Arsenal looked to make it two impressive victories in a row as they hosted third-place Leicester City. Here are the player ratings.
Coming off a massive 2-0 victory over Wolverhampton, Arsenal had a premium opportunity to shake up the Premier League table if they could make it two in a row over Leicester City at the Emirates.
Leicester sat a comfortable nine points up on the Gunners in third place, with Arsenal finding their 8th place standing shaky as always, though the boost in confidence and momentum would work wonders to their claim to a European Cup spot. At this point, there is just no room for error anymore. Not with so much ground to make up.
Mikel Arteta didn’t bring out the changes in this one, mostly because he didn’t need to. He swapped Cedric Soares for Hector Bellerin and Alexandre Lacazette for Eddie Nketiah, but that’s just standard rotation. Other than that, the team stayed the same.
Arsenal clung to one point against Leicester City, but we deserved more
Arsenal came out of the gates strong, commanding play in the first 15 or so minutes, but the first real opportunity went Leicester City’s way just before the quarter-hour mark, calling Emiliano Martinez into making a tremendous kick save.
It only took five minutes for the Gunners to strike. A beautiful Dani Ceballos through ball pierced Leicester right through their heart, finding Bukayo Saka, who is the true genius of this goal, shaking his defender all the way to the ground before finding Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang for the finish. Beautiful.
Aubameyang nearly repaid the favor moments later after Lacazette spotted his run, but there just wasn’t enough on the pass.
It was almost all Arsenal up until half. They continued to thrum their attack and kept the pressure on the Foxes and their flimsy backline, though they were unable to double the lead before the break.
Much like it was against Wolves, though, Leicester came out of the half looking inspired and it didn’t take long to start kicking up nerves as they attacked the Arsenal backline. All of the momentum had been lost and the boys in red looked downright outmatched as they clung to their 1-0 lead.
Things got even dicier when Eddie Nketiah, freshly introduced to the match, got himself a red card that I’m still not convinced though have been. Then, magically, Leicester broke through and scored the equalizing goal when VAR ruled that Jamie Vardy was not offside, despite what appeared to be a clear touch from Ayoze Perez that would have made him exactly that.
Here are those player ratings:
Man of the Match. I love this guy. He reads the situation so well. He has yet to make me nervous since taking over the starting job. Made some excellent saves that kept us in ahead and made them look relatively easy.