Arsenal, previously leading the Premier League at Christmas, must secure a victory against West Ham United to maintain their top position as the year concludes. Despite Liverpool briefly taking the lead with a 2-0 win against Burnley, Arsenal benefited from Manchester United’s 3-2 comeback against Aston Villa on Boxing Day.
Arsenal’s strong performance in home London derbies, having been unbeaten in their last 12 (W8 D4), adds to their confidence against West Ham. The Gunners managed to keep a clean sheet in their recent encounter with West Ham in December 2021.
West Ham traditionally struggles in the year’s final league game, having won only once in the last seven years. Their manager, David Moyes, faces a challenging away record against Arsenal, having never won in 22 attempts (D4 L18).
Bukayo Saka, a key player for Arsenal, has an impressive record at the Emirates Stadium, contributing to 18 goals in his last 17 home games. Meanwhile, West Ham’s Jarrod Bowen has excelled in away matches, scoring seven goals on the road this season.
Regarding team news, Arsenal will be without Kai Havertz due to a suspension, while several players like Takehiro Tomiyasu, Fabio Vieira, Thomas Partey, and Jurrien Timber remain sidelined due to injuries. West Ham’s Nayef Aguerd’s availability is uncertain after missing the last game due to illness, and Michail Antonio is likely to be the only other absentee.
Arsenal boasts an impressive home track record against West Ham, emerging victorious in 12 of their last 13 Premier League matches at home, the only exception being a 2-0 loss at the start of the 2015-16 season. While West Ham enjoyed a winning streak against Arsenal between February 2006 and April 2007, their fortunes have since shifted, with only two victories in the 30 encounters that followed (alongside six draws and 22 losses).
Notably, West Ham has suffered more Premier League defeats against Arsenal (35) than against any other team, tying with their losses against Liverpool. On the flip side, Arsenal’s higher number of wins in the competition is only surpassed by their record against Everton (37).