Arsenal edge past lively West Ham

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  • Arnautovic gave West Ham lead
  • Monreal, Diop own goal, Welbeck seal win
  • First Arsenal win for Unai Emery
  • Three-straight defeats for West Ham

Arsenal beat a spirited West Ham side 3-1 at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday, with Unai Emery getting his first win, and points, as a Premier League manager.

The Hammers took the lead through Marko Arnautovic and were dangerous throughout on the break, but Arsenal equalized through Nacho Monreal and then a Issa Diop goal put them ahead. Danny Welbeck scored late on to seal the win as Arsenal have three points from their opening three games.

Manuel Pellegrini and West Ham have now lost all three of his opening games as Hammers boss, but don’t let the scoreline deceive you in this game.

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The Gunners thought they had taken the lead early on as Aaron Rasmey headed home after Henrikh Mkhitaryan‘s effort was parried by Lukasz Fabianski, but the Welshman was in an offside position.

At the other end Arnautovic smashed a shot into the side-netting as West Ham broke free via Robert Snodgrass‘ ball. Arnautovic almost got on the end of another ball soon after as the visitors launched plenty of dangers counters.

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Arnautovic made no mistake soon after as he linked up well with Felipe Anderson and stroked home the opener to send the away fans wild at the Emirates Stadium. 1-0 to the Hammers.

West Ham’s lead was short-lived with Hector Bellerin racing down the right and his cross to the back post found Monreal who slammed home to make it 1-1. Before the break the Hammers continued to look dangerous on the break with Anderson going close, while at the other end Aubameyang fired over.

The Hammers should have regained the lead just before half time as Snodgrass raced onto a through ball but Petr Cech saved well down low.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

After the break Arnautovic went close again but West Ham’s main man injured himself in the process of having a shot and had to leave the pitch.

Arsenal struggled to get going in the second half but they took the lead as Lacazette’s cross hit Diop and deflected in to make it 2-1. Unfortunate for the Hammers.

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The Gunners almost grabbed another soon after but Diop blocked Aubameyang’s shot this time and then Fabianski saved well. Ramsey was then denied by Fabianski but at the other end Anderson set up Lucas Perez but his shot across goal just missed the onrushing Andriy Yarmolenko.

Anderson then drilled a shot across goal which was inches away from connecting with his teammate as Arsenal then sealed the win.

Bellerin crossed for substitute Welbeck who turned under no pressure and slotted home to make it 3-1.

Southgate, England players sound off on racist abuse

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England took care of business in Monday’s 6-0 thrashing of Bulgaria, but the Three Lions had to endure some horrendous racist abuse from the crowd during the game.

The match was paused on two occasions I’m the first half by the match officials after racist chanting could be heard from a section of supporters, and a large group of Bulgarian fans were ejected towards the end of the half. However, racist abuse continued during the match from small pockets of fans in the stadium.

[READ: England v. Bulgaria delayed after racist abuse from stands]

“I have to say that the officials were on to everything very quickly,” England manager Gareth Southgate told ITV after the match. “We reported everything immediately when we heard things, we had constant communication with the fourth official and the referee. I was in contact with the players, all the way through the first half in particular, and then again at halftime.

”We know it’s an unacceptable situation, and I think we’ve managed to make two statements. By winning the game, but also we’re raised the awareness of everybody to the situation. The game was stopped twice, I know for some people that won’t be enough, but we as a group were on board with that process.”

Raheem Sterling, who scored a brace in the win, also sounded off on social media, as did former England and Arsenal star Ian Wright.

Ultimately, UEFA and the match officials followed the protocol, but the sad part about this is that England and the officials had a plan for racist abuse, and it was predictable that it would happen.

In a statement after the game, the FA confirmed they would be asking UEFA to investigate what happened. However, any punishment is too little, too late for the players who endured the abuse.

Kane, Sterling star as England rout Bulgaria

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On a night where racist abuse from the stands in Bulgaria marred the overall spectacle, England’s players produced an incredible result and spectacle for the visiting fans, with all things considered.

Harry Kane scored once and assisted on three others as England rolled over Bulgaria, winning 6-0 on Monday evening in the Vasil Levski Stadium in Sofia, Bulgaria. Raheem Sterling and Ross Barkley both scored a brace for the Three Lions and Marcus Rashford’s thunderbolt from a tight angle gave England the opening goal it needed.

The blowout result was the perfect response after England had suffered its first loss in qualifying for a decade, losing on Friday, 2-1 at the Czech Republic. The six goals England put past Bulgaria was also the fourth time out of six games that England had scored at least five goals in a match. The only other time, aside from the defeat, was a 4-0 win last month at Wembley Stadium over Bulgaria.

This story will be updated.

 

Racist abuse delays England v. Bulgaria qualifier

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England raced out to an impressive 4-0 lead at Bulgaria by halftime, but the wonderful attacking display was marred by horrendous incidents from the crowd.

The match in the Vasil Levski Stadium in Sofia, Bulgaria was stopped on two occasions with announcements being made to ask sections of the crowd to stop their abusive language. This comes with the stadium already serving a partial stadium closure due to racist chanting from the crowd in previous qualifiers.

Below is UEFA’s protocol on how to intervene in these situations, and what transpired from lead writer Joe Prince-Wright.

Tottenham re-signs goalkeeper Vorm

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With Hugo Lloris set to miss at least another two months of action with a broken elbow, Tottenham has turned to a familiar face to provide some cover between the pipes.

Tottenham announced Monday it had re-signed goalkeeper Michel Vorm to a contract through the end of the 2019-2020 Premier League season. Vorm spent five seasons with Tottenham after signing from Swansea City in 2014. However, after playing second-fiddle to Lloris and later serving as the third backup behind current Tottenham No. 2, Paulo Gazzaniga for the past couple of seasons, Vorm was released at the end of last season.

Its certainly a boost for Tottenham that a player with a long history at the club and plenty of experience was available to help in this situation. Similar to Liverpool picking up Adrian after Alisson Becker’s injury, Tottenham know what it’s getting in Vorm and may play him a few times if Gazzaniga needs a night off in the next few months.

According to Vorm, he had been home in his native Netherlands and was watching the game when he saw Lloris get injured.

“Obviously I saw straight away that he had a bad injury and at the time I thought about how bad it was, Vorm told Tottenham’s website. “After the game I spoke with Jan (Vertonghen), he told me what was going on and I spoke also with Toni (Jimenez, our goalkeeping coach) and, yes, during the week I got the phone call to ask if I was open to come back and help out. I’ve kept in contact with a lot of the players and also with Toni. We were speaking quite regularly and on Thursday he called me, we had the conversation and from there on, it went very quickly.”

In his five seasons with Tottenham, Vorm made a total of 47 appearances in all competitions. He saw plenty of time in the League Cup, FA Cup, UEFA Europa League and Champions League during his stay at White Hart Lane.