West Ham vs Arsenal: The battle for top four

West Ham vs Arsenal: The battle for top four

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As the Barclays Premier League footballing season closes in on its eventual finale, every game becomes critical for those at the opposite ends of the table. Whilst those around the bottom fight and scrap against relegation, those at the top end battle for the league title or a chance at european showboating.

A fixture that will optimise the latter will take place early Saturday afternoon when Arsenal FC visit Upton Park for the last time ever to take on West Ham United. Usually this London derby is a chance for the east enders to get one over their more successful North London counterparts, however on this occasion there is more at stake for both clubs. With the season being so unpredictable you would have a better success playing at this website than predicting how this game will pan out.

It is universally agreed, on the most part, that Arsenal have thrown away their chance of winning the league having led the Premiership at the beginning of January only to see their form continue its winter decline, allowing Leicester and archenemies Tottenham Hotspurs to leap frog them. It now appears that Arsene Wenger’s men have embroiled themselves in the battle to remain in the top four again. A battle that they have been successful at the last 18 successive attempts. Every year this record is under siege but this year the fear of Spurs finishing above them looms like an ominous axe.

West ham on the other hand are having a fantastic season under the management of Slaven Bilic, a former player who has returned in a risky attempt to bolster his already legend-like legacy at Upton Park. With the acquisition of a certain Dimitri Payet, a shoe-in for all the player of the season awards, West ham have looked a different proposition for their opposition. In fact, at the beginning of the season Arsenal lost 2-0 to the Hammers on the opening day of the season. What started off as a surprise carried on throughout the season and now West sit in 6th place already surpassing expectations. With 9 games to go, forget the Europa League, they have a shot at the big one, the Champions League.

Arsenal sit in third place with 58 points, 7 points above West Ham. Yet only 3 points separate West Ham from 4th place Manchester City. So this meeting between Arsenal and West Ham is important to both clubs for different reasons yet for the same goal. A West Ham win will bring Arsenal closer into their grasp whilst if the Gunners lose, their top four certainty becomes under threat as they get embroiled in a larger battle between Manchester United, Manchester City and West Ham.

This London has a lot of emotional weight behind it other than the fight for Champions League money. West Ham will be moving to the Olympic Park next season so will want to get one over against Arsenal. Wenger’s men will want to ruin the party and solidify their perennial Champions League also-rans tag. Whatever happens and whoever’s side you’re on be sure to tune into BT Sport for the 12.45 kick off this Saturday afternoon because this game will be entertaining.

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