Arsene Wenger has watched from the north London stands for the first time since leaving the club in 2018 after 22 years as Gunners manager, as table-top Arsenal moved from 15 games to 40 points this season.
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Second-half goals from Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Martinelli and Eddie Nketiah canceled out a first-half penalty by Saeed Ben-Rama and put Arsenal seven points behind second-placed Newcastle United.
“We were very dominant today. We didn’t have enough passes at the end,” said Nketiah. “But we kept pushing forward, and once we got one, we knew we could get more because we could feel the vibe behind us.
“We have a real sense of unity and connection with our fans and we want to develop that even further.”
Arsenal had a lively 20 minutes into the game, but after William Saliba fouled Jarrod Bowen in the area, Ben Rahma shot from the spot and West took the first penalty kick. It was ham.
Mikel Arteta’s side spent most of the remainder of the first half in West Ham’s defensive third, displaying a number of neat one-touch passes but were unable to equalize and went into the break 1-0. .
Arsenal gave their team the lead before the hour mark, with Saka working out a missed shot by Martin Audegaard, rolling home past Lukasz Fabianski, and Martinelli hitting a tight-angle blast to the near post.
Nketiah scored his third goal for Arsenal, capping off a superb Arsenal team move. After Odegaard picked him inside the area, he turned deftly to the left and found the back of the net with Fabianski’s fur at his post to secure a point with his 20 minutes remaining.
Arsenal were playing their first game since the season was suspended for the World Cup. He was also playing his first game since key striker Gabriel Jesus was sidelined for three months with a knee injury while playing for the Brazilian national team in Qatar.
Fears that Arsenal could derail their first title bid since 2004 were heightened when they found themselves trailing at half-time, but a domineering second half put those concerns at bay. has been wiped out.
West Ham, who have not won a league game away from home since August, managed to keep Mikel Arteta’s side out of the area in the first half, but Arsenal were aided by excellent serve and found a groove after half-time. Defense collapsed. from Odegard.
After maintaining a 100% record at home this season, Arsenal next travel to Brighton & Hove Albion on New Year’s Eve before David Moyes and West Ham host Brentford on 30 December.