Scout Notes

Arsenal and West Ham buck trends in surprise London Stadium result

A below-par Arsenal performance led to an unlikely blank against West Ham on Saturday afternoon.

Unai Emery’s Gunners were uncharacteristically poor in attack and asked very few questions of their London Stadium hosts in the Gameweek 22 opener.

Why Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (£11.4m) followed up the captain hype of the last seven days with a frustrating two-pointer is the focus of this latest Scout Notes article.

West Ham 1-0 Arsenal

Goals: Declan Rice (£4.4m)

Assists: Samir Nasri (£5.5m)

Arsenal were well below their usual standard for offensive play in their 1-0 defeat to West Ham on Saturday. Emery named the exact same XI that put four past Fulham in Gameweek 21, with Alexandre Lacazette (£9.4m) alongside Aubameyang in attack, but the Gunners still offered little. In the first 21 Gameweeks of the campaign the Gunners averaged 1.95 big chances and 4.8 shots on target per match; against West Ham, they averaged zero and two in those respective categories.

The defeat also seems to have exposed problems delivering away from home for Arsenal. In their last four road trips, they have now registered an expected goals score of 4.40 compared to 10.29 in their last four Emirates Stadium encounters. They have also not won away from home since their trip to Bournemouth in November.

All of that meant a blank for Aubameyang who had been backed by this author as a strong captain candidate in Gameweek 22. considering he topped the league for expected goals in the last four Gameweeks and had notched up more shots than Salah and Hazard in that time.

With Lucas Torreira (£5.0m) named on the bench for a second consecutive Premier League match, and featuring only as a 59th-minute substitute, Arsenal lacked composure in midfield. Mark Noble (£4.8m) and Declan Rice (£4.4m) were clear winners in the central battle over the inexperienced Matteo Guendouzi (£4.4m). Like what happened against Fulham, the Gunners looked a little more fluid in attack after Torreira entered the fray, but by that stage, Aubameyang could only snatch at his chances, missing a great opportunity in the 63rd minute, before Alex Iwobi (£5.4m) grazed the far post when he was freed up on the left.

“We needed to attack more, better, but they defensively worked well. We created some chances but it wasn’t enough. In the first 20 minutes when we created more it was the time we started thinking of winning this match but after it was very difficult as we didn’t impose everything that we wanted.” – Unai Emery

Emery may come in for criticism for not starting Torreira, but also over Aaron Ramsey (£7.2m), supposedly soon to leave for Juventus, improved things when he came on. That will beg more questions about why he has been left out so often, and why Emery is prepared to let him leave. Meanwhile, Mesut Özil (£8.0m) was absent from the match-day squad entirely for supposedly tactical reasons.

“I decided that the players I have here were the best for this match. We have won with him, we have lost with him, he is not one player that is for sale. We know we can’t lose him.” – Unai Emery

What made Arsenal’s goalless display all the more perplexing was the fact that West Ham’s defence was in poor shape ahead of the game. The Hammers had just one Premier League clean sheet at home prior to kick-off and had slipped into the division’s bottom-five for shots conceded in the penalty box over the previous four Gameweeks. Furthermore, West Ham had been visibly suffering in the absence of centre-back Fabian Balbuena (£4.3m) of late, the Paraguayan now ruled out for six weeks. So just as Arsenal bucked their recent trends in attack, the Hammers responded in kind by unexpectedly stifling the visitors, collecting just a second clean sheet in front of their own supporters this season.

It is rather frustrating for Fantasy managers that Manuel Pellegrini’s men struggled to keep out the likes of Watford, Cardiff and Wolves at the London Stadium, their only home shut-outs coming against Arsenal and Chelsea. That meant another nine-point haul against top opposition for Lukasz Fabianski (£4.7m), who lost roughly 80,000 owners ahead of Gameweek 22.

While West Ham secured a rare clean sheet, Emery’s defensive problems continued in the capital. Initially, there was the boost of a return to fitness for three defensive players who were yellow-flagged before kick-off. Laurent Koscielny (£5.4m) started in the back-three while Nacho Monreal (£5.4m) and Hector Bellerín (£5.4m) were named on the bench. Ainsley Maitland-Niles (£4.4m) was preferred to the latter at right back but was replaced by him in the second half. On the other flank, Sead Kolasinac (£4.9m) kept his place despite the return of Monreal.

