Danny Murphy makes bold West Ham prediction ahead of clash against Arsenal
By Matt Farr
Pundit Danny Murphy has made the bold claim that West Ham can beat Arsenal on Saturday.
The former Tottenham midfielder is convinced that the 16th-placed Hammers can capitalise against an Arsenal side that are challenging for the Premier League title.
The Gunners have won just once in their last five games in all competitions, but have lost just once in the league this season.
Arsene Wenger’s side were well beaten by Southampton in the EFL Cup on Wednesday night, and Murphy was quick to criticise Arsenal for their performance.
He was more impressed with West Ham’s display in their 1-1 draw with Manchester United a week ago, suggesting that if the Hammers can re-create that performance, they will come away with a great result on Saturday.
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He told the Evening Standard: “Arsenal are not playing well. They got away with murder at Old Trafford, when they managed to get a 1-1 draw against Manchester United, and Bournemouth were unlucky at the Emirates at the weekend.
“They are not looking as clinical as they were earlier in the season. They have been nicking results rather than dominating matches.
“West Ham need to show the same discipline they did at Old Trafford last weekend, where they drew 1-1. They need the same defensive organisation and caution as in an away game against one of the top teams,” he said.
He added that Slaven Bilic’s side should also draw upon their performance against Tottenham – where they were denied late on by Harry Kane – on November 19.
Bilic and company can take confidence from the number of injuries within Arsenal’s first-team squad, as their opponents will be weaker without the likes of Hector Bellerin and Santi Cazorla in their squad. The form of Mesut Ozil, meanwhile, has dropped in the absence of the Spaniard.
Furthermore, doubts over the fitness of Aaron Ramsey and Olivier Giroud suggest that the pair may not feature either.
The home side have injury concerns of their own, but if they follow Murphy’s advice and kick Arsenal while they are down, they can restart their faltering campaign.
The Hammers are 16th in the Premier League, just one point above the relegation zone.
In other West Ham news, Paul Merson has slammed Dimitri Payet for his poor attitude.