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Premier League
Wednesday, 13th December 2017

West Ham United 0
Arsenal 0

by Staff Writer


West Ham were denied a second consecutive derby victory by the width of a crossbar at the Olympic Stadium tonight.

With the game still goalless and entering added-on time, substitute Javier Hernandez's effort was good enough to beat Petr Cech but not the crossbar - and Arsenal managed to escape with a point on yet another decent night for David Moyes' rapidly-improving side.



Overall, the Gunners were well worth a share of the spoils and were themselves the width of a post away from registering when Iwobi hit the woodwork on the half-hour mark.

However West Ham's dogged persistance and determination offered the visitors very little else with which to test goalkeeper Adrian, recording his second consecutive clean sheet since regaining his first team spot.

David Moyes' rejuvenated side, confidence boosted by the weekend win against Chelsea had the ball in the net as early as the 15th minute but Marko Arnautovic's header was (correctly) ruled out for offside (albeit a marginal decision, the kind of which rarely seem to go in favour of teams in United's position against the Arsenals of this world).

Bar that effort, West Ham managed just one additional effort at goal in the entire opening half, whilst Arsenal created 10 - although Adrian was forced to make a save just once.

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The second half followed a similar pattern, with Arsenal continually frustrated by West Ham's determination not to concede. This situation was rarely challenged until the final few minutes of the game, when either side could have snatched a winner.

It was the Hammers who went closest to snatching victory though, when Arsenal conceded posession cheaply allowing Mark Noble to slot a brilliant through ball into the path of Hernandez - only for the Mexican, who had been on the field for just 10 minutes, to be denied by the crossbar.

Despite that late disappointment Moyes and his side will be very pleased with their night's work, following on from the three points gained against Chelsea last weekend and the spirited display at Manchester City prior to that.

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And whilst the Hammers remain in the bottom three after the midweek round of matches, they remain well in contention with the lower half of the table.

With four points on the board from the last two games, an excellent return given the calibre of the opposition, West Ham are just three points behind 13th-placed Brighton (17 points) - and will leapfrog next opponents Stoke should they manage to win at the bet365 Stadium on Saturday.

That game is followed by the return to Arsenal for the Carabao Cup quarter final, before vital Premier League matches against Newcastle, Bournemouth and West Bromwich Albion over the holiday period.

The challenge now for Moyes is to transfer his team's vastly-improved form against the league's front-runners to those struggling around them - something that has proved problematic to West Ham managers since time immemorial.

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West Ham Utd: Adrian, Reid, Ogbonna, Cresswell, Zabaleta, Noble, Obiang, Masuaku, Lanzini, Arnautovic, Antonio (Hernandez 82).

Subs not used: Hart, Collins, Rice, Carroll, Ayew, Sakho.

Booked: Lanzini, Reid.

Arsenal: Cech, Bellerin, Koscielny, Monreal, Xhaka, Wilshere, Maitland-Niles, Ozil, Iwobi (Welbeck 70), Sanchez (Lacazette 82), Giroud.

Subs not used: Ospina, Chambers, Kolasinac, Coquelin, Elneny.

Referee: Jonathan Moss.

Tickets sold: 56,921.



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Player Ratings

Adrian San Miguel Del Castillo
Commanded the defence well, distribution was second to none and made quite a few world class saves to keep his side afloat.


Pablo Zabaleta
Dealt with Leroy Sane really well down the left-hand side despite not being as quick and agile as his former team mate.


Arthur Masuaku
Was full of energy in the first half attacking with purpose and beating players with ease. Was relatively weak in defence in the closing stages of the match allowing crosses to be put into the box from his side.


Angelo Ogbonna
Gelled well with Aaron Cresswell and prevented City from creating many chances.


Declan Rice
Very decent in defence, not at all carried away by the occasion. Already a very mature player.


Aaron Cresswell
Played a commanding role in West Ham's relative success in defence cutting off the supply line to AgŁero.


Pedro Obiang
Kept the Man City midfield quiet and picked out some good incisive passes going forward.


Cheikhou Kouyate
Was a nuiscance for his opponents in midfield with his bulky presence.


Manuel Lanzini
West Ham's focal point going forward converting defence into attack in a flick of a switch with his agility and intelligence.


Edimilson Fernandes
Kept a very cool head in midfield.


Michail Antonio
A big threat for Man City in defence causing problems on the counter attack with his speed. Wasn't as productive when moved into a midfield role after the withdrawal of Kouyate.


Substitutes


Diafra Sakho
(Replaced Kouyate) Didn't pose the same threat as Antonio and was very isolated up front.


Marko Arnautovic
(Replaced Lanzini) Decent in defence and created, almost singlehandedly, the opportunity that almost put West Ham back on level terms.


Andre Ayew
(Replaced Antonio) No comments.


Nathan Trott
Did not play.


Ben Johnson
Did not play.


Domingos Quina
Did not play.


Anotnio Martinez
Did not play.



Match Facts

Referee: Jonathan Moss.

Attendance: 56,921.

Man of the Match: Angelo Ogbonna.

West Ham United

Adrian San Miguel Del Castillo, Pablo Zabaleta, Arthur Masuaku, Angelo Ogbonna, Declan Rice, Aaron Cresswell, Pedro Obiang, Cheikhou Kouyate, Manuel Lanzini, Edimilson Fernandes, Michail Antonio.

Goals: Angelo Ogbonna 44                  .

Booked: None.

Sent off: None.

Arsenal

Cech, Bellerin, Koscielny, Monreal, Xhaka, Wilshere, Maitland-Niles, Ozil, Iwobi (Welbeck 70), Sanchez (Lacazette 82), Giroud.

Substitutes: .

Subs not used: Ospina, Chambers, Kolasinac, Coquelin, Elneny.

Goals: .

Booked: .

Sent Off: .

 
Staff Writer's Man of the Match: Angelo Ogbonna


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