Will Arsenal Sell 8 Players In The Summer?

Arsenal are threatening to axe any of their players entering the final two years of their contract moving forward. nd that could see a host of their best players SOLD in a dramatic new strategy to avoid stars running down their deals. The Gunners have suffered in recent years with the likes of Aaron Ramsey and Jack Wilshere walking away on free transfers. At their age with their ability, Arsenal have missed out on huge fees by not tying them down to contract extensions or selling before the final year of their deals. Negotiations were drawn out with both and Arsenal ultimately had to offload Sanchez in January 2018, letting him leave for Manchester United in a swap deal for Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

Ozil eventually agreed a new deal but Arsenal smashed their wage structure in the process by handing him a £350,000-a-week contract. The 30-year-old playmaker has since been far from a regular in the side under Unai Emery this season. With the Premier League transfer window now open, Arsenal are assessing current situations with their first-team squad. Danny Welbeck looks on course to follow Juventus-bound Ramsey out the door on a free following his latest injury-hit campaign. But crucially, the club’s three top earners in Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Ozil and Mkhitaryan are all under contract for two more years.

Others with the same or shorter deals at the Emirates are captain Laurent Koscielny along with fellow defenders Shkodran Mustafi, Nacho Montreal, Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Stephan Lichtsteiner. Arsenal’s ageing defence needs an overhaul is expected to be addressed by Emery during the window. The current wage bill is now close to £240m, so the club will tell those players to either sign up or move on. Arsenal hope to overhaul their squad to give Emery the best chance of improving on their fifth-place finish. But victory in next Wednesday’s Europa League final against Chelsea is pivotal, as they will have a transfer budget of just £45m if they lose in Baku, Azerbaijan and subsequently miss out on Champions League qualification.

Burnley 1 Arsenal 3

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored twice as Arsenal beat Burnley at Turf Moor, but the Gunners failed to finish in the top four for the third successive season. Unai Emery’s side secured fifth place meaning they go straight into the Europa League group stage next season. And they can still qualify for the Champions League if they beat Chelsea in the Europa League final on 29 May in Baku. Aubameyang, who scored a hat-trick on Thursday as Arsenal beat Valencia in the Europa League semi-finals, finished the season with 22 league goals. That saw him tie for the Premier League Golden Boot with Liverpool duo Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah.

Ben Mee gifted Aubameyang his first, miscontrolling a pass from Jack Cork to allow the Gabon striker to run in and slot past Tom Heaton on 52 minutes. He then lashed in a volley from close range 11 minutes later and should have had a hat-trick, but with the goal at his mercy, he poked wide. Burnley, who had already secured a fourth straight season in the Premier League, pulled one back as Ashley Barnes met Johann Berg Gudmundsson’s pass with a glancing header. Arsenal’s 19-year-old forward Eddie Nketiah added a third with the last play of the game in the 95th minute as he poked the ball through Heaton’s legs.

To finish in the top four, Arsenal needed to beat Burnley and hope rivals lost against Tottenham – while also achieving an get a house loan with bad credit eight-goal swing. As it was, Spurs drew 2-2 with Everton to take the final Champions League place, a point ahead of Arsenal. They have now finished below Tottenham in three consecutive league campaigns for the first time since a run of nine seasons from 1959-60 to 1967-1968. The Burnley win did at least snap a run of four games without a win in the league. Emery made nine changes from the side that beat Valencia 4-2, with only Aubameyang and Nacho Monreal keeping their place.

Arsenal Linked With A Few Exciting Players

Arsenal are reportedly one of the sides getting closer to signing Adrien Rabiot. The PSG midfielder is out of contract at the end of the season, and according to L’Equipe, the Gunners are among the teams closing in on the 24-year-old. One of the prime reasons for that is Unai Emery, who has a good working relationship with Rabiot from his time at PSG. Real Madrid are also said to be interested, though no concrete offer has been made, while Manchester United are considering a move should they decide to sell Paul Pogba.

Lille president Gerard Lopez also admitted that the interest in Pepe had grown to such an extent that the club would need to sell him to take advantage of his high price. But according to Sport Bild, he will not be joining Bayern Munich, with the German giants dropping their interest in the Ivory Coast international. Arsenal are known to be interested in signing the winger, but a transfer would come down to the fee Lille demand, with the Gunners unlikely to be willing to pay their desired sum of £70m. PSV are ready to sell wingers Steven Bergwijn and Hirving Lozano this summer, but are hoping to recoup a minimum of €60m-€70m for the pair. Arsenal have also been linked with Mexico international Lozano, but Napoli are said to currently be in pole position – though no official offer has been made.

