Manchester City dominates Arsenal to secure 2-1 victory with Haaland and De Bruyne leading the way - Premier League
|Manchester City players celebrate after overcoming Arsenal at the Emirates on Wednesday night. (Photo credit: The Sun)|
Manchester City proved why they have won the league four times in the last five years with a stellar and commanding performance at Arsenal to go level on points and above the Gunners on goals difference.
Arsenal fought valiantly on the night, but they were shot in the leg before kickoff when it was revealed that Thomas Partey would be unavailable due to muscular problems, turning the game into a test for Italian midfielder Jorginho.
Even though Gabriel and William Saliba did a good job, Manchester City's Erling Haaland's plan to mess with Arsenal's defence worked well, as the Norwegian tormented the back line all night.
Kevin De Bruyne was the man of the match, but he had some help from Arsenal’s Takehiro Tomiyasu.
The Gunners undid themselves midway through the first half when a seemingly harmless defensive move that could have gone anywhere else was weakly directed to Aaron Ramsdale by the Japanese right back, and KDB pounced with a first-time lob to send the visitors on top.
Arsenal worked hard and earned a well-deserved equaliser a few minutes before the half after referee Anthony Taylor made a fortunate decision to award a penalty for a clumsy tackle by Ederson on Eddie Nketiah.
Bukayo Saka won the mind game on the spot kick and sent Ederson the wrong way.
City players were strangely wasting time during the first half, and that earned them bookings, but Arsenal couldn’t take advantage as City ran riot in the second half.
Another weak back pass from Gabriel set City up for their second goal.
Ilkay Gundogan dropped one off for Jack Grealish, and his deflected effort off Tomiyasu went in beyond Ramsdale, and the inevitability of Haaland happened ten minutes later.
Another De Bruyne masterclass set the Norwegian up with a fine first touch, and he slotted in perfectly to confirm the result that condemns Arsenal to their third defeat of the season.
They have now gone four games without a win in all competitions while relinquishing the top spot since early November.
Next for the Gunners is a trip to Aston Villa where they will negotiate with their former manager.
Maybe it’s not time to press the panic button yet as Arsenal still has it in their grasp with the game in hand.
If they keep things together, maybe the elephant will climb again.