs. What’s up with the links to the goals? I Can’t access them, or maybe it’s just me.

Tankard Gooner

Is there any word on the Tierney injury if they have some sort of early update? The post match arteta interview didn’t have anything on that. Hope it’s nothing too serious because watching Kola play sometimes isn’t good news for my health.

Matt P

Poor performance, but I believe in this team and the manager. Every team has it’s off day, and credit to the Hammers who played well. Our defence is obviously a work in progress, very shaky today.

Monkey knees

Not a good performance, at all… however, 3 points are 3 points. United had a shocker and folded against a “lesser” team, at home. We had the fight and desire to keep pushing, despite being so below par. Last year we would’ve lost this.

I don’t consider Palace a lesser side than West Ham in any way except for finances and individual personnel. West Ham were below par last season and barely survived relegation. They’ve beaten an inform Manchester City away from home

Ole likely just isn’t the right manager but the UTD fans won’t admit it because he’s a club legend.

Looney

Leno is poor aerially. His frame just doesn’t command that area.

SantaClausola

I think this game showed the importance of Tierney. He is solid and plays the left CB role or Left Wing Back really well. Kolasinac was pretty lost and didn’t know what to do for their goal.

We got lucky, we struggled to break them down at times but luckily Saka’s passes for both goals opened up their defence. 2/2 wins feels good!

Santori

Patchy game a bit disjointed with little fluency. Passing percentage for some our players poor today and we should still have plenty to do to retain the ball better or move it up field quicker. A bit of a reality check following the big first win of season. But both goals were well constructed when they came. Auba’s clip for Laca’s second of the season from the left as was with the winner eventually from Ceballos endeavors on left brilliantly found by Saka and then to tee up the predatory instincts of young Nketiah for a good first goal for… Read more »

Darkandbloody

First game I have been able to watch in its entirety and live since before Covid. We switched tv providers and I still haven’t got the sports thing sorted out.
I thought Saka was very interesting. He kept looking out of place to me, but he initiated both goals. Some guys don’t do much until they do everything
wanted to see Tierney play. the highlights are the exciting

good ugly win.

Will

Two things…

1 xhaka’s ball to saka foe the goal should be lauded for the piece of quiet brilliance it was.

2 his inability to realise that the west ham player should be taken out on half when at the start of the break was criminal for a professional midfielder. It may only be a second of hesitation which drives him to back of but if he takes the yellow we don’t even mention it!