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Premier League 2018/19: How Arsenal should line up against West Ham at the Emirates

Harsh Pillai
ANALYST
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2.06K   //    24 Aug 2018, 11:46 IST

Chelsea v Arsenal - Premier League
Arsenal have had a tough start to their Premier League campaign

It has been a difficult start for the Gunners in the Premier League, with back-to-back defeats against Manchester City and Chelsea in their opening games of the 2018/19 season. Although one can claim that Arsenal still had a better chance to win both the games, the scorelines for both say otherwise.

A defeat against the best club in England is not something to be ashamed of for the Gunners, considering the fact that they have a new head coach who is trying to bring in different tactics into their play.

Pep Guardiola's City produces some world class pressing, which relies heavily on the fact that this is his third year with Manchester City and his tactics have been well integrated into their playing style.

Comparing the developing Arsenal to Guardiola's well-oiled machine may not be the wisest thing to do at the moment.

However, Arsenal do need to ameliorate their game in order to stay in contention for the top four, as Manchester City, Chelsea, Liverpool and Tottenham have already clinched six points from their first two games. Manchester United are at three points, while Arsenal have still not opened their account this season.

Squad and improvements

There was no outright stand-out performance from any Arsenal player in both the games. However, you can say that Matteo Guendouzi and Petr Cech played showed dedication and promise through the 180 minutes.

Unai Emery's tactics were not as effective as he would've liked them to be against the PL juggernauts in the two games.

Chelsea v Arsenal - Premier League
The Arsenal head-coach has a lot of questions to answer this season

The game speed and intensity of the Gunners under Emery is quite different from that of Arsene Wenger's side. The Spaniard'sseignings have made an impression in terms of the quality of football they can offer, with Lucas Torreira and Guendouzi dishing out promising performances in the two games.

There seems to be a certain kind of positivity in the Arsenal's squad. Though they lacked clinical finishing against Chelsea, a starting eleven with the likes of Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang starting as forwards will help resolve the issue.

However, the coaching staff needs to fix additional complications in the defence, more so since the Gunners have conceded as many as five goals in just two games, which is a worrisome stat for the season that lies ahead.

Tactics

Chelsea v Arsenal - Premier League
Arsenal find themselves in a must-win encounter against West Ham this Saturday (August 25)

Arsenal have tried to execute a possession-based game in both matches, starting attacks from the back and holding onto the ball as much as possible. Although the Gunners couldn't match the level of football City played; Arsenal appeared a better side against Chelsea.

Alex Iwobi's goal at Stamford Bridge last week came in 18 touches of the ball from the goal kick, which started from the goalkeeper.

If it wasn't for Eden Hazard coming in for Chelsea after halftime, Arsenal were primed to clinch at least one point from the encounter. He persecuted Arsenal's defence as soon as he came on and Hector Bellerin proved to be no match to his speed and skills on the left flank.

The chances of Unai Emery changing his 4-2-3-1 system is close are slim.Hence, we can presume that the Gunners will start with just one striker upfront at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday.

Arsenal predicted XI vs West Ham

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Arsenal predicted XI vs West Ham

Analysing the previous two games for Arsenal, the aforementioned starting 11 is what the Gooners would ideally prefer against the Hammers.

However, Emery might have plans to stick to his formation and his starting players for at least four to five games before making any changes so early in the season.

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Harsh Pillai
ANALYST
Football is life.
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