Arsenal: Ramsdale, White, Saliba Gabriel, Tierney, Partey, Xhaka, Odegaard, Martinelli, Saka, Nketiah
Subs: Turner, Cedric, Zinchenko, Holding, Elneny, Lokonga, Vieira, Marquinhos, Cozier-Duberry
Arsenal picked up where they left off before the World Cup break, coming from behind to beat West Ham 3-1 at the Emirates this evening.
The Gunners had the ball in the net in the 5th minute, Bukayo Saka rifling beyond Lukasz Fabianski, however the goal was ruled out for offside. First replays made it look like the goal should stand, but Martin Odegaard’s through ball hit Saka on the way to Eddie Nketiah and the offside decision was correct.
Jarrod Bowen picked up an 8th minute booking for a foul on Martinelli, Xhaka had a pop which was easy for Fabianski, and it was as if the players were feeling their way back into action after the World Cup break.
Some of that rustiness was evident in Arsenal’s defending when William Saliba failed to deal with a bouncing ball, then slid in on Bowen to give the Hammers a penalty. Said Benrahma made no mistake from the spot to make it 0-1.
Arsenal found it tough going against opposition who sat deep and looked to counter. There were moments of pressure as we played most of the game in their half, but very little in the way of clear cut chances.
As the first half entered the final minute of injury time, it looked as if we’d have a chance to level from the spot, when it appeared as if Aaron Creswell handled an Odegaard shot. Michael Oliver pointed for the penalty, but the decision was overturned after replays showed the ball hit the West Ham man in the head.
There was early danger in the second half when Antonio got in behind to force a save from Ramsdale, but belatedly the offside flag went up. Partey forced Fabianski into a save moments later, and in the 53rd minute Arsenal were level. Odegaard took a shot, miscued it, and it turned into a great pass for Saka who was played onside by Coufal. He slotted into the bottom corner. 1-1
5 minutes later, the reds were ahead. Arsenal kept possession and worked it nicely through midfield, Xhaka played it to Martinelli whose shot from a tight angle beat Fabianski at his near post. 2-1.
The goal led to a rigorous rendition of “One Arsene Wenger!”, to salute the former boss who was back at the Emirates for the first time since his departure in 2018.
In the 68th minute, the Gunners struck again. Again, good build-up around the box, a lovely touch from Ben White saw him feed Nketiah, who span the defender and finished low into the bottom corner. 3-1.
Mikel Arteta then made his first change, bringing on Oleksandr Zinchenko for Tierney, as Xhaka got lucky to avoid a yellow for a foul on Antonio. Odegaard curled a shot wide, Martinelli could have played in Saka but overhit his cross, and the captain again had a sight of goal but missed the target.
Saka created for Odegaard again but this time his shot was headed clear, Fabio Vieira came on to replace Martinelli in the 88th minute, and again chants rang out for Arsene Wenger as the game came to a close and our lead at the top of the table was extended.
I had my Christmas dinner with all my old school friends last night. A lot of football heads in there. Two Chelsea, two Liverpool and an Aston Villa season ticket holder who all watch a lot of football. And all I got all night was “Yeah, you lot look alright. Bet you fade away” or “Yeah, we’ll see about you. Early days”. I kept quiet, nodded, didn’t say much, but inside I was thinking “What the fuck are you watching?!” Name me a side that are doing what we are doing (swatting away extremely competent and well drilled premier league… Read more »
Our run gives the same vibe as Leister’s winning year. Everyone doubting us but we keep winning them and in a more convincing way. If we get reinforcements this could be our year!
Its was clear 4-1, the 4th min goal was on side! But there’s nothing Michael Oliver can do to harm us tonight because the boys were just brilliant.
No, it was clearly offside. The through ball to Eddie touched Saka’s ankle, and Saka was in an offside position when the ball was played forward. If Saka had avoided touching it, then the goal would have stood.
Correct – Saka just needed to ‘dummy’ it through to Eddie and goal woulda stood. But Spud of the moment stuff so he can be excused (see what I did there?).
