Big Game Focus: West Ham v Arsenal

 

Two struggling city rivals meet tonight in the Premier League at the London Stadium. Both the Hammers and the Gunners are having disappointing seasons. The hosts have won once in ten matches while Arsenal haven’t won a game since late October. Therefore, there will be a lot of stakes in this clash. Here’s the Big Game Focus. Bet on the game here. 

Since that huge win over Manchester United in late September, West Ham lost six of their next nine matches, a run that has taken Manuel Pellegrini’s side just above the relegation zone. Pellegrini is under severe pressure at the club and is running out of time to turn things around. Last weekend’s win over Chelsea appears to have bought him some time, but that result looks an anomaly in a dismal run of four defeats in five games.

The Gunners are winless in their last nine games in all competitions, a run that saw Unai Emery sacked last month. However, Freddie Ljungberg’s appointment as interim head coach is yet to precipitate an upturn in fortunes. These are worrying times for the Gunners who are ten points off the top four.

Betting preview

West Ham have only lost one of their last four home matches against Arsenal, a 5-1 defeat in 2016. The Gunners have a dreadful away record in the Premier League. They have won just four of their 20 away games in the last 12 months. The last time these two met, the Hammers won 1-0. Therefore, you can back a Home Double Chance at odds of 1.75. 

Both teams have found the net in three of West Ham’s last five matches and four of Arsenal’s last five matches. The Gunners have kept just one clean sheet away from home this season while Pellegrini’s team have kept just two clean sheets at home this season. Arsenal are without a clean sheet in their last 11 matches in all competitions, since beating Bournemouth 1-0 on 6th October. For that reason, you can back Both Teams to Score at odds of 1.40. 

Arsenal have scored 21 goals in the Premier League this season and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has scored ten of them, which is 48%. The Gabon international has also scored six of Arsenal’s seven away goals in the league this season. You can back Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as Anytime Goalscorer at odds of 1.75. 

Team news

West Ham will assess Michail Antonio, who made his first start since August in the win against Chelsea but missed the midweek defeat at Wolves. This game might come too early for Jack Wilshere and Winston Reid while Manuel Lanzini and Lukasz Fabianski remain out.

Arsenal are observing Hector Bellerin's fitness after he made his comeback from injury against Brighton. Centre-back Rob Holding and midfielder Dani Ceballos remain out.

Possible line-ups

West Ham: Martin, Fredericks, Diop, Ogbonna, Masuaku, Rice, Noble, Anderson, Fornals, Yarmolenko, Antonio.

Arsenal: Leno, Chambers, Sokratis, Luiz, Tierney, Guendouzi, Torreira, Pepe, Ozil, Aubameyang, Lacazette.