Bournemouth winger Ryan Fraser is reportedly “open to offers” this summer, with Arsenal currently said to be heading the charge to sign the Scotland international. Fraser has scored seven goals in the Premier League this season, and set up a further 14, with only Eden Hazard contributing more in Europe’s top five leagues. While Bournemouth are hopeful of convincing Fraser to stay, the 25-year-old feels that this summer is the ideal time for a new challenge, according to the Mail. Arsenal are known to be keen on the winger and are in pole position, but Spurs, Chelsea and Newcastle are all said to be monitoring the situation.

Liverpool have reportedly joined the race to sign Ajax winger David Neres, who is also a target of Chelsea and Arsenal. The 22-year-old has played a large role in the Dutch side’s fabulous season, which could potentially see them complete a momentous treble, having won the KNVB Cup, sitting top of the league with two games to play and on the brink of reaching the Champions League final. Ajax paid £13m to sign Neres from Sao Paolo in 2016, and stand to make a healthy profit on the Brazilian.

Arsenal 1 Brighton 1

Arsenal’s focus is now on the Europa League, says boss Unai Emery, after his lacklustre side’s hopes of a top-four Premier League finish were effectively ended by a draw with Brighton. The Gunners are three points behind Tottenham in fourth with one game to play but would need an eight-goal swing, as well as results going their way, to overtake their rivals. Barring that highly improbable scenario, Arsenal will need to win the Europa League to play in the Champions League next season and take a 3-1 advantage into their semi-final second-leg in Valencia on Thursday. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang put Arsenal in front at Emirates Stadium with a ninth-minute penalty after Alireza Jahanbakhsh was judged to have fouled Nacho Monreal despite appearing to get the ball.

Aside from occasional bursts, Emery’s side were shaky and sloppy, with Granit Xhaka committing an absurd foul on Solly March to concede a penalty that Glenn Murray converted on 61 minutes. Arsenal frantically searched for a winner but Aubameyang volleyed wide from seven yards out and Brighton keeper Mat Ryan made a series of fine saves.Pascal Gross could have won the game for Brighton late on but skewed his effort out towards the sideline with the goal unmanned after Bernd Leno’s superb save from March, while the visitors withstood another flurry from Arsenal in the final stages. Looking to avoid a fourth straight Premier League defeat, Arsenal made a bright start in attack, though were fortunate to be awarded a penalty, despite referee Anthony Taylor being well placed, with replays showing Jahanbakhsh got to the ball before Monreal fell.Still, an early lead through Aubameyang’s 20th league goal of the season should have allowed the hosts to exert control over the game, but instead they became nervy and vulnerable.

Goalkeeper Leno sent an abysmal clearance straight to March before recovering to save Murray’s free header moments later, while Stephan Litchtsteiner, making his first appearance since late February, was frequently exposed. There was another promising spell at the end of the first half, with Aubameyang, Shkodran Mustafi and Henrikh Mkhitaryan testing Ryan, but Arsenal’s inability to create clear chances gave Brighton increasing confidence in finding an equaliser. Even then it took a staggeringly poor decision by personal loans online no credit check Xhaka. Running behind the surging March inside the area, the Switzerland midfielder initially held up his hands to indicate he was not touching the Brighton forward only to then whack his shoulder and concede a penalty.

Arsenal 3 Valencia 1

Alexandre Lacazette scored twice as Arsenal came from behind at Emirates Stadium to win the first leg of their Europa League semi-final against Valencia. Mouctar Diakhaby’s header put Valencia in front before Lacazette slotted in Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s pass. The Frenchman nodded in Granit Xhaka’s cross seven minutes later to make it 2-1 before half-time. And Aubameyang’s late volley ensured Arsenal take a two-goal lead to Spain. Lacazette should have scored a hat-trick – he fluffed a header from six yards out in the second half and was later denied by goalkeeper Neto on two occasions. But Arsenal will travel to Valencia for the second leg next Thursday, hoping to avoid a second successive semi-final defeat after they were knocked out by eventual winners Atletico Madrid last year.

