Arsenal’s long unbeaten run of 14 league games finally came to an end when Southampton beat them 3-2 at the St. Mary’s Stadium.
It was an entertaining game with both creating enough chances to score goals and cause trouble to the respective oppositions.
Danny Ings gave the home side an ideal start with a resounding header in the 20th minute, following a magnificent cross from Matt Targett. The Gunners replied just after eight minutes of conceding. A lovely build-up on the left-hand side left Nacho Monreal on the byline unmarked, who delivered a peach of a cross for Henrikh Mkhitaryan to score.
Saints took the lead back in the 44th minute via their aforementioned goal scorer, this time an exceptional cross coming in from Nathan Redmond.
Unai Emery’s men responded eight minutes after the break, with substitute Alexandre Lacazette assisting Mkhitaryan for his second goal of the game.
Enter the final 10 minutes and Arsenal pushed forward for a winner, but Southampton hit them on the counter. Shane Long was released on the left channel, he then picked out Charlie Austin on the far post with keeper Bernd Leno slightly misjudging the flight of the cross. Austin then had a virtual open net to score and sent the crowd and his manager into delirium.
Here’s how we rated the Arsenal players:
Bernd Leno - 5
The German couldn’t have done much to save the opening two goals. However, he should have done slightly better to prevent the third.
Hector Bellerin - 5
The Spaniard made a couple of good runs on the right side. Picked up a knock and was replaced at half-time.
Stephan Lichtsteiner - 5
Didn’t look comfortable playing as one of the centre-backs. He was better at right-back. Subbed off due to a knock late on.
Laurent Koscielny - 5
Being the central defender of the three, he missed Ings for both the goals. Looked out of pace at times which was understandable after being out since April.
Granit Xhaka - 6
Played an unfamiliar role as left-side centre-back and did well. Arsenal missed his calming presence in midfield though.
Nacho Monreal - 6
Great work for the first equaliser. His return to fitness is a massive boost for the Gunners.
Lucas Torreira - 7
Once again Arsenal’s best player on the pitch. He made those driving runs from midfield and was proactive throughout the game.
Matteo Guendouzi - 4
Not his best display by any stretch of imagination. The youngster was caught out of position too many times.
Alex Iwobi - 5
The Nigerian tried but couldn’t really make things happen.
Henrikh Mkhitaryan - 7
Scored both the goals with a stroke of luck for the second one.
Pierre Emerick Aubameyang - 6
He was denied by Alex McCarthy a couple of times from close range. The Gabonese was a real danger throughout.
SUB - Alexandre Lacazette - 6
Came on at half-time and assisted the second goal. He hustled the Saints defenders to make mistakes.
SUB -Mesut Ozil -3
No impact from the German as he looked a lost figure in a high intensity game.
SUB - Ainsley Maitland-Niles-N/A
Came on late and could have done better to track Charlie Austin’s run.