Those returns counted for nothing in the opening minutes of the second half when Rice put the hosts in front. Koscielny continued to show his rustiness since coming back from injury as it was his poor defensive header which was pounced upon by Samir Nasri (£5.5m) in the Arsenal box. With the Gunners’ back-line not expecting to be required so quickly after the failed clearance, Rice had all the time he needed to pick out the top corner. Arsenal have now conceded 10 times in their last four away matches and only Fulham and Bournemouth have shipped more goals on their travels this season than Emery’s men. For that reason, they may continue to be targeted by those holding attacking assets of their upcoming opponents.

Marko Arnautovic (£6.9m) was back to lead the West Ham line after being substituted as a precaution in the FA Cup third round. In truth, he wasn’t a constant thorn in Arsenal’s side and actually only registered one shot in the match. The Austrian was substituted in the 71st minute and waved to the West Ham fans, further fuelling rumours that his departure from the club is imminent. After the game, Pellegrini explained that he was replaced by Andy Carroll (£5.4m) because of the back pain felt against Birmingham City flaring up again.

“Marko felt the same pain in his back as he felt during the Cup so it was not good for him to take the risk to continue. He was part of the team and the complete team played well.” – Manuel Pellegrini

Playing loosely in the number 10 role behind Arnautovic was Nasri, making his full Premier League debut for West Ham. It was his first competitive fixture for over a year but he played well considering his absence from the game. Only two players registered more penalty box touches in the match than him, and it was his short pass to Rice which set up West Ham’s only goal. His inclusion in the starting XI was bad news for Robert Snodgrass (£5.4m) who dropped to the bench. Pellegrini was very pleased with Nasri’s performance and cited his versatility when discussing whether he would be a regular feature in the West Ham midfield.

“He was similar behind the striker, I don’t think that he is able to play in this moment on the wing or as a holding midfielder but sure in two or three games more he will be able to play in all the positions he did before. He played the right wing, left wing be near the position of Mark Noble, he doesn’t have any problem, he is a football player.” – Manuel Pellegrini

Not surprisingly, Nasri was unable to last the full match having managed only an hour in the FA Cup third round last week. He was substituted in the 70th minute, but Pellegrini remains unconcerned by his fitness.

“Yes, because Samir Nasri is a top player and when he has more minutes and his feet are 100 per cent he will make the difference as always he did in Arsenal and Manchester City. In that position it was very necessary for us to have those kind of players because the other three, Wilshere, Lanzini and Yarmolenko are injured, so Samir is improving and I am sure, because I trust a lot in his game, that he will continue to do so in the future.” – Manuel Pellegrini

Felipe Anderson (£7.4m) is now three matches in a row without attacking returns but showed some promise. He looked threatening every time West Ham bore down on Arsenal’s goal and touched the ball more times in the penalty box more times than any other player in the match.

West Ham United XI (4-2-3-1): Fabianski; Cresswell, Ogbonna, Diop, Zabaleta; Rice, Noble; Anderson, Nasri (Snodgrass 70′), Antonio (Obiang 81′); Arnautovic (Carroll 70′).

Arsenal XI (3-4-2-1): Leno; Koscielny, Sokratis, Mustafi (Ramsey 59′); Kolasinac, Xhaka (Torreira 59′), Guendouzi, Maitland-Niles (Bellerín 68′); Iwobi, Aubameyang; Lacazette.

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3,107 Comments Post a Comment
  1. jomikijiq
    • 3 Years
    2 months, 11 days ago

    Hi. Any ideas?

    Foster
    VVD, Doherty, Digne
    Salah, Hazard, Sane, Rich
    Auba, Rashford, Ings

    Button, AWB, Diop, Hogg

    1 FT, 0.7 itb

    1. Blame it on Traore
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Squad looks strong to me. I've got Ings and VVD too and tempted to do the switch to Trent so I can upgrade Ings to Jimenez.

      1. Magic Zico
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Sounds good advice to me

      2. jomikijiq
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        thanks, maybe next week as doubt it is worth a hit

    2. olidooley
      • 6 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Save FT

      1. jomikijiq
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        cheers

    3. Gregor
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • Has Moderation Rights
      • 9 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Looks ace, think I’d try and roll the transfer.

      1. jomikijiq
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        cheers

  2. olidooley
    • 6 Years
    2 months, 11 days ago

    Hey guys....

    Alonso to TAA with 1 FT? Allows Fraser to Sigurdsson/Richarlison next week

    Patricio Speroni
    Alonso Robertson Doherty Digne AWB
    Salah Sane Pogba Fraser Hojbjerg
    Kane Rashford Jimenez

    1. KUNingas
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Do it

    2. Magic Zico
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Decent plan

    3. Blame it on Traore
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Does Fraser have West Ham next weekend? Think I'd hold if so.