Arsenal started sloppily in London and Ezequiel Garay’s miss from a few yards out was an early warning. cash flow system They looked rattled, and things looked bleak for the Gunners when Rodrigo was allowed to head the ball back across goal to set up Diakhaby for the opener. A loose header from Ainsley Maitland-Niles was almost pounced upon by Goncalo Guedes immediately afterwards but Lacazette’s swift equaliser – which came against the run of play – helped settle the nerves. He started the move himself, providing the through ball for Aubameyang before the Gabonese striker cut it back into the middle and Lacazette fired into an empty net. The Frenchman was clinical again eight minutes later – powerfully nodding in Xhaka’s curling cross at the back post – before Aubameyang’s volley bounced off the turf and over the bar.

Valencia still caused Arsenal problems though. Rodrigo and Guedes were pests in attack and Petr Cech was called into action to deny Kevin Gameiro from close range in the second half. Arsenal were wasteful, too – Lacazette missing two glorious chances before Aubameyang eventually made it 3-1 with a well-timed volley at the back post. Arsenal’s hopes of securing Champions League football next season have been lifted by this victory. Three successive defeats have left Arsenal fifth in the Premier League – one place below Champions League qualification and two points below Chelsea with two games remaining. Arsenal can of course reach the Champions League by winning this competition, but Chelsea could stand in their way again if they make it to final in Baku.

Leicester 3 Arsenal 0

Jamie Vardy scored twice as Leicester dented Arsenal’s hopes of qualifying for the Champions League with a dominant victory at the King Power Stadium. The unmarked Youri Tielemans headed in a cross from James Maddison just before the hour mark, then Vardy struck late on with a header and a tap-in from close range. Arsenal played almost an hour of the contest with 10 men after Ainsley Maitland-Niles was sent off. A third successive Premier League defeat left them two points behind fourth-placed Chelsea, who drew 1-1 with Manchester United at Old Trafford in Sunday’s late kick-off.

Leicester can still finish seventh – they are three points behind Wolves with two matches left – which could earn a Europa League place depending on the outcome of the FA Cup final. Arsenal’s task was made significantly more difficult after Maitland-Niles was sent off for the first time in his career following two bookings in the space of 28 minutes – for a soft foul on Ben Chilwell and then needlessly scything down loans for people on ssi Maddison near the halfway line. However, a three-goal margin flattered Arsenal and, even with a full complement of players, it is difficult to envisage a different outcome such was the conviction of the performance of Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester.

Arsenal were indebted to goalkeeper Bernd Leno for a string of fine saves, the pick a magnificent one-handed diving effort to paw away a Wilfred Ndidi header. Arsenal fans must be fed up with the sight of Vardy, such is the former England’s striker’s potency against them. He has scored eight goals in as many matches against the Gunners – and now has 10 in his past nine appearances against any opposition. While much has been made of the young squad that Rodgers will seek mould at Leicester, 32-year-old Vardy remains an influential presence. On the evidence of this performance, it appears as much as mindset issue as personnel for Unai Emery’s side. Where the Gunners brim with vim and vigour in the confines of Emirates Stadium, that seemingly dissipates on the road as caution infects their approach.

Wolves 3 Arsenal 1

Arsenal missed the chance to go fourth in the Premier League as they were outplayed by Wolves at Molineux. Ruben Neves put the hosts ahead with a direct free-kick from 25 yards before Matt Doherty headed in a second. Diogo Jota added a third just before half-time after the Gunners gave the ball away and he ran at the away defence before firing a shot under goalkeeper Bernd Leno. Arsenal defender Sokratis headed in from Granit Xhaka’s corner in the 80th minute but it was not enough for the Gunners. The victory takes Wolves up from 10th to seventh, while Arsenal remain fifth, one point adrift of fourth-placed Chelsea and four behind north London rivals Tottenham.

With three games left of the season, Wolves are in contention to qualify for Europe. If Manchester City beat Watford in the FA Cup final the team finishing seventh in the Premier League will take the last available European spot and enter next season’s Europa League at the second qualifying round phase. Wolves’ win continues a remarkable campaign for Nuno Espirito Santo’s side in their first season since winning promotion from the Championship. The hosts went into the match without a win in three games in all competitions but were on top even when the game was goalless as Joao Moutinho curled wide from 25 yards and Raul Jimenez just failed to connect with Jonny’s through ball.

