Declan Rice’s first goal for West Ham United earned his side a deserved first home victory over Arsenal for 13 years on Saturday, the youngster’s 48th minute strike securing a 1-0 win at the London Stadium. Arsenal began brightly and then had a flurry of chances after falling behind but West Ham were good value for the three points as they put a dent in Arsenal’s top-four hopes.
Former Arsenal midfielder Samir Nasri, rebuilding his career at West Ham after a doping ban, was at the heart of much of West Ham’s best work on his Premier League debut for the club. It was the Frenchman’s neat lay-off that allowed 19-year-old midfielder Rice the space to curl a superb shot past Bernd Leno. Rice had headed wide in a first half in which West Ham took charge with Felipe Anderson drilling a shot fractionally wide of the post after another lay-off by Frenchman Nasri.
Arsenal striker Alexandre Lacazette had a double chance early on and Matteo Guendouzi’s 25-metre effort flew just wide but Arsenal struggled to exert any sustained pressure. Alex Iwobi shaved the post with a low shot but Arsenal failed to score for the first time in 21 Premier League matches. Arsenal remain fifth on 41 points while West Ham move up to eighth on 31 points before the rest of the weekend fixtures.