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Arsenal: Convincing win over West Ham; Ozil praise; Former midfielder linked with return

Arsenal ran out convincing 5-1 winners against West Ham on Saturday night as they moved firmly into the title race. They haven’t been talked about as much as Manchester City, Liverpool and Chelsea, but Arsene Wenger’s men showed the quality that they possess on Saturday evening. The star of proceedings was Alexis Sanchez, who scored a hat-trick and contributed an assist for the opening goal. He was been excellent this season and the decision to play him as a striker is looking better and better with every week.

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The three points lifted Arsenal to second in the table, for the moment at least and they are certainly in the race for the title this season. They have now scored the most goals in the league with 32, which shows the attacking quality that they possess, while their defence is much improved since last season. Their problems lie in the midfield as Arsene Wenger has yet to find the best pairing in the absence of Santi Cazorla. He started Granit Xhaka with Francis Coquelin last night and they played well, but they will need to show more before becoming his favoured pair in the centre of the park.

The month of November hasn’t been a good one for Arsenal and Arsene Wenger historically, but they picked up eight points from four league matches this season. This isn’t a bad return and there will be hope that they can push on from here over the festive period. Mesut Ozil has told Goal that he is happy that his side have avoided their usual winter dip and says that they are in a good position to challenge for the title.

‘I’m very happy about the result, we took our chances and didn’t ease off maybe with one or two goals too much. We are in a good position in the title race now and survived our annual ‘Arsenovember’ without a defeat in the Premier League and are confident for the next matches.’

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‘But we must keep on winning and the lads must stay fit and healthy to stay at the top.’

They now have momentum and they need to push on over the coming months. They have tough fixtures against Everton and Manchester City in December, which will show us a lot about their title hopes. If they manage to get a positive result against City, they will confirm themselves as real title contenders, which could lead to pressure from fans to bring in further reinforcements in January.

One player that has been linked by various news sources on Sunday is Cesc Fabregas. There are claims that Arsenal will attempt to re-sign their former midfielder who hasn’t featured regularly for Chelsea this season. He played yesterday, but that was only due to an injury to Nemanja Matic. Arsene Wenger believes that his side is short of creative midfielders in the absence of Santi Cazorla and sees Fabregas as the answer to that.

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There have been problems in Arsenal’s transition phase of late and they haven’t been creating as many chances as they usually do. They have been over-reliant on Alexis Sanchez and they need to fix their midfield problems if they are to be title contenders come May. Cesc Fabregas may have his critics, especially among Arsenal fans, but he is an excellent player as he showed on Saturday against Manchester City. His vision was the reason for the first goal as he played a brilliant ball to Diego Costa and this is the creativity that Arsenal need in their midfield. Although he has history at Arsenal, if he came back and performed at a high level, it would all be forgotten. He would be a great signing.

Featured image: All rights reserved by Cesc Fabregas 4

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