Arsenal overcomes West Ham with inspired second half
Apr 10, 2017, 00:15
After a boring first half, Mesut Ozil marked his 150th Arsenal appearance with a tame opening goal before laying on the second for Theo Walcott.
The win ensured Arsenal moved up to fifth and within four points of the best four subsequent Manchester City's loss at Chelsea and Liverpool's draw with Bournemouth.
His goal in the 58th minute was placed neatly into the bottom right-hand corner of Darren Randolph's post and a pin-point assist for Theo Walcott 10 minutes later all but secured the three points for Arsene Wenger's side, who ultimately ran out comfortable 3-0 victors.
Germany worldwide Ozil - making his 150th Arsenal appearance - has come under fire for lacklustre displays this season and the ire aimed in his direction increased during a run the Gunners took into Wednesday's game that had seen them win just three times in their last 10 matches in all competitions. "We wanted to do it before this game against Swansea". "At the moment, though, it seems there only needs to be one thing that goes against us - it doesn't even have to be a goal - and we seem to crumble, which is disappointing. They didn't create a lot in the first half to be fair".
Ozil's performance came after he had felt unfairly criticised following the Champions League last-16 exit to Bayern Munich, but Walcott was in no doubt he would bounce back.
Asked if the goal would help Ozil's confidence, Walcott replied: "I wouldn't just say the goals, you could see it was slowly starting to come today".
"But they started to play with more freedom after scoring".
"We are in the final sprint in the Premier League".
But Walcott made it 2-0 in the 68th minute, Ozil supplying the cross from the left after a neat one-two with Sanchez. "The Premier League is so hard now that if you win, you always get one or two good results for you".
"We know we are going to score goals so if we get that clean sheet we will win games, we needed to go back to basics and we did today, everyone defended well together and we were very well structured".
"They take risks, they stay up with a few players and every time you lose the ball or when they get the ball it's a problem for the defence with those really good players, great players, on such a big pitch".
Kemba Walker scored 37 points, but the All-Star guard went cold in the third quarter along with the rest of the Hornets (36-42). The Warriors struggled mightily when Durant initially got hurt, losing five of seven games.
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