The future of the Premier League top four was very dependent on the outcome of this match, and a win for Arsene Wenger’s men in the Arsenal vs Leicester City fixture can cause headaches for the two Manchester clubs who are getting ready to lock horns against each other tomorrow night.
Arsenal lineup (4-2-3-1): Petr Cech; Hector Bellerin, Gabriel Paulista, Laurent Koscielny, Nacho Monreal; Granit Xhaka, Francis Coquelin (Aaron Ramsey, 75′); Theo Walcott (Olivier Giroud, 75′), Mesut Ozil, Kieron Gibbs (Danny Welbeck, 68′); Alexis Sanchez.
Leicester City lineup (4-4-2): Kasper Schmeichel; Danny Simpson, Yohan Benalouane (Demarai Gray, 90′), Robert Huth, Christian Fuchs; Riyad Mahrez, Wilfred Ndidi, Danny Drinkwater, Marc Albrighton; Leonardo Ulloa (Shinji Okazaki, 69′), Jamie Vardy.
Goals: Huth (OG, 86′).
Yellow cards: Simpson (38′), Fuchs (52′), Benalouane (80′), Xhaka (82′), Sanchez (90’+3′), Huth (90’+4′).
The first half did not produce any breakthrough for either of the teams. Both created some chances, but the two goalkeepers were at their best. For the away side, the best opportunity came when a Fuchs’s long through found Mahrez inside the Arsenal box. The Algerian took a thunderous volley but Cech managed to palm it away over the bar. On the other hand, Schmeichel pulled off some stunning saves from a couple of efforts of Coquelin and Walcott.
And then, at the dying moments of the first half, Sanchez almost broke the deadlock from a magnificent effort. The Chilean took a couple of touches yards outside the box before taking an aim at the goal. The shot was good enough to beat Schmeichel, but it could only rattle the woodwork afterwards. Leicester City were lucky to save the scare and went to the break with the score locked level.
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Ten minutes into the second half, a great run from Bellerin resulted into a nice chance for Sanchez. But, this time, Huth’s impeccable sense of timing produced a perfect tackle and Leicester City managed to keep the home side at bay once again.
For the next half an hour, it was end to end action from the two sides, but no one could manage to hit the back of the nets. The coaches made necessary changes and brought new attackers to the pitch to turn the fate around. However, at the stroke of 86th minute, it was Monreal who could find the winner, albeit from a huge deflection off Huth. After a failed clearance from Leicester defenders, Monreal found the ball at the end of the box and he took a strike that was meant to go way wide. But, it hit the chest of Robert Huth and much to the dismay of the away supporters, found its way into the nets.
Arsenal vs Leicester City Highlights:
Arsenal vs Leicester City Match Statistics:
|Shots (on target)||12 (5)||7 (3)|
|Passes played (accuracy)||598 (87%)||223 (71%)|
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