James CookeWest Ham vs Arsenal, Saturday January 12th, 12:30, Emirates Stadium. Arsenal can close the gap on the Premier League top four when they make the short trip to the London Stadium to face mid-table West Ham United at lunchtime on Saturday.
Arsenal can close the gap on the Premier League top four when they make the short trip to the London Stadium to face mid-table West Ham United at lunchtime on Saturday.
Arsenal have started off the new calendar year in fine style, following up a 4-1 win over Fulham in the Premier League by safely negotiating a potential banana skin in Blackpool in the FA Cup Third Round.
The Gunners remain outside the Champions League qualification places but could move level on points with fourth-placed Chelsea if they secure their first league away win since November.
They will be confident that they can do so here having not lost on the road to West Ham in over 12 years.
The Hammers weren’t too troubled by Birmingham City in their own FA Cup tie last weekend as they won 2-0 at the London Stadium.
Manuel Pellegrini’s side are lodged in mid-table but three points could take them within touching distance of a potential Europa League-qualifying spot.
The betting sites believe Arsenal’s firepower should be enough to help them see off an inconsistent West Ham side, perhaps by a 3-1 scoreline.
Four of Arsenal’s last six meetings with West Ham United have seen them win by three or more goals. As well as that – due to injuries – the Gunners’ defence is in a mess at the moment, with the clean sheet against League One Blackpool their first in seven matches. The hosts will fancy their chances of piling on that defensive misery.
But West Ham are one of Arsenal’s favourite opponents (see head-to-head below). In addition, the Hammers have only beaten three struggling sides at home in the last three months and have come unstuck against Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspur and, most recently, Watford.
Head to Head
Unai Emery’s first competitive win as Arsenal boss came against West Ham back in August as the Gunners ran out 3-1 victors at the Emirates Stadium. The last time the two teams met at the London Stadium, in December 2017, it ended goalless. The Hammers have won only one of their last 23 fixtures against Arsenal – a 2-0 victory at the Emirates in August 2015. Their last home win came way back in November 2006, courtesy of a Marlon Harewood goal.
Arsenal defender Nacho Monreal has scored in the Gunners’ last two matches against West Ham United.
West Ham goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski has made 80 saves this season – more than any other Premier League stopper.
Only Watford’s Jose Holebas and Bournemouth’s Jefferson Lerma have picked up more yellow cards than Arsenal defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos this season.
West Ham’s players have made 407 tackles this season – a Premier League high.
Aspiring football journalist who realised he could put his vast knowledge towards gambling and making some money. With years spent on Football Manager, his boyhood obsession has carried over into his adult life and he's proven his mum that all that time spent playing a game wasn't to be wasted. A European football expert, James writes about anything on the continent and has began expanding his knowledge to other leagues in South America, Asia and the USA.