Arsenal (2) – (0) West Ham United
Eduardo (2′), Adebayor (19′)
The Emirates Stadium, London
I only caught the highlights on MOTD last night so can only comment on certain aspects of last nights game, but one thing is clear – Eduardo’s form is going to be vital in the next few months.
After only two minutes, smart play from Cesc Fabregas on the right resulted in a cross into the area for Eduardo, who coolly chested the ball down and slashed in a killer volley to open the scoring after only 2 minutes.
Eduardo scores the first chance of the game!
I know my last match report of the Everton game kept harping on about this guy but he really is such a amazing finisher.
This kid doesn’t need second chances.
To score in such a ruthless manner and so early really is a huge advantage. Yesterday’s game was pretty comfortable but if Arsenal don’t get that first goal early then almost anything could happen (remember this fixture last season?) but with someone with such a killer instinct helps tenfold.
I know many people (including Arsene) have compared him to Robbie Fowler, but for me Eduardo is more like Ruud Van Nistelrooy. In the box, he’s devastating and always finds the net and if you create chances for him he will take them. And like the Dutchman, he probably won’t score too many outside the box but who cares when he scores so many inside it?
What I love about Eduardo is he just gets the ball into the net. He isn’t going to take on 4 players or make defence-splitting passes – he is just a predator, plain and simple. We’ve been accused of profligacy too many times in the past and now that has changed. Although to be fair, the more ruthless streak could be said about the team as a whole and not just Eduardo.
I have to admit though that almost had a heart attack when Eduardo missed a header at the far post later in the second half but replays showed his shirt was being tugged by Lucas Neill I think it was.
The second goal was from Adebayor, who’s pace took him away from the defence and he somehow managed to scored from a seemingly impossible angle.
With Adebayor and Eduardo playing together to such devastating effect, we’re lucky that Ade isn’t off to the ACN with Kolo and Eboue. The arrival of Eduardo (in a metaphorical sense obviously) also eases the pressure off Adebayor to keep performing and also comes at the perfect time as it looks like Robin will be about for a few weeks yet.
But of course, as much as things are going well for Arsenal there is some bad news, which is Kolo is now away with the Ivory Coast for the ACN. Depending how far they get Kolo might not be back until mid-February, and it’s hard to say how he will be mentally and physically after an intense tournament like the African Cup of Nations. We know Eboue is going too, but with Sagna making the right-back slot his own Arsenal will just miss out on a midfield player which is an area we seem to have well-covered.
So Gallas will be partnered with either Djourou or Senderos during this time, and even Gilberto possibly depending on what the boss thinks is best. I know a few people aren’t sure about Big Phil despite his experience but between the two Swiss Internationals I think we’re well covered.
Well Arsenal are two points clear after Kolo’s last game, so I guess we’ll see where we are when the rock returns next month.