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Arsenal 3-1 West Ham United: Player Ratings

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A brace from German winger Lukas Podolski and a crucial goal early in the second half from French striker Olivier Giroud helped Arsenal overturn a brief deficit and notch up a 3-1 win against West Ham United at the Emirates on Tuesday night. The win crucially puts the Gunners back in fourth place in the Premier League standings, and fans of the North London club will be hoping that one of their London neighbours Crystal Palace led by the man who never goes down Tony Pulis does them a favour tomorrow night when the Eagles head over to Goodison Park to take on Everton.

Here's how the Arsenal players performed on the night.

Arsenal Ratings:

Szczesny - 6 - Could do nothing about the goal, and had virtually nothing to do in the rest of the game. Arsenal's defenders kept him well protected and his long limbs were put to good use to catching plenty of air balls that came his way.

Sagna - 6 - The 31 year old Frenchman looked completely exhausted midway through the second half from his weekend exertions, and struggled to track back on quite a few occasions. He was well challenged by Matt Jarvis all night, who also ensured that Sagna's contribution in the attacking third was a little more limited that usual. Could have conceded an early penalty, but was lucky that Jarvis was honest and didn't go down.

Vermalaen - 7 - Acquitted himself excellently at left back, and arguably had his best game since his return from injury. Found himself one-on-one with Andy Carroll in the air a few times early in the game and was outstanding. Also produced the long diagonal ball which resulted in Arsenal's second goal. Arsenal might consider using him in a back 3 in the final stages of the season if it helps them play better defensively.

Mertesacker - 7 - The Big German was outstanding in the air against Carroll all night and his distribution was good too. He was a leader on the field always asking for the ball and getting Arsenal moving forward.

Koscielny - 6 - A welcome return to the starting eleven for the Frenchman, and despite Arsenal conceding a goal, the Gunners are a considerably better defensive unit with him in it.

Arteta - 6 - A solid professional performance from Arsenal's ageing midfielder. While not spectacular, Arteta played 120 minutes on Saturday, scored a crucial penalty and then came here and played another 95 minutes without showing for a minute that he was anywhere near tired. Wasn't spectacular with anything he did, but was crucial in protecting Arsenal's backline.

Kallstrom - 6 - A good full debut from the Swede. He showed some good touches on the ball and picked out some excellent passes. His tracking back was good. Got himself booked for a reckless tackle, but never shirked away from his defensive duties. Could prove to be a useful squad player for the Gunners.

Rosicky - 6 - Got himself booked early in the game for a poor tackle and that prevented him from being as expressive as he might have been otherwise. Link up play was decent, but nothing spectacular.

Cazorla - 6 - Cut a rather frustrated figure for much of the first half, before his key pass unleashed Podolski for the equalizer. Played with a little bit more joy in the second and had a few chances of his own to get on the scoresheet. Has perhaps been feeling the pressure of expectation in an otherwise ordinary team in recent weeks, and will be relieved that others are stepping up a bit now.

Podolski - 8 - Two perfect finishes from excellent positions sum up his day. Lethal in the box, and put in an outstanding cross too in the first half from which Giroud should have really scored. Arsenal fans know he is awful as a central striker in a 4-2-3-1 formation, due to his inability to link-up play and hold up the ball, but one can't help but wonder how deadly he would be in a 4-4-2 if he could actually play alongside a powerful striker, given his unmatched finishing.

Giroud - 7 - A welcome return to the scoresheet for the much maligned Frenchman. Took his goal brilliantly, but in fairness missed two far easier opportunities before it.


Ramsey - 7 - Got a nice 20 minutes under his belt, which also included a key assist for final goal. He will be absolutely crucial to Arsenal's run in.

Jenkinson - 6 - Nice 7 minute cameo from the young Englishman who got himself into a couple of excellent positions in the attacking third but failed to hit an Arsenal man with his cross.