Premier League: Arsenal edge West Ham to regain fourth spot

Premier League: Arsenal edge West Ham to regain fourth spot

Hours after dropping from the top four following Tottenham's win over Leicester, Arsenal regained their spot after edging West Ham 2-1 in a tightly contested London derby at the London Stadium on Sunday evening. 

The Gunners started the day in fourth, but Spurs leapfrogged them thanks to a 3-1 win over Leicester City earlier in the day. 

Mikel Arteta's outfit knew they needed a win to keep their hopes of playing Champions League football alive, and they did exactly that, thanks to goals in each half from Rob Holding and Gabriel. 

The match got off to a slow start with no clear chances from both sides in the opening half an hour in what was a balanced affair. 

Eddie Nketiah came close to giving the Gunners the lead in the 38th minute after making a near-perfect solo run, but his effort was well kept out by Lukasz Fabianski with the ball rolling out for a corner kick. 

The Gunners however scored from the resulting corner as Holding rose highest to head home having shaken off his marker.

West Ham almost equalised two minutes later when Declan Rice rose highest to meet a well-taken corner, but his effort towards the underside of the crossbar was brilliantly kept out by Aaron Ramsdale. 

It did not take long though for a second goal of the match, and it belonged to the hosts as they drew level with a fantastic team goal. 

Jarrod Bowen was set free in the area by Vladimir Coufal and he made no mistake with a lovely finish into the bottom left corner. 

Arsenal came back for the second half looking sharper and dangerous, and almost took the lead seven minutes in when Saka picked up the ball, dribbled to the edge of the penalty area, and unleashed a brilliant shot to the bottom right corner, but was thwarted by a great save from Fabianski. 

Just before the hour mark, the Gunners got their second goal of the match when Gabriel Martinelli launched a beautifully lofted cross into the box, where Gabriel nicely made contact with the ball, steering it home beyond the keeper. 

Both sides had a number of late chances to add to their respective tallies, but it did not happen as the match ended 2-1 in favour of the visitors. 

The Gunners are now fourth, three points behind Chelsea, who lost 1-0 to Everton earlier in the day. 

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