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  • PL on Citi: Aubameyang salvages a draw for Arsenal against Spurs

    first_img Source: Talk Sports Arsenal came back from two goals down against Tottenham to draw 2-2 in a pulsating north London derby on Sunday.Christian Eriksen and Harry Kane had given Spurs a comfortable lead before Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang pegged their rivals back.Aubameyang poaching in the equalizerSpurs have not won a league game at the Emirates Stadium since November 2010, but appeared on course to break that duck after Eriksen’s 50th Premier League goal and Kane’s penalty – his 10th goal in his last 10 games against Arsenal – put them in prime position to do so.But, after mistakes from Bernd Leno and Granit Xhaka had left them vulnerable, Unai Emery’s Gunners fought back, Lacazette pulling one back in first-half stoppage time before Aubameyang equalized in a frenetic second half.Neither side had a particularly good day defensively, despite Jan Vertonghen making his first appearance of the campaign for Tottenham, with boss Mauricio Pochettino shifting Davinson Sanchez to right-back after last weekend’s shock defeat at home to Newcastle.Arsenal also went into the game on the back of a loss, at Liverpool, and Emery responded by starting Aubameyang, Lacazette and big-money summer signing Nicolas Pepe together for the first time.Harry Kane extending Spurs’ lead through the spot-kickThe hosts enjoyed plenty of the ball in the opening stages, Pepe, in particular, looking sharp whenever in possession, but they could not force Hugo Lloris into any meaningful work.In contrast, Tottenham was ahead from their first genuine attack as Eriksen was on hand to tap home from point-blank range after Leno could only push Erik Lamela’s shot into the feet of the Dane, who has been heavily linked with a move away from Spurs before Monday’s European transfer deadline.The visitors were close to doubling their lead before the half-hour mark, David Luiz allowing Heung-min Son to run through at goal and unleash a curling effort that Leno did brilliantly to tip behind.Pepe – the brightest of Arsenal’s attacking trio in the first half-hour, bent a free-kick wide before Leno again failed to hold a fairly routine strike, this time only pawing Kane’s effort into Son before his cross was cleared.As he did with his error for the goal, Leno soon made amends as he dived full stretch to save an Eriksen free-kick.Lacazette celebrating after pulling one backThere was nothing he could do moments later when Spurs were awarded a penalty – Xhaka steaming in recklessly and diving in to challenge Son after the ball had gone.Kane stepped up and continued his fine goalscoring record in the derby by smashing the spot-kick home to double the lead.Lloris saved from Pepe but Lacazette, quiet by his standards in the opening 45 minutes, lashed home from six yards to half the deficit on the stroke of half-time.Arsenal again started the half on top but was reliant on a fine, low save from Leno to deny Son, with Lloris equalling his counterpart to push a Matteo Guendouzi strike behind.Sead Kolasinac could not make telling contact as the resulting corner dropped his way and Lacazette sent a speculative effort wide with the hosts rallying for a leveler.In an end-to-end contest, Kane rattled the inside of the post with a fine bending effort – but Aubameyang then drew Arsenal level with 20 minutes remaining as he prodded home Guendouzi’s perfectly weighted through ball.last_img read more

  • Arsenal inflict first domestic defeat on Solskjaer to surge into top four

    first_img0Shares0000Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang sealed Arsenal’s 2-0 win over Manchester United from the penalty spot © IKIMAGES/AFP / Ian KINGTONLONDON, United Kingdom, Mar 10 – Ole Gunnar Solskjaer blamed Manchester United’s lack of ruthlessness as the Norwegian suffered his first domestic defeat as caretaker manager in a 2-0 loss at Arsenal on Sunday.Granit Xhaka’s early strike and Pierre Emerick-Aubameyang’s penalty 21 minutes from time saw Gunners leapfrog United into the Premier League top four. Unai Emery’s men also close to within just a point of third-placed Tottenham and now hold the upper hand in the race for Champions League qualification.Arsenal do not face any of the top six in their remaining eight league games, whilst United host title-chasing Manchester City and Chelsea in the coming weeks on top of their Champions League and FA Cup commitments.“You have to be disappointed with the result, but the performance was a good one,” said Solskjaer.“The first goal always dictates how the game goes. We created chances, big chances, hit the woodwork twice, (Bernd) Leno played well.“In terms of what you can control, we shouldn’t be too disappointed.”European trips to France for both sides in midweek produced vastly contrasting results as United shocked free-spending Paris Saint-Germain 3-1 to progress to the quarter-finals of the Champions League.The Gunners on the other hand went down 3-1 to Rennes to give themselves a mountain to climb in Thursday’s second leg to reach the last eight of the Europa League.Emery made five changes from that side and was rewarded with a vital victory.“We are going to play difficult matches and being consistent is very important,” said Emery. “At the moment I think we are playing consistently, but we need to be calm and patient.”– De Gea not distracted –After a bright start, Arsenal were nearly hit with a sucker punch when with United’s first attack, Romelu Lukaku turned Luke Shaw’s cross onto the crossbar for the first of a series of wasted chances for the Belgian striker.However, at the other end it was the normally flawless David de Gea who was at fault for the opener as the Spaniard failed to read the swerve on Xhaka’s long-range strike 12 minutes in.Solskjaer, though, rejected suggestions ongoing contract talks over a new deal for the United goalkeeper has effected his concentration.“David’s really focused and concentrated, he’s too professional to let his mind wander,” insisted Solskjaer.United seemed to feel the after-effects of their heroics in Paris early on, but soon clicked into gear to look more like the side that had suffered just one defeat in Solskjaer’s first 17 games in charge.Fred’s curling effort from outside the box clipped the post before Lukaku tried to round Bernd Leno, but the Arsenal goalkeeper stood up well to block.The German stopper had an unconvincing start to life as Arsenal number one, but has looked ever more assured in recent weeks and made another huge save to deny Lukaku once more from close range six minutes into the second-half.United were utterly dominant for the first 20 minutes of the second period, but to Solskjaer’s frustration conceded a penalty when Alexandre Lacazette charged into the area and hit the floor under minimal contact from Fred.“I don’t think there is enough contact to warrant the penalty,” said Solskjaer, while even Emery categorised the award as “soft.”Aubameyang missed a last-minute penalty to win the north London derby against Tottenham last weekend, but made no mistake to leave the visitors a mountain to climb.“I knew it would be tough, but I was really confident,” said the Gabon international.Solskjaer’s time at United as a player and over the past three months as boss has been littered with late drama, none more so than at PSG on Wednesday.That was a Champions League night that will live long in the memory, but there was no turnaround this time to leave the Red Devils with plenty of work to do just to qualify for the competition next season.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

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