Arsenal 5 – 1 West Ham United, this is the Arsenal we know and love! by KJ
What a win to get things back on track. I had my doubts after seeing the starting line-up. It looked very offensive and potentially dangerous but also had a soft underbelly. My fears were compounded when we conceded but we fought back valiantly and got the deserved win.
The game started off quite strongly for Arsenal. We generally start matches quite terribly and Wenger even brought up his concerns in a recent press conference. Obviously the players felt they had something to prove. We were dangerous and the passing looked crisp. Unfortunately, we just couldn’t find the breakthrough in the first 20 minutes. What happened next was typical Arsenal.
We were defending a corner (pretty well I might add) and out of nowhere we are 1 – 0 down. I was in shock as was most of the stadium. We were so dominant and yet found ourselves a goal down. It was actually not really down to our bad defending but more down to a wonder strike by Jack Collison (who will probably never score a goal like that again). 0-1.
The German Lukas Podolski however put us right back in it with an equally good strike at the other end. It was a very good dink by Wilshere around the midfield area that two players out of the game. Podolski was free to either take a shot or make a pass and he made the right decision. It was a thunderous strike. 1-1.
We started the second half equally as good as the first. But what happened in the next 10 minutes, no one could predict. Theo takes the corner and Giroud runs around the congestion in the box to score a near post goal. It was clearly a worked on routine that came into fruition against the Hammers. 2-1. Podolski had to get in on the action and unselfishly gave Cazorla the pass who then proceeded to walk the ball into the back of the net. 3-1. It was Podolski again who had completely stretched West Ham’s back line and he placed a beautifully weighted pass in Walcott’s path who coolly dispatched the goal. 4-1. Podolski wasn’t done assisting and managed to get Giroud a goal with a lovely cut back and a tap in by the Frenchman. 5 – 1.
After the hectic 10 minutes, things did calm down as there was no real onus on Arsenal to overstretch themselves for the sake of a goal with important matches coming up. Unluckily Dan Potts had to be taken off after being knocked unconscious by an accidental clash of heads with an Arsenal player. Arsenal played the remainder of the game a man up and made some glorious chances but we didn’t really overcommit when attacking and hence didn’t really take advantage of the extra man.
All in all it was a really good performance by the Gunners which should give them confidence for a difficult away game against Brighton in the FA cup.