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Arsenal vs West Ham – Match Preview

 

Another Premier League weekend and another London derby, this time the venue is the Emirates as hosts Arsenal welcome the visit of West Ham and it is fair to say that there is already a lot riding on this fixture.

Both teams come into this clash having failed to earn a single point after each suffering two defeats in as many league matches. Not only that, but with Arsenal and West Ham also appointing new managers over the course of the Summer the pressure is on them to get off the mark.

For Arsenal, the appointment of Unai Emery has meant that the former Sevilla and PSG manager is attempting to fill the shoes that legendary Gunners boss Arsene Wenger has left behind after finally calling time on his tenure in North London.

It has not got off to the best of starts for the new Arsenal manager, but at the same time that does come with the strong caveat that they have had two of if not the hardest fixtures to deal with so far this season.

An opening weekend home loss to Manchester City was failed to be added to last Saturday when they made the short trip to Stamford Bridge and eventually ended up losing to Chelsea in a frenetic five-goal thriller.

That said had there finishing been better in the first half then the game would have been out of sight and they would have been off the mark at the expense at a new look Blues side that is being led this season by former Napoli boss Maurizio Sarri.

For West Ham, there opening weekend defeat to Liverpool although comprehensive was not necessarily the game to judge all the new additions that have moved to East London over the course of the Summer.

The real acid test was always going to be their home fixture with Bournemouth last Saturday, one that saw them take the lead from the penalty spot through Marko Arnautovic only to then see Eddie Howe’s men turn the tables and eventually take all three points.

This has heaped a small amount of pressure on their new man in charge Manuel Pellegrini, not necessarily because of the lack of points so far but more perhaps because of their large expenditure during the transfer window.

The names that have been signed are ones that will have no doubt bought excitement to West Ham fans, but there is the underlying fact that a large amount of them do not actually have any previous Premier League experience.

This means the team is going to take time to mould into a cohesive unit, but the one thing you no longer get in the Premier League is time. Should the Hammers suffer a third straight defeat this weekend it will only crank up the pressure further.

Arsenal may have been second best in the last couple of weeks, but there have been some positives to take from defeat and it is those that they can build on come Saturday. So much so that they will open their season account with a much needed home win.