West Ham 3-3 Arsenal
Arsene Wenger had said this week, rather dauntingly, that we had to win every game remaining if we were to keep our already fading title hopes alive. Leicester City were 11 points ahead going into this round of fixtures, were much more concerned with Tottenham and, in hindsight, Wenger’s words might have placed unwanted pressure on an Arsenal squad that has more than once been described as fragile.
The game started in typical away Arsenal fashion as West Ham missed a golden chance to draw first blood, failing to convert after scything Arsenal open, before Andy Carroll was somehow allowed to stay on the pitch after going in late, and studs up, from behind into Koscielny's leg, getting away with only a yellow.
It proved a costly decision for West Ham with Ozil putting Arsenal ahead four minutes later after being released by Iwobi’s pass, which enabled the German to calmly guide the ball past goalkeeper Adrian.
Ozil was pulling all the right strings and notes in midfield and the German maestro looked all but set to inspire Arsenal to another win. It all seemed to be going as planned , until Andy Carroll happened.
West Ham responded well to the goal , going close when Lanzini struck a volley narrowly wide from in-form Dimitri Payet's 31st minute corner, but Arsenal’s pace on the counter attack caused the home side countless problems and we doubled our lead on 35 minutes when Alexis Sanchez converted another Iwobi pass to put Arsenal into a commanding lead.
Carroll finally drew blood on 44 minutes, however, when he rose above Nacho Monreal to direct a powerful header past Ospina from Cresswell's cross. Perhaps Mertesaker would have been better suited for this game as he would have been able to at least match Carroll for aerial prowess.
On 50 minutes, Carroll looked to have teed up Payet for West Ham’s third, only to be penalised by referee Craig Pawson for man-handling Koscielny.
But two minutes later, West Ham did take the lead, with Carroll unsurprisingly claiming his hat-trick goal with a far post header from Michail Antonio’s cross.
Looking at the effect of that result on the Premier League race, it's clearly game over for Arsenal and the Premier League is now a two-horse race between rivals against dark horses Tottenham and potential champions Leicester City.
We can now forget about a late surge to the title – supporters held banners aloft at the end calling for Arsene Wenger and majority shareholder Stan Kroenke to go – and West Ham may have to focus solely on winning the FA Cup rather than ploughing energies into their pursuit of the top four.
Arsenal were the major losers of the weekend as a 2-1 win for Manchester City, a 1-0 win for Leicester City against struggling Sunderland and a superb 3-0 win for Spurs against United makes the bitter pill against West Ham even harder to swallow.
There goes Arsenal's season summed up in 90 minutes, it's all about staying safe in the top four right now. Realistically we are out of the title race, but mathematically we have a very slim chance and this is the Premier League, anything just can happen.