    4. jomikijiq
      • 3 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      yes

  3. Magic Zico
    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
    2 months, 11 days ago

    Hey folks, if you have Kane and no City assets, would you trade out Son for A. Ali/Eriksen or B. Sane for next few weeks?

    1. Pat Bonner
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Probably sane

    2. Eat my goal!
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Defo sane

    3. Tcheco
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Sane

    4. Blame it on Traore
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Yeah agreed. I think Sane as things stand

    5. Magic Zico
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Cheers folks ...

    6. jomikijiq
      • 3 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Considering value Sane is probably the best City asset right now so him

  4. Tcheco
    • 1 Year
    2 months, 11 days ago

    WC active. Please feel free to destroy this team with negative (or positive) comments & suggestions

    Lloris
    TAA Lindelof Doherty
    Salah Sane Pogba Richarlison
    Kane Rashford Jimenez

    Button Camarasa AWB Bednarek

    1. Eat my goal!
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      2 months, 11 days ago

      I’d be tempted to go for a cheaper keeper and upgrade Lindelöf

      Otherwise looks on point

      1. Tcheco
        • 1 Year
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Cheers EMG

    2. Magic Zico
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Great team. If must, I would change Lloris and Lindelof. Go Etheridge and upgrade Lind e.g.

      1. Tcheco
        • 1 Year
        2 months, 11 days ago

        I just tried doing that & it gives me 0.8 ITB. Not many 5.6 defenders I like + Lloris is the cheapest and safest way into Spurs defense.

        Thanks Zico

    3. Pat Bonner
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Nice seeing a wc which is so similar to my team! Lose Lindelof, only change I’d make

    4. Miniboss
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Can’t really find anything to complain. Agree with what others said about keepers & Lindelöf. Otherwise very strong.

    5. Tcheco
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Thanks Pat & Megaboss

    6. Amey
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Camarasa to 4.3 & lindelof to Digne ??

        1. Tcheco
          • 1 Year
          2 months, 11 days ago

          Nice one. I think I might do that

    7. Blame it on Traore
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 4 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Wanted to pay tribute to Wan-Bissaka. Palace didn't keep a clean sheet and he still got full bonus. What a hero.

      1. Tcheco
        • 1 Year
        2 months, 11 days ago

        AWB took just 22 GW's to become an FPL legend

      2. Magic Zico
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        2 months, 11 days ago

        I was deflated when Palace conceded two but refreshing my browser many times as did not believe what I saw on his baps.

    8. Bury94
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Out: Son, Anderson and Alonso
      In: Salah, Nasri and Shaw (-4)?

      What do you think?

      1. Pat Bonner
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Pretty good, apart from shaw...wont keep many clean sheets. Losing Felipe could backfire with Bournemouth up next but looks nice getting salah

        1. Bury94
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 1 Year
          2 months, 11 days ago

          Thanks, only have 4.9 on a defender unless I get someone even cheaper than Nasri

          1. Pat Bonner
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 7 Years
            2 months, 11 days ago

            Holebas maybe?

      2. gaurava1216
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        salah and anderson leaves you how much for defender?
        who else u got

    9. Pat Bonner
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 7 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Pretty happy with my team (apart from goalkeepers). Any suggestions? Save or replace Ryan is what I’m thinking. Got 1ft and 0.2 in the bank.

      Ryan button
      Robbo taa awb Doherty chambers
      Salah hazard Pogba Felipe camarasa
      Kane Jimenez Rashford

      1. gaurava1216
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Decent- The only issue i can see ( which i have also) is no Man City players... they have a few decent fixtures coming up.

        I m for sure doing Kane to Aguero and brining in Son when he is back from Asia cup- but until then Im unsure on how to also bring in City cover... I have the same mid 4 as with richarlison.

        So it seems Hazard only way in

        1. Pat Bonner
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 7 Years
          2 months, 11 days ago

          I just got rid of Man City guys last few gws. Had sane and sterling, will def monitor them as know they are capable of big hauls but will stick with hazard for now. Son is straight back in when he returns, been amazing for me this season

        2. Pat Bonner
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 7 Years
          2 months, 11 days ago

          Cheers for thoughts, appreciated

    10. JohnnyWark
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 2 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      RMT https://imgur.com/a/LnYONpR

      1. Becks
        • 1 Year
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Too light in defence, Pogba to Rich/Siggy and upgrade Bennett

        1. JohnnyWark
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 2 Years
          2 months, 11 days ago

          Would like to take advantage of 4.0 playing defenders, no way Pogba is leaving my team with their fixtures. As of today, Salah has more clean sheet points than De Gea.