Neves then gave Wolves a deserved lead in the 28th minute with a fine free-kick after Nacho Monreal had clumsily bundled over Jonny in a central position. A well-worked move from a short corner – albeit with Arsenal’s defenders not applying pressure – left Jonny with space to cross and Doherty got to the ball before Leno to head into the net and double his side’s lead. Another Arsenal error led to Wolves’ third as the ball was given away to Jota, who drove forward and shot under Leno, who should have done better. This win means Wolves have picked up 16 points in their matches against the current top six this season, a record that includes wins over Tottenham, Chelsea, Manchester United and now Arsenal. Wolves are also aiming to become the first newly promoted side to finish in the top eight since Reading finished eighth in 2005-06, while no promoted team has finished higher than that since Ipswich Town were fifth in 2000-01.

Edu To Become Arsenal Director & Bring Gabriel Martinelli

Former Arsenal midfielder Edu is set to return to the club as their new technical director, according to reports. The 40-year-old, who was a key part of Arsenal’s 2003-04 Invincibles side, is currently the general coordinator for Brazil’s national teams. According to the Daily Mail, the Gunners view Edu as the perfect candidate to become their technical director after they were snubbed by Monchi, who returned to Sevilla last month. Edu would not join Arsenal until after Brazil’s Copa America campaign finishes in the summer, but it’s understood that the Gunners are prepared to wait.

The report also claims that Arsenal are also lining up Brazilian forward Gabriel Martinelli as their first summer signing. Martinelli, a right-sided attacker who plays for Brazilian side Ituano, is reportedly on the verge of agreeing a deal with Arsenal. Last month, reports claimed that Arsenal had offered £5 million for the 17-year-old. This fits with rumours in late March, when it was claimed Arsenal had finalised a deal to sign the player, but they were just waiting on Martinelli obtaining his Italian passport. There have been differing reports on how long that would take, with some rumours he’ll have it this month, and others that it won’t be until June. Martinelli drew a lot of attention in this year’s Campeonato Paulista, as he scored six goals and assisted three in 14 appearances. That put him just one goal off the competition’s top scorer and two assists off the top assist provider, despite his age.

After being released in Spain, Edu signed a contract with his former club, the Corinthians, on 6 August 2009, which was to last until 31 December 2011. After playing four matches during the 2010 season, his contract was terminated by mutual consent, and Edu announced his retirement from professional football. On 17 March 2011, Corinthians announced that Edu would take over from William Machado as the club’s director of football. He also assisted Carlos Queiroz’s Iranian national team during the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Arsenal 2 Crystal Palace 3

Arsenal’s hopes of a top-four finish were dented after Christian Benteke’s first goal in a year helped Crystal Palace to an excellent win which confirmed their Premier League place. Benteke was left unmarked to head Luka Milivojevic’s delivery past Bernd Leno, only for Mesut Ozil to equalise with a clever finish shortly after half-time. However, two goals in eight minutes ended Arsenal’s 10-match winning league run at Emirates Stadium. Wilfried Zaha capitalised on a mistake by Shkodran Mustafi to restore Palace’s lead and James McArthur’s header made it 3-1 before Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang reduced the deficit with his 19th league goal of the season.

With Manchester United on the receiving end of a hammering at Everton earlier in the day, and Tottenham losing at Manchester City the previous day, this was an ideal opportunity for the Gunners to take a big step towards securing a Champions League place. Yet Unai Emery’s side were punished for an awful defensive performance as they fell to only a second home league defeat under the Spaniard. The marking for Benteke’s goal was non-existent, Mustafi’s failed attempt to block Zaha ended in embarrassment and a second Palace goal, while McArthur was also left unmarked to head home the third. Captain Laurent Koscielny and leading scorer Aubameyang were starting their third game in eight days but this was an under-par performance by a team looking to finish in the top four for the first time in three seasons.

The Gunners monopolised possession but it required a double change at half-time to help them get back on level terms after Benteke’s header separated the teams at the interval. Alex Iwobi, one of the substitutes, was involved in Ozil’s lovely equaliser, his pass finding Alexandre Lacazette to set up the German. That should have been the signal to push on, yet Arsenal fell away and, despite a late rally which saw Aubameyang score, will fall out of the top four if Chelsea beat Burnley at Stamford Bridge on Monday.

