West Ham United desired to spoil the start of the Arsene Wenger farewell matches, but just could not, as a five-goal second half saw Arsenal win 4-1 Sunday at the Emirates Stadium.
David Moyes’ side had the better play in the opening 45 minutes, as Marko Arnautovic was a constant force and major problem for the Gunners backline, in particular for Shkodran Mustafi. But Joao Mario and Edimilson Fernandes couldn’t connect final ball passes to give the Austrian star a major chance.
Scoreless at the break, the second half would provide terrific entertainment. It began with a terrific corner kick goal from Nacho Monreal in the 51st minute to give Arsenal the opener. But the Hammers responded after Manuel Lanzini and Javier Hernandez came on, as Arnautovic added another sparkling goal of late for him to level the match in the 64th minute.
Arsenal’s offense wave was too much for West Ham though, as the home side took the lead again in the 82nd minute, when a mix up with Declan Rice and Joe Hart led to Aaron Ramsey’s cross going in. And victory was certainly sealed for the Gunners just three minutes later, when Alexander Lacazette’s shot deflected off of Aaron Cresswell and past Joe Hart to make it 3-1.
Lacazette would get a brace to round off the scoring in the 89th minute, with a vintage Arsenal team move that would have looked familiar in the high times of the Wenger era.
The Hammers will be a little disappointed to not troll one of their London rivals during such a time, but will have no time to think of that when they face off against new Premier League champions Manchester City next Sunday at the London Stadium.