This weekend we play our 3rd (of ten) London derbies that we will contest in this season. So far we have won both of our derbies in impressive style. In the first half at home to Fulham we were clinical and decisive. We took our opportunities and punished the opposition for weak defending. Which left Martin Jol to quite poorly critique West Ham for calling us long ball hopers. Then on Monday night we had our first away derby and we passed with flying colours. We had to fight for the three points that we deserved and with some solid defending and containing a resurgent side at home was always going to be hard.
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Derby matches with rival side are always going to be tough but it is something that any West Ham fan should look forward to. We can take on our closest rivalries and the atmosphere for the game should be electric. We don’t really like them and they don’t really like us, but we will compete to be the best team in the capital.
Normally, when we play Arsenal or Chelsea a point is most definitely a point gained, whether we were winning the game or not because both of these sides can hurt you when they choose to do so. Having said that I feel that this weekend we should be looking for 3 points and be confident and positive when going forward. Arsenal are a good side, and at time they have been very solid in defense, having lost their first game of the season only last week against the European Champions, Chelsea.
I may be being deluded, but I feel that we can win the game this weekend and I really feel that on a basis of what we have seen from the Hammers this year so far, we can definitely do so. I feel that if Andy Carroll starts this weekend he will cause the Arsenal defense a few problems. Andy was devastating against Fulham, within 40 seconds he flicked the ball onto Ricardo Vaz Te who left it to Kevin Nolan to put us a goal up before a minute. Unfortunately as he picked up an injury, we couldn’t see him in action until last Monday who as he came on caused problems for QPR.
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Arsenal has a recent history of being vulnerable from set pieces and this trait has returned with Arsenal conceding their last three goals from set pieces. West Ham United has scored 4 goals from set pieces so far this season. With Andy Carroll being the main target for many of these goals. If we are to find victory, Andy Carroll will surely be a target for Mark Noble if we can take our chances from the set pieces.
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