Napoli 0 Arsenal 1

Arsenal keeper Petr Cech says his side made a “very difficult” trip to Napoli “look easy” to seal a 3-0 aggregate win and reach the Europa League last four. Alexandre Lacazette’s first-half free-kick into the top corner earned victory on the night after the hosts had had the better of the early chances. “We controlled the game really well and defended really well too,” said Cech. The Gunners will host Valencia in the first leg of their semi-final on Thursday, 2 May (20:00 BST kick-off). Cech, who is retiring as a player this summer, saved well from Jose Callejon, while Arkadiusz Milik had a goal ruled out for offside – but otherwise the Serie A side struggled to make an impression.

“Napoli are a fantastic team who always score a lot of goals, especially here at home, so to keep two clean sheets is obviously something [positive],” added the 36-year-old Czech. “It was a very difficult game but we made it look easier because we played really well.” It ensured a comfortable night’s work for the Gunners as Unai Emery marked his 50th game as their manager. Arsenal, who arrived at the Stadio San Paolo with a 2-0 lead from the first leg at Emirates Stadium, could have doubled their margin of victory on the night but home goalkeeper Alex Meret superbly saved from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang after the break.

The only negative aspect of the evening for Arsenal was Aaron Ramsey hobbling off with a suspected hamstring injury. The Wales midfielder was withdrawn in the first half and will be a doubt for the club’s remaining fixtures before his summer move to Juventus. When it comes to the Europa League knockout stages, Emery has an unequalled managerial record – 26 wins. And his know-how from winning the tournament three seasons in a row from 2013-14 while manager of La Liga side Sevilla came to the fore in the second leg. While the 2-0 advantage from the first leg gave Arsenal room for manoeuvre, there were few thoughts of simply playing to contain their opponents.

Deploying a three-man defence allowed them to initially take the game to their hosts as Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Sead Kolasinac pressed forward and Lucas Torreira and Ramsey controlled proceedings in midfield. Napoli did respond but Lacazette’s goal signalled the end of the home pressure and settled any lingering Arsenal nerves.

Watford 0 Arsenal 1

A Ben Foster howler and a needless Troy Deeney red card helped Arsenal climb back into the Premier League top four with victory at Watford. Goalkeeper Foster gifted the Gunners an opening goal after 10 minutes when he took too long on the ball after collecting a back pass, allowing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to charge down his clearance and deflect the ball in. Just a minute later, Watford captain Deeney was sent off for throwing his forearm into the face of Arsenal midfielder Lucas Torreira in a late challenge. Despite playing with 10 men for 80 minutes, Watford offered the far greater threat, hitting the bar through Adam Masina’s powerful drive from distance in the second half, and forcing Arsenal goalkeeper Bernd Leno into a number of excellent saves.

The German denied Craig Cathcart well with his feet shortly after Deeney’s red card – and later in the first half dived at full stretch to tip away Etienne Capoue’s goalbound free-kick. Ainsley Maitland-Niles also produced a crucial block with 10 minutes remaining when he slid in to block Andre Gray’s shot after the Watford striker had rounded Leno. The visitors’ only real chance came midway through the second half but Foster brilliantly spread himself to block Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s volley from close range. The Gunners were well below their best but the rare away win could prove crucial in the race to qualify for next season’s Champions League. They climb two places to fourth in the table, two points clear of Manchester United and ahead of Chelsea on goal difference.

Watford they were left ruing two foolish incidents within 95 seconds of each other. There seemed little danger when Foster collected a back pass just outside his six-yard box but he dawdled on the ball allowing the pacey Aubameyang enough time to close him down. Deeney’s foul was not vicious or particularly dangerous, but foolish and unnecessary. He chased down Torreira deep in the Arsenal half and after the Uruguayan had passed the ball threw his forearm into his opponent’s face.

Arsenal 2 Napoli 0

Arsenal’s Europa League quarter-final tie with Napoli is “still 50-50” according to Gunners boss Unai Emery, despite his side winning the first leg 2-0 at Emirates Stadium. Aaron Ramsey converted Ainsley Maitland-Niles’ pass to finish off a good team move and give the hosts the lead. Kalidou Koulibaly then scored an own goal when he deflected Lucas Torreira’s shot past goalkeeper Alex Meret. The impressive Meret stopped the Gunners winning by more. Napoli, who are second in Serie A, host the Gunners in the second leg next Thursday at the San Paolo Stadium (20:00 BST). “The first leg was very important to take a good result,” said Emery. “We deserved to win, but we know it is going to be very difficult there.

