Mikel Arteta salutes attitude of Arsenal players after victory over West Ham

Arsenal climb into the top four of the Premier League after beating West Ham 2-0

Gabriel Martinelli of Arsenal celebrates after scoring his team's first goal in their match against West Ham on Wednesday. Getty

Mikel Arteta saluted the “attitude and commitment” of his Arsenal players after they beat West Ham 2-0 to climb into the Premier League top four.

The Gunners won comfortably without striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who has been dropped and stripped of the captaincy after a breach of discipline.

Instead it was youngsters Gabriel Martinelli and Emile Smith Rowe who grabbed their chances with second-half goals.

It is quite a turnaround for Gunners boss Arteta, whose charges were rock bottom of the Premier League after three matches of the season, without a point or a goal to their name.

“I’m really happy with the performance, the attitude, the commitment and the quality we showed in the game, and the chemistry with the supporters," he said.

“To win at home is very important against a really good side who are difficult to dominate.

“The players play for the club and with the pride and the energy we expect from them. From the beginning you could see how focused they were.”

Arteta said there is “no news” on when Aubameyang might return to the squad, but on this evidence they are fine without him. Alexandre Lacazette wore the captain’s armband.

“He’s taken it with pride and commitment and I’m really happy with how he played," Arteta said. “You see how he acts with the younger players, he’s not a selfish player.”

The only blot on Lacazette’s copybook was a missed penalty after Vladimir Coufal took him down in the area.

Coufal was sent off for a second yellow card but former Gunners keeper Lukasz Fabianski saved the spot kick.

Weary-looking West Ham have won just one of their last six matches as their Champions League charge has slowed down to a crawl.

“I didn’t think an awful lot of our performance. I thought Arsenal played well," coach David Moyes said.

“We weren’t quite able to deal with it but we showed resilience to stick in the game. A couple of poor bits of play led to the goals.

"We gave the ball away for the second goal when we were a bit in the ascendency, even with 10 men.

“For the red card, he does get the ball first, but I thought he should have got more of the ball. But his timing means he catches the top of the ball and follows through.

“That’s the reason the referee needed to make a decision. We gave him the opportunity to choose one. But I thought we tried to have a go after that.”

Updated: December 16th 2021, 12:26 AM