If he dummied it though wouldn’t it still be offside? Like when you gain an advantage by blocking the goalie’s view? I mean it doesn’t matter now but now you mention it I’m interested
It wouldn’t have been offside because Saka wasn’t in an offside position when Odegaard played the ball to him. By touching it, Saka caused Eddie’s position to matter. Eddie was behind the last defender Kehrer when Saka touched it so he was offside. If Saka let it go through untouched, Eddie would not have been offside because he was played onside by Dawson when Odegaard passed it.
He gave it a good go though, Oliver Twist.
Great post, J4H. In answer to your question, I think people (those of another persuasion) are now genuinely in denial and/or afraid of us. Thierry Henry mentioned as much in his role tonight as pundit and common sense talker amidst the wittering of Scot Parker and Gabby Logan. Supporters of other clubs aren’t just ‘seeing how we do’ – they are PRAYING for an Arsenal collapse, no two ways about it. And I’ve got a feeling that we are just getting our eye in; the sky truly is the limit for these kids of ours, they have no ceiling. Like… Read more »
Yeah I’m so confused about the narrative around us. The commentator on some stream I was on (astro sport I think), was saying some thing like “title race talk is premature. If they are in a similar position when there’s 10 games left then MAYBE you can talk about it”.
After 15 games, we are 1st in the league, with a 7th point gap to the team in 2nd and we’ve played a game less. If we are not in a title race then who the fuck is?
40points so safe from relegation 😂😂😂
A very necessary win tonight.we kick on now like we never left off.I felt very emotional when the camera showed Gabriel Jesus looking on, anxiously.I’m very happy.
A thus-far under the radar storyline that’s quietly playing out here is the Toon’s putting pressure on Citeh… been snapping at their heels for the past 3 matches and have now pushed them into 3rd.
You can’t underestimate the weight of that added pressure… all grist to the mill in making every one of their games a ‘must win’.
God I’m loving this!
Good second half! Ødegaard was immense today, finished it off with a nice little spin at the end there. COYG!
You could just put the camera on him for 90mins he’s a joy to watch (€30 million 😊) Ben white was fantastic tonight also
If Super Mik can do the same with the unwanted Atleti lad as he’s done with Real’s ‘reject’… bring on Joao for 8m!!
A real captains performance today!
That nutmeg of Paqueta at the end
odegaard is everything i wanted ozil to be
He’s a clone of 30% Özil (vision), 30% Cesc (creativity) and 30% Rosicky (tenacity) and 10% Bergkamp (top corner shots). The perfect midfielder! 💪❤
We’ll done, Nketiah!!
I knew you’d come good!!!
His taxi at the airport finally arrived and he scored on his first night at the 18-30 club.
Yeah I will pretend I never heard that lol
Pass the smelling salts!!
Eddie is not the finished article… yet – that 3rd was a thing of poetry but he’s still a little selfish and knee-jerk at key moments. Having said that, the goal – and the manner of it – will do him a power of good.
The defence is like if you fed footage of David Luiz and Mustafi bloopers into an AI computer and said “show me the opposite of this”
3 very big points! The highlight for me is Arsene in the stands. So happy to see him back
i kinda think Mikel will be the next Arsene in terms of managerial genius
I was so happy to see Wenger. I practically screamed when I saw him. Even happier to see his first game back at the Emirates ended with such gloss
Arteta Out!! I can’t stand this much winning! 😅
You negatives are missing it. Kse has a real chance to pick up three big league trophies this year. Unbelievable success.
Which game were you watching?For me he was hiding all game long except right up towards the end
Have to say, he didn’t put a foot wrong.
Rusty start (which I expected) and from there on it was rather smooth sailing.
Let’s get going again! COYG!
PS: Good to have Arsene back! I don’t want to get carried away, but this seems like a good sign from the football gods.
And I just wanted to say: It feels so good to be back. Take care everyone!
It was nice to see the old git finally turn up at the stadium he built. A good performance and win was perfect for the occasion. It looks like he enjoyed it.
Now let’s hope he finally turns up to see a massive statue of himself unveiled outside the stadium to go with with those of Adams, Henry and Bergkamp.
He very much deserves it.
Perfect, as long as they save enough bronze for Wrighty’s too! 😉
I’d have paid good money to have an ear on Le Prof’s chat with Mik post game…
i have never seen Ian play on the account of being too young, but i’d imagine Eddie’s performance today wasn’t too far off from what i’d see if i had the chance. kudos to the lad!
