Sunday sees the four Premier League teams to have appointed new managers over the summer all in action, with the early match a London derby as West Ham welcome Chelsea.
The Hammers finally got off the mark last weekend with a 3-1 victory at Everton and Manuel Pellegrini has understandably appeared far more chipper this week.
A 1-0 win in this fixture last term kick-started West Ham’s 2017-18 season and also wrote off Chelsea’s title defence but the Blues head along the Thames in fine fettle. Maurizio Sarri’s side have won all five of their Premier League matches, although they have looked susceptible at the back.
Sarri fielded a surprisingly strong team in Thursday’s Europa League win against PAOK but the league remains his focus, as demonstrated by his decision to leave Eden Hazard out.
The Belgian enjoyed an excellent World Cup and after being eased back in, already has six goals in as many games for club and country, including a hat-trick last weekend against Cardiff.
Hazard appears to be a man in his prime and seems to be responding well to the responsibility of having the captaincy.
Both Arsenal and Everton are finding their feet under new coaches and Unai Emery and Marco Silva are still to master their respective roles.
The Gunners have won their last four in all competitions, while despite a decent start, the Toffees were outclassed by the Hammers and that result turned a decent start into a relatively mediocre one.
Everton have not won away at Arsenal since 1996 and with that in mind, and the 10-3 aggregate advantage the Londoners enjoyed between these two last year, it is tough to look past the home win with goals on both sides in the 4pm game.
It is one of the quirks of the game how certain players thrive against particular teams and Aaron Ramsey seems to have something on the Toffees, netting a hat-trick in last season’s 5-1 victory, while he has five in the last three meetings between the clubs.
The Welshman has had a mixed season to date but can be unplayable at times and could once again thrive against a team who are likely to give him the space to roam.
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