By Josh James
Eddie Nketiah came off the bench to grab a late winner as we made it two wins out of two at the start of the season.
In truth we were below par for much of our opening home game of the campaign, despite taking the lead through Alexandre Lacazette's thumping header.
Lacazette's goal was actually our first attempt on goal after a fairly soporific opening 25 minutes. Angelo Ogbonna had actually gone closest to opening the scoring for the away side early on, but could only direct his tame header straight at Bernd Leno.
From then we struggled to turn our possession into chances, until Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang just about beat the offside trap before standing up an inviting cross for the arriving Lacazette to head home from six yards out.
It was the Frenchman's second goal in two games at the start of the season, and his 50th overall in an Arsenal shirt.
Bukaya Saka nearly added a second just afterwards, but blazed over from inside the area.
Just at the end of the half the Hammers hit back, springing a rapid counter-attack which ended with Michail Antonio sliding in from close range.
We needed to improve after the break, and although we continued to see plenty of the ball, the cutting edge was missing.
Leno got down well to keep about Antonio's bundled effort on the line and Gabriel sliced a clearance just wide as West Ham increased the pressure.
They continued to send in dangerous high crosses from the flanks and nearly got their reward when Antonio headed against the bar.
We were living dangerously but finally went ahead when Dani Ceballos got free in the area and cut the ball back for Nketiah - not long on the pitch as a sub - to convert from close range.
Two games, two wins to kick off 2020/21, but this one was far from straightforward.
HOW IT HAPPENED
WHAT IT MEANS
Mikel Arteta made three changes to the side that won at Craven Cottage last weekend. Bukaya Saka replaced Ainsley Maitland-Niles on the left, while Dani Ceballos came in for Mohamed Elneny in midfield. And shortly before kick-off, Kieran Tierney was forced out with a hip injury, so Sead Kolasinac came into the defence.
David Luiz was fit enough to take his place on the bench after recovering from a neck injury.
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette have now combined for 14 Arsenal goals in all competitions since February 2018.
Alexandre Lacazette scored his 50th Arsenal goal in his 129th appearance.
We have won 11 of our last 12 home games against West Ham United in all competitions, with the only exception being on the opening day of the 2015/16 Premier League season.
West Ham United have lost more Premier League matches against Arsenal (32) than versus any other opponent
We remain unbeaten at home in the Premier League in 2020.
We switch to Carabao Cup action in midweek when we travel to Leicester City for our third-round tie on Wednesday evening. The winners will take on either Liverpool or Lincoln City away in the fourth round. Liverpool, incidentally, are also our next opponents in the Premier League, next Monday (September 28) at Anfield.
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