Arsenal helped by own goal West Ham goalkeeper and sloppy City, again goal Gakpo
Fortune is finally smiling on Arsenal again. Thanks in part to an own goal by Aston Villa goalkeeper Emiliano Martínez, world champion with Argentina, the Londoners recorded a 4-2 victory in injury time.
It is Arsenal’s first win this month. With two defeats and one draw, ‘The Gunners’ had risked the lead in the Premier League.
At the end of last month, Arsenal was well on its way to its first league title since 2004. But after February’s poor start, everything is different for manager Mikel Arteta’s team.
City squander points at Nottingham
The narrow victory in Birmingham comes as no surprise. Especially since Manchester City played carelessly and gave away a lead a few minutes before time at Nottingham Forest (1-1). As a result, the difference between Arsenal and City is two points. Moreover, Arsenal has played one less game.
Against Aston Villa, Arsenal twice came back from a deficit and then wanted more. That came in the third minute of injury time: 2-3. Jorginho shot from distance onto the crossbar and via the head of Argentina’s World Cup goalkeeper Martínez, who stood out in Qatar both with impressive saves and strange behavior, the ball bounced into the goal.
In the eighth minute of injury time, Martínez went forward with a corner kick in hopes of forcing the equalizer. But Arsenal was able to score on the counter through Gabriel Martinelli into the empty goal: 2-4.
City complain about refereeing after draw
The win felt even more pleasant for The Gunners when Manchester City had given away an almost certain win later in the afternoon on a visit to Nottingham Forest. Just before time, it was 1-1.
City had quite a lot to say about the refereeing afterwards, because of what they thought was a penalty kick that was not given, but Pep Guardiola will mostly blame his own players for losing points.
City had taken the lead through a nice, hard shot by Bernardo Silva, from about eighteen yards. But otherwise, City dealt with chances infrequently throughout the match. They should have been ahead by a zero or three long ago, when substitute Chris Wood ran in the 1-1 goal just before time.
The draw leaves the gap with Arsenal two points and City has played one more game. City must also slowly start looking down at the bottom, because if Manchester United wins Sunday against Leicester City, the city rival will be as close as three points.
Silence at Newcastle-Liverpool
English soccer night closed with the game between Newcastle United and Liverpool, where Cody Gakpo and Virgil van Dijk started in the base. Liverpool ended up winning quite easily (0-2), but it did not look like it would go that way at all for the first ten minutes. In fact, the match lasted only twenty minutes.
Newcastle started furiously. Bearing in mind the late Christian Atsu, who played soccer at Newcastle for five years, and was given a minute’s silence. And Sir Bobby Robson, who would have turned 90 today. The tribute with banner for Robson included a quote from the former coach, who died in 2009, about his love for Newcastle United.
“It’s the pride in your city, the little boy clambering up stage steps for the very first time, gripping his father’s hand, gawping at that hallowed stretch of turf beneath him and, without being able to do a thing about it, falling in love.“
Proud will have been the locals. To the first ten minutes then, in which their club put the visitors from Liverpool under considerable pressure. Alisson had to take serious action once, but suddenly Liverpool took the lead when Trent Alexander-Arnold put striker Darwin Nunez alone in front of the goalkeeper.
From then on, almost everything went wrong for Newcastle. Moments later, Cody Gakpo popped up behind the Newcastle defense, served by Mo Salah, to score his second Premier League goal after a quick touch and equally quick shot.
Curious red card
The drama became complete when Newcastle goalkeeper Nick Pope went completely wrong after a far out kick from Alisson. Pope came out, dived for the ball outside his penalty area with his head to get to it before Salah, but made hands. The curious action earned him a red. Match decided.