West Ham United v Arsenal: the predictions and the psychology

West Ham’s last five Premier League games have brought a mix of results…

15 Dec 2018 Fulham v West Ham United W 0-2
22 Dec 2018 West Ham United v Watford L 0-2
27 Dec 2018 Southampton v West Ham United W 1-2
30 Dec 2018 Burnley v West Ham United L 2-0
02 Jan 2019 West Ham United v Brighton and Hove D 2-2

Two wins, two defeats and a draw – and interestingly neither of their victories was at home.  Although in the games at the start of December they did beat Cardiff and Crystal Palace, scoring three each time.

At home they are a mid-ranking team…

Team P W D L F A GD Pts
10 Watford 11 5 1 5 16 18 -2 16
11 Leicester City 10 4 2 4 12 10 2 14
12 West Ham United 11 4 2 5 16 18 -2 14
13 Wolverhampton Wanderers 11 4 2 5 12 15 -3 14
14 Cardiff City 11 4 1 6 13 23 -10 13
15 Fulham 10 3 3 4 12 19 -7 12

…still with more defeats at home than victories, and a negative goal difference.

Arsenal away were notorious last season, winning just four games all season through.   This season while not setting the world alight away from home they actually do have a better away record than West Ham have a home record…

P Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Tottenham Hotspur 12 10 0 2 28 12 16 30
2 Liverpool 10 8 2 0 21 5 16 26
3 Chelsea 10 7 1 2 19 8 11 22
4 Manchester City 10 6 2 2 19 7 12 20
5 Manchester United 11 5 2 4 22 19 3 17
6 Leicester City 11 5 2 4 13 13 0 17
7 Arsenal 10 4 3 3 22 21 1 15
8 Wolverhampton Wanderers 10 4 3 3 11 10 1 15

But this has not been a happy few weeks for Arsenal, as the recent results show

19 Dec 2018 Arsenal v Tottenham Hotspur (LC) L 0-2
22 Dec 2018 Arsenal v Burnley W 3-1
26 Dec 2018 Brighton and Hove Albion v Arsenal D 1-1
29 Dec 2018 Liverpool v Arsenal L 5-1
01 Jan 2019 Arsenal v Fulham W 4-1

I’ve included the League Cup game against Tottenham rather than restricting myself to league matches because of the high intensity of the derby match.

Arsenal did however pull themselves back together after the Tottenham defeat and after the Liverpool defeat, winning the next game against modest opposition – although each time they were at home.

But the fact is that Arsenal’s away scoring record is 22 goals to 21.  West Ham’s record at home is 16 for to 18 against.

But it is when we look at the head to head we can see where the power really lies.  This table only counts Premier League matches – the cup games in this period were Arsenal wins as well.  The result column is shown from Arsenal’s point of view

29 Sep 2007 West Ham United v Arsenal W 0-1
01 Jan 2008 Arsenal v West Ham United W 2-0
26 Oct 2008 West Ham United v Arsenal W 0-2
31 Jan 2009 Arsenal v West Ham United D 0-0
25 Oct 2009 West Ham United v Arsenal D 2-2
20 Mar 2010 Arsenal v West Ham United W 2-0
30 Oct 2010 Arsenal v West Ham United W 1-0
15 Jan 2011 West Ham United v Arsenal W 0-3
06 Oct 2012 West Ham United v Arsenal W 1-3
23 Jan 2013 Arsenal v West Ham United W 5-1
26 Dec 2013 West Ham United v Arsenal W 1-3
15 Apr 2014 Arsenal v West Ham United W 3-1
28 Dec 2014 West Ham United v Arsenal W 1-2
14 Mar 2015 Arsenal v West Ham United W 3-0
09 Aug 2015 Arsenal v West Ham United L 0-2
09 Apr 2016 West Ham United v Arsenal D 3-3
03 Dec 2016 West Ham United v Arsenal W 1-5
05 Apr 2017 Arsenal v West Ham United W 3-0
13 Dec 2017 West Ham United v Arsenal D 0-0
22 Apr 2018 Arsenal v West Ham United W 4-1
25 Aug 2018 Arsenal v West Ham United W 3-1

21 games by my adding up and only one West Ham win.  The last two gave Arsenal a 7-2 overall scoreline.  The last five give Arsenal 15 to West Ham’s 3.

Psychological prediction

West Ham do not see their home as a fortress and although the disturbing crowd scenes at the ground are now a dim memory, they are still a memory of fan discontent.  The owners of the club promised the crowd the most successful stadium migration in history, and lots more money spent on players but this has not arrived, and we are seeing a similar West Ham to the past.   The players will feel the crowd’s background discontent.

Arsenal will feel this is a ground they can win on, and all the recent results will boost them – their recent visits, their return to goalscoring after the Liverpool disaster – yes they will feel psychologically inferior to the top four sides in the League, but not here.  Here they will expect to win, and that is a most valuable commodity.

I would go for 1-3 to Arsenal

One comment

  • Mike

    And let’s not forget, that solitary West Ham win in 2015 ranks up there with some of the worst refereeing performances ever seen at the Emirates.

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