Sunday 16 April 2023

Arsenal's latest trick seems to be to overwhelm the opposition and then let them get back into the game. They did it at Liverpool, after a quick-fire start, and they did the same at West Ham.

The team news was not ideal pre-kick off, as Zinchenko was out with a muscular problem. In his place was Tierney, who's not had many starts this season.

After a slightly sluggish start, Arsenal began to cruise after taking the lead through Jesus's short-range finish from White's cross.

That lead was doubled by Odegaard, volleying home to convert Martinelli's high ball to the far post.

The game seemed in the bag. However, then Arsenal became casual in their approach.

Rice robbed Partey and eventually fed Parquetta, who was felled by Gabriel for a penalty. There was a suspicion of handball by Rice, but ultimately Arsenal deserved to concede, given their sudden complacency. Benrahma sent Ramsdale the wrong way and suddenly it was game on: no more looking at goal difference, when three points were far from certain. 

In the second half, Arsenal fans will learn whether or not lessons from Anfield have been learned.

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