Arsenal blow another 2-0 lead, draw at West Ham as title hopes looks questionable

Arsenal blew a 2-0 lead for the second game running, as they drew 2-2 at West Ham and their Premier League title hopes took another hit.

After letting a 2-0 lead slip at Liverpool last week, Mikel Arteta’s young side are wilting at precisely the wrong time.

Gabriel Jesus and Martin Odegaard both scored inside the first 10 minutes as the Gunners were flying early on but a first half Said Benrahma penalty kick flipped the momentum.

Moments after Bukayo Saka had missed a penalty kick to put Arsenal 3-1 up early in the second half, West Ham’s Jarrod Bowen made it 2-2 and the Hammers looked the more likely to win it late on.

The point puts West Ham on to 31 as they inch further away from the relegation zone.

Arsenal are now on 74 points and have a four-point lead over Manchester City but the latter have a game in-hand and if they win that and beat Arsenal in their massive showdown on April 26, they will go two points clear at the top of the table.

Gunners blowing 2-0 leads

Arsenal were so dominant in the first half it was scary. They went 2-0 up inside 10 minutes and looked like they would score with every attack. But a pattern is emerging. All season long they’ve scored early in games and rode that euphoria to victories.

But now they’re stuttering when they go 2-0 up. Why? Boredom. Plain and simple. Thomas Partey was getting bored with having so much of the ball and so much space that he switched off and allowed Declan Rice to win it back.

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That led to Gabriel making a poor challenge to give West Ham the penalty for their first goal. They then allowed one long ball over the top to find a completely unmarked Jarrod Bowen to make it 2-2. How does that happen?

These sloppy defensive mistakes are creeping back in to Arsenal’s game and they have been there all season. Perhaps missing William Saliba and Oleksandr Zinchenko is having a bigger impact than we thought?

After all, Arsenal have a small squad and Arteta has run them into the ground this season, focusing on keeping them together while the chemistry has been so good.

Perhaps he is now paying the price for Arsenal being so good for so much of the season that he didn’t feel the need to rotate his team? Fatigue mixed with boredom is why they are crumbling in games to hand Man City the initiative in the title race.

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