Hours after falling out of the top four following Tottenham’s win over Leicester, Arsenal reclaimed their place with a 2-1 win over West Ham in the hotly contested London derby at the London Stadium on Sunday night.
Arsenal started the day in fourth place, but Tottenham edged them out thanks to a 3-1 win over Leicester City earlier in the day.
Mikel Arteta’s side knew they needed to win to keep their hopes of playing Champions League football alive, and they did just that, thanks to goals in every half from Rob Holding and Gabriel.
The match got off to a slow start with no clear chances for either side in the first half hour in a well-balanced match.
Eddie Nketiah came close to giving Arsenal the lead in the 38th minute with a near-perfect solo run, but Lukasz Fabianski parried his effort with a volley for a corner kick.
However, Arsenal scored from the resulting corner as Houlding rose to head the net after ditching his defence.
West Ham almost equalized two minutes later when Declan Rice rose to the heights to meet a perfect corner kick, but his efforts to the underside of the crossbar were brilliantly saved by Aaron Ramsdale.
It didn’t take long for him to score a second goal in the match and he was the property of the hosts as they tied with a superb goal for the team.
Jarrod Bowen was released in the area by Vladimir Koval and did nothing wrong with a fine finishing touch in the lower left corner.
Arsenal returned to the second half more sharply and dangerously, and almost went seven minutes when Saka received the ball, passed to the edge of the penalty area, and fired a superb shot into the lower right corner, but it was thwarted. By saving big from Fabiansky.
A little before the hour, the Gunners scored their second goal of the match when Gabriel Martinelli fired a beautifully raised cross into the penalty area, where Gabriel touched the ball well, and led it to the net behind the goalkeeper.
The two teams had a number of chances of late to add to their respective roster, but that didn’t happen as the match ended 2-1 in favor of the visitors.
Arsenal are now fourth, three points behind Chelsea, who lost 1-0 to Everton earlier in the day.