Arsenal will be eyeing a fourth straight Premier League win when they travel to the London Stadium to face West Ham United this afternoon.
The Gunners dominated the proceedings against leaders Liverpool last weekend. The club registered a 3-1 win over Jurgen Klopp’s side to put themselves back in the title race.
With Liverpool beating Burnley yesterday, the gap to the top has once again increased to five points. Arsenal need to respond with another victory in today’s London derby.
The Gunners are winless in their last three meetings against the Hammers including a 2-0 loss at the Emirates in December. They must end the run to stay in the title pursuit.
David Raya has been in brilliant form in goal over the past few weeks. The Spaniard has been good playing out from the back and has also caught the eye with his long balls. He will be eyeing his seventh clean sheet of the Premier League campaign.
In defence, there could be an enforced change with Oleksandr Zinchenko doubtful. He was substituted against the Reds with an injury at half-time. Arteta has provided no update on his condition.
Jakub Kiwior had a good outing in the second half and almost scored a brilliant goal, but we expect Takehiro Tomiyasu to start at left-back, having returned from Asian Cup duty with Japan.
The €30 million-rated star was brilliant for the Gunners earlier this term with some quality assists. The former Bologna man should provide the added defensive assurance from left-back.
The rest of the backline should stay unchanged. Ben White was fantastic in winning duels from right-back last weekend and should keep his place with William Saliba and Gabriel Magalhaes in central defence.
Jorginho delivered a man of the match performance against the Reds, winning seven duels and managing more passes than any other player on the field. He is unlikely to be dropped today.
Declan Rice could be under pressure against his former employers and playing Jorginho alongside him should help in gaining control of the proceedings in the heart of the midfield.
Further forward, no changes are expected. Bukayo Saka and Gabriel Martinelli are nailed-on starters on the right and left wing. The same is the case with captain Martin Odegaard in the number 10 role.
With Gabriel Jesus doubtful with a knee concern, we expect Kai Havertz to lead the attack again. Havertz failed to score against the Reds, but he was brilliant with his hold-up and link-up play.
The Gunners were craving for his aerial presence in the box against the Hammers last time around. The German could have a key role to play today as the Gunners eye another crucial win.
How Arsenal could line up vs West Ham
Stats from Transfermarkt.com