Arsenal vs West Brom Match Review Lacazette brace helps arsenal clinch a 2-0 victory over West bromwich albion
It was a difficult and less than impressive start to the season for Arsenal, who narrowly got the better of Leicester City on the opening day before losing back-to-back games against Stoke City and Liverpool without scoring, but they seemed to have turned a corner since losing heavily at Anfield. The Gunners headed into tonight’s clash with three wins from their last four outings, although only one of those had come in the Premier League.
Just seven points from five games had left Arsenal in the bottom half of the table, with their opponents sitting one point ahead of them. The north London side’s last league outing saw them pick up a well-earned draw away to Chelsea, and, after conceding heavily against both Leicester and Liverpool, a clean sheet is exactly what Arsene Wenger would have been aiming for heading into the big game and so he successfully achieved.
As for West Brom, they started the season well but had suffered a slight dip in form over the past couple of weeks, leaving them without a win in their last three Premier League outings. Tony Pulis won’t be too concerned about the recent draws picked up against Stoke and West Ham United but the three goals conceded away to Brighton & Hove Albion will have been a real concern for a manager so fond of defensive stability.
With that in mind, it looked as if the West Brom boss had decided to start with a five-man defence as his side tried to keep Arsenal’s dangerous front line as quiet as possible. All eyes were on Gareth Barry in the heart of midfield, however, as the 36-year-old broke the all-time Premier League appearance record as he featured in a league game for the 633rd time.
Arsene Wenger had decided to make two changes to the Arsenal side that started the goalless draw against Chelsea last weekend, with Mohamed Elneny and Alexis Sanchez coming into the starting line-up to replace Alex Iwobi and Danny Welbeck.
Meanwhile, West Brom boss Tony Pulis had made three alterations to the team that featured in their last league outing, with Chris Brunt, James Morrison and Matty Phillips making way for Allan Nyom, Jake Livermore and Hal Robson-Kanu.
It seemed to look as another horror show in defence as just in the 9th minute an attempted attack from the Gunners failed to come to anything, and this time West Brom broke forward quickly. Jay Rodriguez sprinted into the left-hand side of the penalty area before trying to spin round Shkodran Mustafi, but he ended up being clipped by a clumsy sliding challenge from the defender. He was then able to get up and a fire a shot over to the far corner, where it hited the post after being saved by the fingertips of Petr Cech. Rodriguez was furious that the referee didn’t award his side a penalty which was completely understandable.
And arsenal duely made use of the huge let off as Sanchez and Bellerin linked up nicely just on the edge of the West Brom penalty area before the latter teed up Elneny. The Egyptian tried to cut onto his right foot to shoot, but he was caught by a clumsy challenge from Jonny Evans just outside of the box and that turned out to be a costly mistake as Sanchez’s curling free-kick was tipped onto the crossbar by Foster, but Lacazette was there to head the ball into the back of an empty net from a few yards out.
And after the west brom penalty incident in the first half questions will be raised on referee bobby madley as on the 66th minute Ramsey twisted and turned round Nyom before breaking into the left-hand side of the penalty area, where he was eventually barged to the ground by the Cameroonian defender and madley pointed to the spot which in turn looked as a harsh decision.
And the on the 67th minute the penalty was made into account. Despite foster guessing right, lacazette’s low shot rolled past the goalkeeper’s outstretched arm and into the bottom right-hand corner of the net to mark his second goal of the game.
In the end, it was a relatively comfortable victory for Arsenal, who struggled slightly towards the end of the first half but were in complete control after the break. West Brom were unable to push on in the second period, allowing the Gunners to continue piling bodies forward before they were eventually beaten.
That was Arsenal’s second win in three games and moved them up to seventh place in the Premier League table, just one point behind Tottenham Hotspur, Liverpool and Watford. West Brom, meanwhile, were now without a victory in their last four league games and have to host Watford on Saturday afternoon.