Having had the privilege of watching him from the North Bank on a number of occasions, I can tell you that he would have been absolutely purring in the studio after Eddie’s hip-roll and finish.
On another note… I’d forgotten what an utter Arse-hating, biased cunt Ekoku is! He simply cannot bring himself to note anything decent about Arsenal’s play without prefacing it with how poor WH were. Total twunt.
First goal “incredibly lucky” … sec goa l “keeper error”” … third goal “schoolboy defending”” … he is a right twat Effin this and effin that …
Immense game. In typical Wenger fashion we had to concede first but what a response. Tierney was solid. Saliba shaky but gutsy. Saka was stirling. Martinelli electric. Odegaard, wow. Ben White, never in doubt. Nketiah is seriously giving me Wiltord 2002 vibes, buzzing for him. Chips in with goals and performances when given a chance. COYG.
the team wanted to help at feel at home
Whether that was a foul by Saliba or not doesn’t matter because it was definitely a goal each by Saka, Martinelli and Nketiah. Very nice goals too.
Ladies and gentlemen, we sit ten points clear of the spuds with one game in hand. COYG!
Brace yourselves, St. Totteringham is coming soon.
Here’s to making it an early one this time!
Normal service resumes. An Odegaard masterclass. Welcome back home, Arsene. COYG!!!!
Missed you all, players and fans alike ❤️
Why waste goals against Juventus and Luton when you can score them against West Ham where it really matters?
I am happy for Nketiah: confidence boosting goal there.
Ødegaard will lead this team to trophies; how Madrid must be kicking themselves for the paltry sum they got for him.
I’d say for letting him go. The guy is a midfield maestro.
Especially knowing how old both Modric and Kroos are.
Was the attractive lady next to AW his wife?
the true gap in quality between top of table teams and bottom teams is rarely so clearly on display. My word that was just wonderful to watch.
did rice fall at arteta’s feet afterwards and beg to be signed by arsenal?
merry Christmas all.
Maybe he did but no place for him in our midfield…
Smells like team spirit
One game less ,yasssss. We are getting into that stage where it’s one game at a time, one win at a time
Arsene in the house tonight.
Ben white is such a good player! We played really well and didn’t panic just stuck to the game plan. Credit to the manager as well. I think we could seriously go on to win this league if we bring in one or two really good players.
Odegaard was literally waltzing through that midfield doing whatever he wanted. He being in the mood is surely terrifying for opponents.
I remember during our only loss this season that he was dictating things in midfield and was being immense but unfortunately we misfired up front many times and the f*****s caught us on counters. He must be reeling because of that, along with all the boys and I for one can’t wait to see our revenge!
He will have to be prepared for Potter’s boys doubling up on him. Hopefully that will create space for our other geniuses.
He appears to know how to dance through the tight spaces. He just dances through.
Thinking about it now, that’s where Saka’s unlock powers also helps. I don’t think there is a set up that can shut out both at ot once.
Great to see the Gunners Christmas win and Arsene with Annie in the audience . Keep on winning 🥇
Are you related. ? You’re a ringer.
Love child ??
Weaver started well in many games but it’s nice seeing a comeback. This team mentality is on a different level. They just keep playing trusting that at some point the goal will come. P.S Mudryk posting that he’s watching, the guy really wants to be here. I like that.
Apologies for leaving this one so late, but both Mrs Q and I stayed late at the Tollington and were chauffeured home by one of my daughters. The party continued back at the house, it’s 3.30 and I am just about to go to bed. Wow it’s good to be back! After a first half of what was fast becoming One Of THOSE Nights and a game of Anti Arsenal Bingo (Perfectly good goal disallowed, they get an undeserved penalty, Moyes applauding Michael Oliver, etc) we came out after the break and let those bastards in claret and blue fucking… Read more »
Eddie’s name should not always be compared to Jesus because they are entirely different players and both contribute positively in entirely different ways. I like Eddie alot and iam sure he will score alot of goals for us (maybe even morethan what Jesus could have scored if still in the team)
We’re staying up
My girlfriend caught me waving at the television during the match. Had to admit I was waving to Arsene Wenger 😬. Now she’s worried about me .
I flippin’ welled-up when I saw him on the screen.