AFC vs West Ham, a game to win

We have a big opportunity to dent the Top 4 hopes of a direct opponent in that Top 4 race, namely West Ham. West Ham is a well drilled machine under Moyes and they have both exciting and solid players in Antonio, Rice, Soucek, Zouma, Bowen, Coufal…and our former GK Fabiansky is having a great season…

We know how West Ham plays and I am hoping that somehow Arteta will come up with a way to neutralize Rice, Soucek and Antonio. Rice is having a great season so far too and I think he will be snapped up by a big club in the summer – ideally us 😛

So here is the predicted line-up:

Ramsdale – Tomy, White, Gabs, Tierney – Partey, Xhaka – Sake, Odegaard, Martinelli – Laca

ESR may start on the bench or replace Martinelli in the line up…

Given the current Captaincy saga, it ll be interesting to see who gets the armband but I think that Laca will get it and that is why I think he will start.

Apparently, we have been hard to break in the first 40 minutes at home so far this season. Let us keep it like that and ideally until the end of the game. It will be important not to give too much space for long shots to Rice and also to monitor closely Soucek runs into the box.

If it were up to me, maybe I would even play Lokonga-AMN today ahead of Xhaka just to neutralize Soucek and Rice….

Anyways, let us hope for a Home Win and Allez les Gunners!

Predicted score: 2-1 for us. Most likely result: draw.

12 Responses to AFC vs West Ham, a game to win

  1. RC78 says:

    My preferred line-up in the end:

    Ramsdale – Tomy, White, Gabs, Tierney – Lokonga, AMN – Saka, ESR, Martinelli – Laca

    I feel bad dropping Ode who is in good form but I like ESR better.

  2. LB says:

    I am of the current mind that ESR is better at playing a tad further forward than Odegaard but therefore, and importantly, Odegaard is better at playing just that little bit further back.

    We are going to need a Tottenham performance to win this one, should be interesting though.

  3. RC78 says:

    Line up:
    Ramsdale – Tomy, White, Gabs, Tierney – Partey, Xhaka – Saka, Ode, Martinelli – Laca

    At least, we know who is playing now even before the line up is announced 😛

  4. RC78 says:

    and Laca captains the side…

  5. RC78 says:

    Ramsdale – 6
    Tomy – 6
    Ben – 6
    Gabs – 7
    Tierney – 6
    Partey – 5.5
    Xhaka – 5.5
    Saka – 7
    Ode – 5.5
    Martinelli – 7.5
    Laca – 6

    ESR – 6.5
    Nketiah – 5.5

    A decent win. Could have won with a larger margin really. Laca should not have taken the penalty. Martinelli ws outstandhing during 65 minutes and Saka was really good as well. Still worried about Xhaka-Partey but overall, a deserved win and two well taken goals by Martinelli and ESR. COYG!

  6. LB says:

    Great win, very happy.

    I had Saka slightly ahead of Martinelli but I suppose as the saying goes: goals make the difference.

  7. fatgingergooner says:

    Such a shame we lost those first 3 games of the season. Since then the table has looked like this….

    Man City P14 Pts 35
    Liverpool P13 Pts 30
    Chelsea P13 Pts 29
    Arsenal P14 Pts 29

    We’ve kept 8 clean sheets in our last 14 PL games. It’s fair to say we haven’t got the balance right yet with our goals record being what it is (not helped by Auba suddenly showing his age) but there is no denying that the defence has been improved and our record against teams outside the top 6 is starting to get back to something like it was under Wenger when we were qualifying every year for the CL. We must get back to being a side that beats the bottom 14 teams on a regular basis before we can even think about looking upwards.

    It’s small steps under Arteta and it’s slower than some would like, but the progress is there if you want to look for it. It may not be pretty to watch at times, but I’d much rather we take time to get a solid defensive foundation in place that we can then build a more attractive game around, rather than doing what we have for the last 15 or so years which is to put style over substance by throwing money at attackers whilst having sub-standard defenders/attitude to defending.

    Good result and up to 4th. The Emirates starting to become a bit of a fortress. What’s not to like? 🤷‍♂️

  8. Aaron says:

    Solid win, clean sheet, deservedly so.

    Really enjoyed the teams intensity the first 25 minutes, yet we still did not have a real clear chance on goal. The shot by opposition that curled by was best chance of the game by 35 minutes.

    Laca huffed and puffed, but is was Martinelli’s run straight at goal, Mikel are you paying attention, that made a difference.

    Neutralized Antonio very well, and thought the red card for Coufal was harsh, and well, Laca telegraphed it and that was that.

    ESR comes on, we counter, quickly, Saka plays ESR forward and ESR drives straight to the box, and there you go.

    Do not believe those 2 goals are the work of Arteta at all, in fact he has been holding those kids back, but whatever, he forced his hand with Auba, and the youth did what their natural talents allowed them to do.

    AFC have an excellent record at home, which is what a team needs to finish in top quartile, can Arteta do it on the road?

    We shall see, if Covid allows it to happen…

  9. fatgingergooner says:

    So it’s all natural talent when our flourishing young attackers score and create goals (despite Arteta’s interference), but it’s all Arteta’s fault if we concede goals.

    Starting to get the impression you’re not a huge fan of Arteta…

  10. LB says:

    Aaron, you have hit upon a very interesting topic of conversation.

    Were last night’s goals coached?

    The second is easy and I think most people would agree that Smith Rowe simply showed a moment of brilliance to shoot through the legs of the defender finding the corner, leaving Fabiansky flat footed.

    But I have spent all morning purring about how the first came straight off the training ground and the key to this is Lacazette, this is what changed last night. Watch where he is when he gets the ball, this is the cue for Martinelli to start his run.

    This well rehearsed sequence purposely happened a handful of times, in fact you can follow it further back, that goal is a move that is practised all the way from Ramsdale to the defender to Lacazette to Martinelli.

    It was impressive I find it difficult to understand how other Arsenal supporters didn’t notice it

  11. LB says:

    Conversation between Edu and Arteta.

    Arteta: I have got a problem with Auba, he is slowing down, he is missing sitters but I don’t know what to do, he is the club captain so I can’t really leave him on the bench; he has asked to take a trip what do you think I should do?

    Edu: let him go, you know he always arrives back late, when he does take the captaincy away from him, sit him on the bench and start playing more Brazilian football.

    Arteta: Brazilian football?

    Edu: Martinelli of course.

    Arteta: do you think it will work.

    Edu: Yes, Auba will fall into the trap as I said he is alway late.

  12. RC78 says:

    New post people

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