“Their performances at home are usually very strong. We will plan to win the match, but we need to have a lot of respect for them. It is still 50-50. Our challenge is to be competitive away. Sometimes away we lose the spirit we have at home.” Napoli boss Carlo Ancelotti said he is still “confident” of progressing to the last four. The only downside of an impressive Arsenal performance is that they did not win by more than two goals to kill the tie off. Ramsey, who is joining Napoli’s Serie A rivals Juventus on a free transfer at the end of the season, had a good game and opened the scoring. A flowing team move from the halfway line involving Mesut Ozil and Alexandre Lacazette resulted in Ramsey slotting home Maitland-Niles’ flicked pass from six yards. Torreira helped double their lead when he won the ball off Fabian Ruiz and cut inside the midfielder before hammering in a 20-yard shot which deflected off Koulibaly and was later given as an own goal.

Wales midfielder Ramsey had another two good shots saved by Meret – who also denied Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang three times. Aubameyang was back in the starting line-up after recovering from an illness which has meant he can only be a substitute in recent games. The Gunners continued to push for a third goal after the break and Maitland-Niles’ shot on the bounce was expertly tipped over the bar by Italy Under-21 international Meret – before Ramsey smashed an effort over from 12 yards. Arsenal boss Emery, who won the tournament three years in a row as Sevilla boss, will hope their dominance at Emirates Stadium is enough to take them into the semi-finals, where they would face Villarreal or Valencia. Another bonus of winning the tournament would be a place in next season’s Champions League, with the Gunners currently outside the Premier League’s top four by one point.

Everton 1 Arsenal 0

Phil Jagielka scored the only goal as Everton beat Arsenal at Goodison Park to claim their third consecutive Premier League win. Jagielka, who was called into the starting XI as a replacement for Michael Keane shortly before kick-off, poked home early on following Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s header from Lucas Digne’s long throw. Arsenal were poor in the first half and, while they did improve in the second, they never seriously tested Jordan Pickford in the Toffees goal. Everton, meanwhile, had plenty of chances to double their lead in the second half as Bernard, Richarlison and Gylfi Sigurdsson all spurned chances. Victory for Everton means they leapfrog Watford into ninth while Arsenal remain in fourth.

Everton only announced Jagielka was starting 15 minutes before kick-off – a late replacement for Keane who dropped out of the matchday squad due to illness. But it only took the club captain 10 minutes to get on the scoresheet as he capitalised on confusion in the Arsenal box to fire home his first goal since April 2017 from close range. The hosts went on to dominate for much of the first half with Brazilian pair Richarlison and Bernard causing problems as they found plenty of space in behind the Gunners’ wing-backs.

While the visitors did improve after the break with the introduction of Aaron Ramsey and Pierre Emerick-Aubemeyang, the Toffees were still largely the better side. Bernard should have doubled his side’s lead on 59 minutes when an error by Ainsley Maitland-Niles presented him with a one-on-one with Bernd Leno which the keeper saved well. And there were more chances for the hosts as the game drew to a close, too, as Sigurdsson could only shoot straight at Leno from Richarlison’s cut-back, while the Brazilian skewed his own effort wide with the goal gaping.

There were further opportunities for Bernard, Andre Gomes and substitute Theo Walcott as the Toffees piled on the pressure but they could not find a second goal. However, they were not made to pay for their lack of cutting edge as they claimed a victory which sees them string together three consecutive league wins for only the second time this season and the first since October.

Arsenal 2 Newcastle United 0

Arsenal beat Newcastle at Emirates Stadium to move above Manchester United and north London rivals Tottenham and go third in the Premier League. Aaron Ramsey, who had an earlier effort disallowed following a foul, put the hosts ahead with a fine low strike from 15 yards out. Newcastle’s Matt Ritchie produced a diving header on the goalline to deny Alexandre Lacazette, but the Frenchman doubled Arsenal’s lead late on when he calmly lofted the ball over goalkeeper Martin Dubravka. The visitors’ best chance fell to Salomon Rondon and his low shot was pushed wide by Arsenal goalkeeper Bernd Leno. Arsenal were 10 points behind Tottenham at the start of February but this victory took the Gunners two points clear of fourth-placed Spurs and United in fifth with seven league games remaining.

