Well that wasn’t much fun at all. These kinds of games are the hardest to write about because the negatives cloud over the positives I could elaborate on. However, a win is a win and that victory yesterday gives Arsenal 6 points from 2 games and keeps them in the mix just before some of the tougher fixtures coming up in the next few weeks.
The performance was disjointed and West Ham threatened at times to take all three points but fortunately we managed to dig in and find a winner when all hope seemed lost. Manchester United were beaten convincingly by Crystal Palace in the premiership game prior the Emirates fixture and it served as a warning that anyone can beat anyone on their day.
West Ham will feel hard done by to leave the Emirates with nothing as they refused to roll over and let Arsenal have their cake and eat it. Even after Arsenal had taken the lead through Lacazette the warning signs were there as a number of chances fell to the Hammers. You wouldn’t be wrong to agree the equaliser was coming and well deserved before half time.
Never nice to concede before half time but it still allowed Mikel Arteta to assess and review tactics for a changed 2nd half. It didn’t seem like much had changed in 2nd half other than a greater amount of possession for the Gunners but the chances were still falling to both sides and almost like a very dull game of chess there was a chance for either team to walk away with victory in the blink of an eye.
Our winning moment did eventually come and if there was a story to take from this game it was noting the two individuals who combined to provide the winner. Dani Ceballos laid on the assist for Eddie Nketiah to slot home the winner; these two individuals were nearly the cause of a much more significant headline with their pre-game altercation before the Fulham game last week. This time it was a more positive exchange between the two and one that benefitted the club in the best possible way.
The Sky Sports team couldn’t resist bringing up the Fulham incident in the post-game interview with Eddie who squashed any hint of anything lingering last week as he highlighted all is well with his Spanish team mate.
One thing of note from the game was the potential penalty that could have been conceded by Gabriel. It would have been a harsh penalty if given, it wasn’t given, VAR reviewed and also didn’t give it so we move on. The Sky Sports team were desperate to forcefully push it as some sort of controversy and quite desperately tried to draw parallels with the penalty conceded by Lindelof against Palace an hour earlier. The two were nothing alike and it shouldn’t really be anything deemed significant enough for West Ham to cry foul.
Gabriel carried on where he left from the Fulham game looking assured and composed whilst indulging in the physical battles with gusto. He had to do it all with a new partner in defence due to the pre match warm up injury to Kieran Tierney. The Scotsman has become a favourite with the fans for his professionalism and quality in defence so the news of an injury is one of worry and the hope is the injury was more precaution than anything too serious. The early indications are it being a hip injury, something he has previous with, how long to recover from I guess we will have to wait until official confirmation from the club after diagnosis.
We especially need the quality of Tierney over the next few weeks as the tough games come thick and fast. We face Leicester in league and cup, Manchester City, Liverpool and Manchester United up until the end of October. It will require as many fit bodies available and ready to battle to come through that run of games and not have the feeling of our season being derailed.
Let’s see how it all plays out, fingers crossed starting Wednesday at the King Power Stadium.
Enjoy you day people.
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