Leicester City 2-0 Arsenal: Pressure mounts on Emery as Gunners disappoint again to fall nine points behind top four
- Credit: PA Wire/PA Images
The pressure on Unai Emery continues to mount as Arsenal lost 2-0 to Leicester City at the King Power Stadium on Saturday evening, leaving them nine points outside the top four after another desperately disappointing display.
The Foxes turned out to be the more clinical side in an end to end game, Jamie Vardy struck the opener after quick move on 68 minutes, before James Maddison made it 2-0 on 75 minutes with strike from the end of the box.
The defeat leaves the Gunners nine points off the top four, and put Unai Emery's job as serious risk as his side continue to struggle with little sign of turning things around.
Emery made one change from Wednesday's 1-1 draw with Vitoria Guimaraes in the Europa League, as Rob Holding kept his place.
The Spaniard also opted to stick with a back three, as David Luiz and Calum Chambers came into the defence, while there was also a first Premier League start of the season for Hector Bellerin.
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Leicester named their strongest side, with Jamie Vardy - who had scored eight goals in his last eight league starts against the Gunners - leading the line, while one-time Arsenal target Jonny Evans marshalled the defence.
The Foxes were seeing most of the ball early on, and although they failed to fashion any clear cut chances in the first 15 minutes, Vardy's pace was causing Emery's men problems.
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When Arsenal - who were clearly set up to contain and hit on the counter - did go forward they looked dangerous, and Alexandre Lacazette should have given them the lead from Bellerin's cross, but he put his close-range effort wide of the post.
The Gunners' inability to play out from the back nearly cost them on 26 minutes as Bellerin gave the ball away to Vardy who fed Ayoze Perez, but his shot from the edge of the box sailed just over.
Harvey Barnes then called Bernd Leno into action for the first time as he burst down the left and fired a low shot which the German held.
Leicester's grip on the game began to show, and Vardy should have tapped them ahead from Perez's delightful cross, but Chambers did just enough to put him off at the far post.
The sides went in level at the break, and the second-half continued in the same vein as the first, with Leicester seeing most the ball.
They came so close to opening the scoring on 48 minutes when Perez worked space inside the area and cut the ball back for Wilfred Ndidi, but the midfielder could only smash his shot against the bar.
Arsenal thought they had taken the lead on 54 minutes as Sead Kolasinac crossed for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to turn home, but the flag went up for offside against the striker and VAR agreed with the decision to rule it out.
The game was now end to end and a goal looked like it would come, it was just a case of who would get it.
It turned out to be the home side as they played some neat football in and around the box, eventually finding Vardy at the far post who slid the ball into the corner to open the scoring.
It was 2-0 just seven minutes later as Vardy caused the initial problem before laying the ball off for Maddison, who stroked the ball into the bottom corner from the edge of the box to secure a deserved victory for the hosts.