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West Ham v Arsenal: the team, the returnees, the beach, the past, the future

by Bulldog Drummond

Today is the 11th anniversary of the launch of the Untold Arsenal site Our first ever article published on 14th, concerned the match against Birmingham on 12 Jan 2008, and focussed on rotational fouling which was unpunished by the referee.


 

There’s no real consensus on who is going to play but here’s one rough possibility

Leno

Mustafi Sokratis Koscielny

Bellerin Torreira Xhaka Monreal

Iwobi Aubameyang

Lacazette

That would leave on the beach

Cech, Lichtsteiner or Kolasinac, Özil, Maitland-Niles, Guendouzi, Ramsey, Smith Rowe or Nketiah

The other options are to play Kolasinac from the start to upset a defence that leaks goals and also Özil who could well find himself in lots of space.

There are of course a number of extra reasons for looking for a solid win here, apart from the fact that of course we want Arsenal to win.

First, if Manchester United keep winning then the situation a few weeks back of thinking we might break into the top four is turned around and we are looking at slipping down to sixth.

Second, although the bloggettas are ignoring the implications of it totally there is a clear statement from the manager that we don’t have the money to buy anyone this transfer window, and so although some loan activity is possible the team we have is the team we have to play with.

Third we have a game against Chelsea coming up, and we need some momentum to go into that.

Fourth, although no one else considers this theme, the fact remains that if we could maintain last season’s home form (as we are close to doing) while returning to our normal away form we will be playing at the level that takes us into the top four as a regular feature.   That won’t be enough to get us past Bayern or Barcelona in the knock out stages of the Champions League, but at least gets us the money of the Champions League.

And this is where the owner’s approach to finance is so silly.   Managers who endlessly buy and buy, saying, just one more purchase and I will have this team right, are ten a penny.   But in this case, that little extra push to the top four (which is not a trophy) would actually bring in not a trophy, but the money to secure future top four finishes through more transfers.

It is of course true that we do have a superb squad of youngsters coming up, and Mr Wenger did make some interesting buys near the end – Mavropanos is one that we will hopefully see soon, although not today I think.

But here is a nice warm thought to wend us on our way, Aubamayang has scored six goals and got two assists in four London league derbies.

And a final collection of oddities before we simply wait in the rain…

West Ham United have lost 29 Premier League games against Arsenal.  No other side has beaten West Ham more often. Not that it is hard most of the time, but still, it’s nice to know.

The goals will almost certainly come in the second half, so arriving late doesn’t really matter.   In fact 88% of the last 17 in this fixture have come in the second half.  This is helped by the fact that West Ham always let in goals in PL games at the amusingly titled London Stadium (properly known as the Tax Payers Stadium).  To be more exact, they have let in one or more in each of the last eight.  And add to this the fact that we always score.   Or at least we have in the last 20 in the League.

But here is a negative that Sky have come up with.

“Arsenal manager Unai Emery has never won away from home against Manuel Pellegrini in all competitions during his managerial career (P6 W0 D2 L4).”

Hmmm.  Something has to give.

Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Liverpool 21 17 3 1 49 10 39 54
2 Manchester City 21 16 2 3 56 17 39 50
3 Tottenham Hotspur 21 16 0 5 46 21 25 48
4 Chelsea 21 13 5 3 38 16 22 44
5 Arsenal 21 12 5 4 46 31 15 41
6 Manchester United 21 11 5 5 43 32 11 38
7 Leicester City 21 9 4 8 25 23 2 31
8 Watford 21 8 5 8 30 31 -1 29
9 Wolverhampton Wanderers 21 8 5 8 23 25 -2 29
10 West Ham United 21 8 4 9 29 32 -3 28

The State Aid Club v Arsenal…

3 comments to West Ham v Arsenal: the team, the returnees, the beach, the past, the future

  • Predictions wrong once again. It was ever thus.

    Bernd Leno

    Shkodran Mustafi
    Laurent Koscielny
    Sokratis
    Ainsley Maitland-Niles

    Matteo Guendouzi
    Granit Xhaka
    Sead Kolasinac

    Alexandre Lacazette
    Alex Iwobi
    Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

  • Menace

    Predictions of team selection may be wrong but the PGMOL never fail to cheat!!

  • WalterBroeckx

    live match report is on line