Arsenal: Mikel Arteta praises Arsenal for ‘winning badly’ after narrowly seeing West Ham

Mikel Arteta praises Arsenal for ‘winning badly’ after beating West Ham in London derby to return to the top four – and Gunners manager is now targeting rivals Chelsea for THIRD place

Mikel Arteta has praised his Arsenal players for ‘winning hard’ at West Ham, saying they are dealing with the pressure and want to steal Chelsea’s Premier League third place.

Defender Gabriel’s header at London Stadium took Arsenal to fourth in the Premier League, two points clear of rivals Tottenham, who beat Leicester earlier in the day.

“Big win,” Arteta said, borrowing West Ham’s fan-favorite word. ‘The team showed great character. Do not give up. To keep trying to make things right. The way they fought, the way they knew how to manage the game at certain times. It was phenomenal.

Mikel Arteta has challenged his team to now aim for a third-place finish in the Premier League

Arsenal are back in the top four after a 2-1 win over West Ham United on Sunday.

Arsenal are back in the top four after a 2-1 win over West Ham United on Sunday.

‘In England you say you ‘won hard’? From my point of view, we won badly. But I’m extremely happy to see a team that has that ability to find a way to win and show the character they’ve shown.’

Asked if this is now a race for third rather than just fourth, Arteta said: ‘Mathematically, everything is open-ended.

‘We’re going to have to go to Leeds and win again because everybody’s going to put pressure. We have to deal with it. We have a great opportunity.

Goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale is also hopeful the Gunners can now take the battle to Chelsea.

Goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale is also hopeful the Gunners can now take the battle to Chelsea.

Goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale later insisted he was unaware that Tottenham had beaten Leicester, but also said Arsenal could finish third above Chelsea.

It was two set pieces that undid West Ham and that defeat left them in seventh. If David Moyes’ men are to reach the Champions League, they will need to win the Europa League, whose semi-final they lose 2-1 to Eintracht Frankfurt before Thursday’s return game.

“I thought we did a good job on them,” Moyes said. “We kept Arsenal quiet. What we didn’t do well was set-pieces, which we’re usually pretty good at.’

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