Arsenal’s woefully defensive setup came back to haunt them as they let 10 man Liverpool equalize in a lengthy injury time. Martin Skrtel’s equaliser seven minutes into stoppage time gave Liverpool a fully deserved point against Arsenal at Anfield. Referee Michael Oliver had added nine minutes on after a lengthy second-half delay when Skrtel required treatment for a head wound sustained in an accidental clash with Olivier Giroud. Giroud looked to have sent Arsenal on the way to avenging their 5-1 thrashing at Anfield last season when he put them ahead, Mathieu Debuchy having equalised seconds after Philippe Coutinho gave Liverpool the lead on the stroke of half-time.
But Skrtel, heavily bandaged and with Liverpool reduced to 10 men after substitute Fabio Borini was sent off late on, rose to meet Adam Lallana’s corner in the 97th minute and power a header past Arsenal keeper Wojciech Szczesny in front of the Kop. Arsenal were desolate but it would have been a real smash-and-grab had they hung on for three points after Liverpool showed most of the ambition and moments of quality in a game high on drama but short on class. Brendan Rodgers’s team moved into the top 10 in the Premier League table, but they are nine points adrift of West Ham in fourth place, while Arsenal are sixth. Arsenal showed greater ruthlessness in front of goal to go ahead after 64 minutes, Giroud sweeping a finish past Jones at the near post from Santi Cazorla’s cross.
Despite Arsenal’s numerical advantage, Liverpool continued to press and Skrtel delivered a result that was the least they deserved. Arsenal were lucky, on this showing, that Liverpool did not have out n out strikers playing in their lineup. Per was poor, Flamini being run ragged was helpless, Ox, Welbeck and Alexis had poor games with Sanchez especially looking tired & burned out. January transfers are needed and we desperately need reinforcements and perhaps selling off of a couple of our players.