It was a huge day in the Premier League on Sunday, capped off by two of last season’s best corners at the Emirates.
Gabriel Martinelli scored in the 87th minute as Arsenal overcame champions Manchester City to move top of the Premier League.
Man City had two chances to go ahead in the first five minutes when Josko Guardiol cleared the line in front of the ball on the volley before falling to Nathan Ake but the Dutch defender fired over from eight yards.
Arsenal goalkeeper David Raya was almost caught after being closed down by Julian Alvarez when Raya tackled the Argentine before hitting the side netting.
The Gunners grew into the game with Eddie Nketiah blazing home a shot from the edge of the area and will have believed they had a case when Mateo Kovacic was sent off after a late challenge on Martin Odegaard, but VAR cleared the foul after a review.
An uneventful second half looked like the game was heading for a goalless draw with both sides canceling each other out until Mikel Arteta’s side had one last trick up their sleeve.
A long ball towards substitute Kai Havertz looked to have dealt with the City defense until it fell into the path of Martinelli on the edge of the box, who hit a first-time right-footed shot that Ake deflected the wrong way. way to the back of the net.
It is Arsenal’s first win in 13 games against the champions as they move 20 points clear at the top with north London rivals Tottenham.
Man city Player Ratings
Goalkeeper & Defenders
David Raya (GK) – 3/10 – Let’s just say Aaron Ramsdale would’ve enjoyed Raya’s nervy outing between the sticks.
Ben White (RB) – 7/10 – Must’ve appreciated the absence of a true one-v-one specialist down his flank until Jeremy Doku’s arrival. White backed up the press well and was stout for the most part despite a couple of positional errors.
William Saliba (CB) – 8/10 – Erling Haaland bounced off the Frenchman a couple of times amid a serene defensive showing from Saliba.
Gabriel (CB) – 7.5/10 – Marshalled Haaland well alongside Saliba, covering the channels impressively when he had to as well. Wasn’t as busy as he perhaps thought he would’ve been.
Oleksandr Zinchenko (LB) – 6/10 – Got through his customary 70 minutes without much hassle. Delivered a couple of piercing passes in the opening period.
Declan Rice (CM) – 8.5/10 – Made an important goal-line clearance early on and went on to have a fantastic game, especially without the ball. Arsenal signed Rice for games like this, and the £105m man certainly produced.
Jorginho (CM) – 6/10 – A curious inclusion that appeared a bad decision after he was booked ten minutes in for a typically cynical foul. He got through the contest unscathed, thankfully, performing at a decent level in the process.
Martin Odegaard (CM) – 3.5/10 – This has to be Odegaard’s most wasteful showing in a very long time. Didn’t deliver on the big occasion.
Gabriel Jesus (RW) – 7.5/10 – The Brazilian has to be commended for his effort down the right flank. His energy never ceased, and he proved a pest all afternoon. A fine showing.
Eddie Nketiah (ST) – 4/10 – Threw himself about but really offered nothing when Arsenal had possession. Should’ve been substituted earlier than he eventually was.
Leandro Trossard (LW) – 5/10 – Withdrawn at half-time without influencing proceedings.
Gabriel Martinelli – 7/10
Kai Havertz – 6.5/10
Takehiro Tomiyasu – 6.5/10
Thomas Partey – 6/10
Arsenal player ratings
GK: David Raya – 4/10 – Extremely shaky on the ball.
RB: Ben White – 7/10 – Defended well throughout and was one of Arsenal’s better players with the ball at his feet.
CB: William Saliba – 7/10 – Marked Haaland out of the game. Craig Dawson-esque showing from Saliba (which is a good thing).
CB: Gabriel Magalhaes – 6/10 – A solid outing.
LB: Oleksandr Zinchenko – 7/10 – Impressed defensively, making six ball recoveries during his time on the pitch.
CM: Martin Odegaard – 7/10 – An industrious performance from the Arsenal captain.
CM: Jorginho – 6/10 – Booked as per. Used the ball quite well when receiving it from the defence.
CM: Declan Rice – 8/10 – Arsenal’s best midfielder on the day. Completed over 90% of his passes, made three interceptions, won four duals and generally just did a lot right on the day.
RW: Gabriel Jesus – 5/10 – A few decent touches but ultimately didn’t provide Arsenal with a cutting edge.
ST: Eddie Nketiah – 5/10 – The England international was very quiet up top, largely because Arsenal didn’t create any chances for him.
LW: Leandro Trossard – 4/10 – He wasn’t effective and was replaced at half-time as a result.
SUB: Gabriel Martinelli (45′ for Trossard) – 8/10 – The best player on the pitch when introduced. It was fitting that he scored the winner.
SUB: Takehiro Tomiyasu (75′ for Zinchenko) – 6/10
SUB: Kai Havertz (75′ for Nketiah) – 7/10 – Bagged an assist for the winning goal.
Manager – Mikel Arteta – 7/10 – Martinelli’s introduction was a masterstroke at half-time that ultimately won Arsenal the game.