    11. gaurava1216
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 3 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Hi Guys.... Dropped Sane for Hazard 2 weeks ago thinking Chelsea had 2 decent home games and Hazard just hasn't delivered.

      Have 2 FT so thinking of reversing the transfer as 1 change.
      2nd transfer is either Anderson to 9m Mid
      Or Jiminez to Rashford and hold Anderson ( Have pogba)

      Thoughts?

      1. Pat Bonner
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        I would hold Felipe for one more week. Jimenez is good value so would also be reluctant to lose him but like Rashford, anyone else you could lose to get Rashford

    12. Ooh Aah Cantona!
      • 2 Years
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Thoughts on this lot chaps? 1FT, 0m ITB.

      Only concern is no City coverage. Tempted by Hazard > Sane / KDB

      Fabianski
      Robertson, TAA, Doherty
      Salah (c), Hazard, Pogba, Richarlison
      Kane (vc), Rashford, Jimenez

      (Button)(Camarasa, Digne, AWB)

      1. gaurava1216
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        i m doing has to sane

      2. Magic Zico
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Can you just save?

    13. donlobatto
      • Fantasy Football Scout Member
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 11 days ago

      Morning all
      Decent week for me so far (finally) so looking to capitalise using my 2FT. Would you:

      A) Fix the weak links:
      Martial, Snod, Schindler > Rich, Camarasa, TAA (-4)

      B) Get in a City mid:
      Haz, Snod, Martial > Sterling, Rich, Kanté/ Nasri (-4)

      Current team:
      2FT 0.1itb
      Fab
      VVD, Luiz, Doherty, AWB, Schindler
      Salah, Haz, Pogba, Martial, Snod
      Kane, Wilson, Kamara

      Cheers!

      1. Amey
          2 months, 11 days ago

          Hello mate.
          A looks good move to me.

      2. Danstoke82
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Morning all

        Had to activate WC as my team was dropping like a stone, this is what I’ve come up with currently, appreciate your opinions on this;

        Alisson
        TAA Doherty Digne
        Salah Sterling Richarlison Pogba
        Kane Rashford Jimenez

        Subs; Speroni Bednarek Wan B Puncheon

        £0.2ITB

        1. Bam Bam Bigelow
          • 3 Years
          2 months, 11 days ago

          not keen on Digne, Everton don't get enough clean sheets

          1. Danstoke82
            • 4 Years
            2 months, 11 days ago

            Pereira or Shaw maybe?

        2. XABI 15
          • 3 Years
          2 months, 11 days ago

          I think that’s a great team. I personally would get Robertson instead of Allison and downgrade to a cheaper keeper

          1. Danstoke82
            • 4 Years
            2 months, 11 days ago

            Superb feedback thank you. Which keeper would you go with?

      3. The Royal Robin
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Morning all, how would you spend 2 FT's on this lot?

        Allison
        TAA Digne Rudiger Doherty
        Salah Hazard Deulofeu Pogba
        Kane Jiminez

        Button Camarasa Ings AWB

        1. Danstoke82
          • 4 Years
          2 months, 11 days ago

          Ings > Rashford maybe?

          1. The Royal Robin
            • 3 Years
            2 months, 11 days ago

            No money itb. Would need to ship someone else.

      4. Offs!de
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 6 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Hello folks!!
        Who seems to the best replacement of Son?
        a) Eriksen?
        b) Sane?
        c) Hazard (Alonso to TAA with -4)?
        .
        My forward lines look like:
        Salah | Richa | FAdersen | Pogba | Son*
        Kane | Jiminez | Barnes

        1. XABI 15
          • 3 Years
          2 months, 11 days ago

          I think Eriksen is a great pick over next few weeks

      5. Whats the Huth
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Are there no spreadsheet for when the blanks and double will be and who plays them

      6. XABI 15
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Subtle brag. I was 6k gameweek 8 and after about 12 red arrows in a row I was 290k last week. Decided to wildcard to salvage the season...

        Etheridge salah (c) robbo taa pereira 51 points! Sane sterling Richarlison pogba Rashford digne to go. Feels good to have a green arrow i had forgotten what it was like

      7. umerlfc
        • 3 Years
        2 months, 11 days ago

        Richarlison owners, keeping?

        1. Paddington Bear
          • 1 Year
          2 months, 10 days ago

          Nope

      8. Zilla
        • 1 Year
        2 months, 10 days ago

        Alonso sellers, who you're selling to?

        1. Paddington Bear
          • 1 Year
          2 months, 10 days ago

          TAA