Arsenal Match Preview
By Tom Dowsett
Saturday 27 Dec 2014 20:09:00
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After losing to Chelsea on Boxing Day, West Ham United will not want to suffer back-to-back defeats for the first time this season just 48 hours later, as attention turns to another London derby and the visit of Arsenal to Upton Park on Sunday afternoon.

If they can beat Arsene Wenger's men, the Hammers will propel themselves back into the top four and see off 2014 in style.

Both sides go into the game having played on Boxing Day and the Gunners will want to build on the 2-1 home win against Queens Park Rangers. However, the Irons have an excellent home record so the visitors will need to be on their mettle if they are going to make it eight victories out of eight in East London.

The corresponding fixture last season saw West Ham take the lead through Carlton Cole, only for the visitors to storm back and win the match 3-1.

Defender Carl Jenkinson is ineligible for this game due to the terms of his loan agreement from Arsenal, so either Joey O'Brien or Guy Demel could replace him. James Tomkins faces a fitness test ahead of the game; if he is not deemed fit enough, then James Collins will retain his place in the side.

Alex song is in contention for a start after being dropped to the bench following alleged rumours that he had picked up a knock against Leicester City last weekend. Diafra Sakho was also rested for the trip to Stamford Bridge and could be recalled to the starting line-up.

Morgan Amalfitano will be pushing for a start after making a positive impact from the bench against the Blues. Sam Allardyce also has Matt Jarvis, Ricardo Vaz Te, Mauro Zarate and Carlton Cole available if he decides more changes are necessary.

Sunday's encounter kicks off at 3pm and Neil Swarbrick takes charge.


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