Post-Match Report

Match report: Arsenal 2-0 West Ham

Emile Smith Rowe celebrates scoring against West Ham

West Ham United -

Emirates Stadium
Premier League
Premier League
  Arsenal
      
                  Martinelli (48)
                   Smith Rowe (87)
            
   crest
Arsenal
Martinelli (48)
Smith Rowe (87)
2 0
  West Ham United
   crest
West Ham United

WHAT HAPPENED

We moved into the top four on Wednesday after goals from Gabriel Martinelli and Emile Smith Rowe wrapped up an impressive win against West Ham United.

Having cruised past Southampton last time out, it was no surprise to see Mikel Arteta name an unchanged side as we looked to build on the momentum we built up there.

We certainly came flying out of the blocks, the intensity shown the team only matched by that of the fans in a packed Emirates Stadium.

But in a first half of few clear-cut chances, we posed the more threat – although it was West Ham who first went close as Pablo Fornals bent one just past the post from the edge of the box.

Just before the interval though, as we sought to crank up the pressure, we pieced together a lovely flowing move involving Martin Odegaard and Bukayo Saka, before Granit Xhaka’s shot was blocked.

The ball was cleared to the edge of the Hammers’ area, and Kieran Tierney took aim with a stunning strike that Lukasz Fabianski pushed on to the bar and over.

Moments later Alex Lacazette forced the former Gunner into action once more with a curling effort, but the breakthrough just wouldn’t come as the goalkeeper saved smartly.

After the restart, we stayed on the front foot and took the lead when the influential Lacazette played in Martinelli behind the backline and he curled the ball into the far corner.

It was some finish – and the crowd loved every second of it.

West Ham soon came back at us, with Aaron Ramsdale forced into a smart save from Jarrod Bowen just a few short minutes later, but it was only fleeting as we continued to control the tempo of the game.

We were handed a golden chance to extend our lead when Lacazette was taken down in the area by Vladimir Coufal – a challenge that led to the defender’s red card for a second bookable offence – but our striker’s resulting penalty was saved.

It made for a slightly nervier finale than perhaps our overall performance deserved.

Gabriel hooked a half chance wide, Saka saw a shot blocked on the line and then Smith Rowe called Fabianski into action as we kept the pressure on.

We finally removed any doubt about who would take the three points when Saka raced upfield and found Smith Rowe, and the England international arrowed a shot into the bottom corner.

It sealed a fine evening’s work in N5 as we moved into fourth spot.

WHAT IT MEANS


WHAT’S NEXT

 

We’re back in action on Saturday evening, to take on Leeds United in our last Premier League game before Christmas – although we do have a Carabao Cup quarter-final against Sunderland to look forward to next Tuesday.

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