This was a 10th home league victory in a row for Arsenal, their best run since a similar sequence from December 1997 to May 1998, as Unai Emery’s team continued a strong second half of the season that could see them secure a return to Champions League action after a two-year absence. Arsene Wenger’s 22-year spell in charge of the Gunners ended with regular protests among the fans as they watched their team drift away from Europe’s elite. But Emery, in his first year in the English game, has galvanised the side with his brand of free-flowing attacking football and this result took them to 63 points – the same that the Gunners managed under Wenger in all of 2017-18. Arsenal started with top scorer Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on the bench, but they still had 71% possession and were simply too strong for their opponents. The hosts thought they had taken a 12th-minute lead, but Ramsey’s volley was ruled out as Sokratis was adjudged to have fouled Florian Lejeune.

But the Welshman, who missed his country’s two matches during the international break, scored 17 minutes later with a low strike after DeAndre Yedlin’s clearance inadvertently fell into Ramsey’s path. The home fans were nearly celebrating again just before half-time, but Lacazette’s powerful effort was spectacularly headed off the line by Ritchie with Dubravka beaten. After Sokratis headed wide and substitute Aubameyang had a shot saved, Arsenal got the second goal they deserved through Lacazette’s calm finish after Aubameyang’s flicked-on header set up the chance. The only negative from the evening was Ramsey, who will join Juventus on a free transfer in the summer, going off with an injury midway through the second half. Despite the Gunners fluidity, there was only a combined total of 10 shots from both sides, the fewest in a Premier League game since the nine efforts in the Bournemouth versus Leicester match in August 2015.

Ospina Collapses After Head Injury

Arsenal goalkeeper David Ospina was taken to hospital after collapsing during Napoli’s Serie A match against Udinese on Sunday. The Colombian, on a season-long loan at Napoli, sustained a blow to the head when he collided with Ignacio Pussetto early in the match. He then fell to the ground shortly before the break after Udinese levelled at 2-2 having been 2-0 down. The 30-year-old received treatment before he was brought off the field. Napoli, who beat Udinese 4-2, later released a statement revealing that Ospina would remain in hospital overnight under observation.

Coach Carlo Ancelotti said: “Fortunately it’s generic priligy nothing serious, he’s conscious. They did a CAT scan that is negative.” Ospina signed for the Gunners in July 2014 but has only made 27 league appearances for the Premier League side. He joined Napoli on a season-long loan deal in August 2018. It is not yet known whether he will remain part of the Colombia squad which is due to face Japan on Friday and South Korea on Mar. 26.

Arsenal 2 Manchester United 0

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer suffered his first Premier League defeat since being appointed Manchester United’s interim manager as Arsenal leapfrogged their opponents to move into the top four. Switzerland midfielder Granit Xhaka beat David de Gea with a swerving shot from outside the penalty area, which the United keeper was expected to stop. Romelu Lukaku hit the bar while the game was goalless, when it appeared easier to score, and, soon after Arsenal took the lead, Brazilian midfielder Fred struck a post for United. Arsenal keeper Bernd Leno also produced two crucial saves to keep out Lukaku, before Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang doubled the hosts’ lead from the penalty spot after Fred’s foul on Alexandre Lacazette.

Soon after Arsenal’s second goal, a fan ran on to the pitch and shoved United defender Chris Smalling before being removed by stewards. The Gunners have won seven out of 10 top-flight games in 2019 and are one point behind north London rivals Tottenham, who sit third in the table, with eight games remaining. United, who started the weekend in fourth, drop to fifth in the race for a Champions League spot next season. Last weekend, Aubameyang left Wembley dejected after his last-minute penalty was saved by Spurs keeper Hugo Lloris to deny Arsenal victory in the North London derby. Against United, he stepped forward and beat De Gea from the spot to seal a first victory over the Red Devils in five league and cup meetings. It was awarded after Fred’s forearm nudged into Lacazette, sending the French forward tumbling inside the box. Lacazette inspired one of Arsenal’s finest days under Unai Emery’s command.

The Gunners were sharp, lively and industrious as they made amends after United eliminated them from the FA Cup six weeks ago. Emery named six players who started Thursday’s Europa League defeat by Rennes in his starting line-up, but there was little sign of fatigue as the hosts came flying out of traps. They opened the scoring with their only shot on target in the first half, Xhaka deceiving De Gea with a shot that left the United keeper rooted to his line. Leno was also key for Gunners. The German did well to frustrate Lukaku as the Belgium forward threatened to go around and equalise, before denying the same player with an outstretched leg after half-time. Arsenal have now played all their Champions League chasing rivals – a place in Europe’s most prestigious competition next season is very much in their own hands.

