Search

Arsenal suffer rare home Premier League defeat as Manchester United go fourth

19:36 22 November 2014

Arsenal

Arsenal's Jack Wilshere reacts after suffering an injury during the game against Manchester United

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Arsenal 1 Manchester Utd 2

Arsenal slumped to their first home league defeat in over 15 months as Manchester United triumphed at the Emirates to go fourth in the table.

The Gunners dominated possession but failed to find the target – and were made to pay as United took the lead through a Kieran Gibbs own goal before Wayne Rooney sealed the points five minutes from time.

Although substitute Olivier Giroud marked his return from injury by reducing the deficit in added time, it was not enough to prevent Arsenal’s first league reverse at home since they lost to Aston Villa on the opening day of last season.

The first half was largely a litany of missed opportunities for Arsenal against a severely depleted United defence that was weakened further when Luke Shaw limped off after a quarter of an hour.

Per Mertesacker might have done better with an early header from a corner, while former United striker Danny Welbeck also nodded wide from Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s cross.

Welbeck had another couple of chances to punish his old club, one of them from an ambitious back-heel, but the Gunners’ clearest opportunity fell to Wilshere.

David de Gea’s clearance under pressure flew straight to Aaron Ramsey and he and Welbeck combined to play Wilshere in, but the goalkeeper redeemed himself with a low point-blank save.

Oxlade-Chamberlain also appeared to have got the better of de Gea when he ran on to Alexis Sanchez’s clever pass and rounded the keeper, only for the Spaniard to recover and get back to save.

The visitors, meanwhile, had to settle for rare counter-attacks and Angel di Maria went close with a curling attempt before setting up a chance for Wayne Rooney that was foiled by Calum Chambers’ challenge.

The pattern continued at the start of the second half as an exquisite pass from Wilshere released Welbeck, who cut in from the left but was foiled again by de Gea.

Then suddenly Arsenal’s fortunes took a triple knock as Wilshere limped off injured – and the 56th-minute incident that put them behind also deprived them of the services of Wojciech Szczesny.

Attempting to deal with Ashley Young’s cross, the keeper collided with team-mate Kieran Gibbs and Antonio Valencia fired back the loose ball, which struck the prostrate Gibbs and spun into the net.

With Emiliano Martinez replacing the injured Szczesny, the Gunners turned their attention back to the other end of the field and Sanchez might have levelled from Oxlade-Chamberlain’s cross.

But his finish flew straight at de Gea – as did Santi Cazorla’s volley a few minutes later – and Arsenal played their last card by bringing on Giroud for his comeback with 13 minutes remaining.

Although the home side piled on the pressure, they could not find a way through and United broke to seal victory with a second goal as di Maria set up Rooney to clip a calm finish beyond Martinez.

Di Maria could have completed the Gunners’ misery when he raced clear in added time, but stabbed wide with just Martinez to beat and, although Giroud promptly rifled in a left-foot thunderbolt at the other end, it was not enough.

Arsenal: Szczesny (Martinez 59); Chambers, Mertesacker, Monreal, Gibbs; Arteta; Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ramsey (Giroud 77), Wilshere (Cazorla 55), Sanchez; Welbeck.

Latest Islington Sports News

Fri, 20:11
Middlesex's Dawid Malan

Dawid Malan celebrated his first game as Middlesex’s T20 skipper with a classy knock of 93 as his side hammered Hampshire by 69 runs.

Fri, 07:15
New Zealand's Brendon McCullum hits out against England in 2015

James Franklin has warned that Middlesex cannot expect his former New Zealand team-mate Brendon McCullum to single-handedly transform their fortunes in one-day cricket.

Thu, 12:00
Rugby league player Aston Stephenson

There aren’t too many boys who grow up in north London and go to university in rugby union’s heartland – and then become rugby league internationals.

Thu, 10:00
Middlesex batsman Nick Gubbins

While it may be a cliché, to get a first-class hundred for the first time at Lord’s – the home of cricket – was an absolute dream come true.

Wed, 17:14
St Aloysius' RC College U14s won the ESFA PlayStation Cup at the Madejski Stadium, Reading

Left-back Prosper Keto headed in the only goal at Reading’s Madejski Stadium as St Aloysius’ Under-14s collected their first national 11-a-side trophy for 16 years.

Wed, 16:52
Summer Eytle-Rock (left) of Activities4U U12s

Summer Eytle-Rock produced another big game for Activities 4U Under-12s as the Islington side defeated Hackney Jedis 26-14 to book their place in the Community Basketball League play-off semi-finals.

Wed, 16:52
Beth Potter (right) is pursued by her British rivals Kate Avery and Jessica Andrews (second from left), who eventually won the race on the Parliament Hill athletics track. Pic: Mark Shearman

Former world record-holder Dave Bedford says Highgate Harriers’ Night of the 10,000m PBs is a “fascinating event” which is “of great value” to the world of athletics.

Wed, 13:27
Hornsey spinner Johnny Fawcett (left) exchanges high fives with Sam Solia

Hornsey spinner Johnny Fawcett blew away the Indian Gymkhana batting with the division’s first six-wicket haul of the season to put his side top of the Division Two table.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read sport

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

Win a BMW 1 series

There are fewer cars currently on the market more stylish and exciting than the BMW. Known all over the world as one of the best car manufacturers, the BMW is renowned for sleek designs and fantastic high quality workmanship.

Kindle 7 inch tablet

Are you looking for a brand new gadget to help you stay connected on the go and make that long journey home a bit more entertaining? Look no further. MyOffers is giving you the chance to win 1 of 50 Kindle Fire 7” Display Tablets! That’s 50 times more chances to win, so hurry up and enter our competition today and you could be one of our lucky winners!

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe