According to the Sun, Arsenal have been contacted by London rivals West Ham who are hoping to organise some friendly matches as the Hammers’ players gear up for the Premier League’s return.
It’s added that West Ham also sounded out Crystal Palace over this idea. As it stands the top-flight is set to return on June 17 after what will be a three-month hiatus due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
The Sun add that the Premier League have approved teams organising friendlies, however clubs must not travel further than 90 minutes and players would need to journey there alone and not together.
It’s claimed that the Irons have selected these two fellow London clubs as they’ve already played them twice in the Premier League this season, so there’s no fears that friendlies could hinder competitive matches between the sides.
Here is what Moyes had to say, as per the Sun:
“If you consider this a preseason, then a few clubs would have had a few friendlies under their belts.”
“If It is one thing the clubs are not going to get it’s game practice. So getting the opportunity to do that gives us the chance to do that.”
“All these things are subject to the protocols. We have to have everything right. We can’t ask teams to travel, we are not intending to travel.”
“We will abide by the guidelines. We don’t want anything to go wrong in the build up to the start of the Premier League.”
The Sun report that friendlies can take place at either clubs’ stadiums or training grounds.
The report doesn’t mention another factor that we suggest could be key to this proposal being accepted by both clubs – the relationship of Mikel Arteta and David Moyes.
Moyes was the Spaniard’s manager for his entire time at Everton, with the pair knowing each other, this seems like a fairly realistic action for the clubs to take.
Given the pair’s relationship you’d also think that there’s a much lesser chance that either club would leak any information from the proposed friendlies, this could be an ideal agreement for the two teams.