Rennes 3 Arsenal 1

Arsenal manager Unai Emery says he has “confidence” his side can overturn Rennes’ 3-1 lead at Emirates Stadium in the second leg of their Europa League last-16 tie. Alex Iwobi’s early cross-shot had put Arsenal in front but they lost control of the game after Sokratis Papastathopoulos’ dismissal for a second booking. Benjamin Bourigeaud immediately drew the hosts level with a stunning strike into the top right corner, with Nacho Monreal’s own goal and Ismaila Sarr’s late header compounding a miserable evening for Arsenal. Arsenal go into the second leg having overturned a 1-0 deficit in the last-32 stage. On that occasion, they progressed with a 3-0 home victory over Belarus side Bate Borisov.

Arsenal arrived at Roazhon Park having never lost an away game against French opposition. For large parts of the first half, that record looked like remaining intact as they gathered an early lead courtesy of Iwobi and controlled possession. But while Lucas Torreira’s effort was superbly saved by Rennes goalkeeper Tomas Koubek and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang also tested the Czech keeper they proved architects of their own downfall in an 86-second spell. Having already been booked for a foul on Hatem Ben Arfa, Greece defender Papastathopoulos pulled Sarr’s shirt to earn his second yellow card, shifting the momentum of the game in the hosts’ favour.

With attacking midfielder Henrikh Mkhitaryan operating as a makeshift right-back, Arsenal faced one-way traffic in the second period. Petr Cech, who replaced Bernd Leno in goal, produced a string of superb saves, denying Adrien Hunou, Sarr and Ben Arfa with the score at 1-1. But he was helpless to prevent Rennes’ second of the night as the Arsenal defence clocked off and Mehdi Zeffane’s cross flicked off Monreal into the top corner. And after carelessly losing possession late on, James Lea Siliki escaped to deliver the perfect ball for an unmarked Sarr to head past Cech at the far post.

Tottenham Hotspurs 1 Arsenal 1

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang saw a last-minute penalty saved by Hugo Lloris to cost Arsenal victory and ensure Tottenham retained a crucial advantage over their arch-rivals in the battle for a top-four place after a dramatic north London derby at Wembley. Harry Kane’s contested penalty put Spurs level with 16 minutes left after Aaron Ramsey’s coolly taken 16th-minute goal threatened to inflict a third successive league defeat on boss Mauricio Pochettino for the first time in his reign. Arsenal were then handed a golden opportunity to close to within one point of Spurs after Davinson Sanchez fouled Aubameyang, but the striker’s tame penalty was easily saved low to his right by the diving Lloris. And to add to the late chaos, Arsenal’s Lucas Torreira was sent off for a reckless challenge on Danny Rose in the closing seconds.

After Ramsey’s strike, keeper Bernd Leno kept Arsenal on level terms with a miraculous double save from Christian Eriksen and Moussa Sissoko but the Gunners paid a heavy price for a glaring second-half miss from striker Alexandre Lacazette before Aubamayeng’s wayward spot-kick. Lacazette failed to hit the target from eight yards and Spurs took advantage, Kane scoring from the spot to equalise after referee Anthony Taylor adjudged he was fouled by Shkodran Mustafi. Arsenal were also angry as they believed offside should have been given in the build-up but Kane stayed calm amid the chaos to send Leno the wrong way from the spot for his ninth goal in this fixture and keep Spurs four points ahead of Unai Emery’s side. The Gunners, however, have only themselves to blame after wasting that late chance to seal a league double over Spurs.

And in the end, Spurs will be grateful to Arsenal’s wastefulness for a draw that maintains their four-point gap over their local rivals in fourth, and six over Manchester United in fifth. Emery’s initial team selection, which saw Aubameyang, Torreira and Mesut Ozil on the bench, raised eyebrows but it almost resulted in a win that would have put them within one point of Spurs, only for Arsenal to suffer from self-inflicted wounds. Lacazette was a major culprit having been given the nod ahead of Aubameyang, wasting an early chance then repeating his mistake in the second half, skewing wide from close range after superb build-up play from Alex Iwobi and Nacho Monreal. It would have given Arsenal a two-goal cushion and only increased the tension mounting around Wembley at that time.This was a result that could have been much better – and Arsenal may yet look back on it as a very damaging one in their pursuit of qualifying for next season’s Champions League.