David Moyes: We can have a go at Arsenal
David Moyes has called on his West Ham United players to ‘have a go’ at Arsenal when the two clubs meet at Emirates Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
The Hammers head to north London full of confidence after beating Southampton 3-1 last time out, with a commanding performance which saw them climb out of the bottom three.
While the Gunners themselves have been in improved form under the stewardship of Moyes’ old Everton playmaker Mikel Arteta, the Scot believes, with a near fully-fit squad available, that the Irons can make it back-to-back top-flight victories this weekend.
We have to get the players feeling they can do the most damage for us. We’ve got a bit of flexibility as well
“I would like to think we can have a go at every team,” he said, when asked how he would approach Saturday’s London derby in his pre-match press conference.
“I don’t think you can ever say we play one way; I don’t think that’s the case. I think the opposition dictate what you do as well. It would be completely naïve to think you can just go about it the same way [every week] but I also think you have to try get the best out of the players.
"I think our performance against Liverpool and our performance against Southampton have given us optimism about what we can do. We've got to keep those levels and standards up.
"We have to get the players feeling they can do the most damage for us. We’ve got a bit of flexibility as well.”
Arteta played under Moyes at Goodison Park for six years between 2005-11, joining for a bargain £2million fee from Real Sociedad and inspiring the Toffees to a succession of top-six Premier League finishes, before moving to Arsenal at the age of 29.
There, he won four trophies before retiring to join Pep Guardiola’s coaching staff at Manchester City in 2016 where he enjoyed further success before returning to Arsenal in December. Since then, the Gunners have lost just two of his 14 games in charge.
Aware of his tactical acumen, Moyes believes the Spaniard’s imprint is already evident in north London.
“I think that Arsenal are a changing team,” he observed, when asked to assess Saturday’s opponents. “I think Mikel will make changes, I think there’ll be changes over some windows no doubt, but I think you can see there is a design to Arsenal already.
“I think tactically, when you watch the way they play, there’s a little bit of Manchester City, which obviously comes from the years he’s worked with Pep. He’s taken a little bit of that, so I think… they’ve got a new manager who is trying to implement a style which he believes in.
“I think there is a style to their football. I think you need to probably give him a couple of windows at least to get some players who he feels would be right for their club and Mikel. He has got a really good coach with him in Steve Round.
"He is experienced now, or he is gaining experience in the job. But you can see already, he has already put some things in place at Arsenal which are starting to improve them.”