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Dublin: 12 °C Friday 19 October, 2018


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A GROIN INJURY was expected to keep Arsenal’s record signing Alexandre Lacazette out of this evening’s Premier League meeting with Manchester United.

The French striker picked up the problem during the win over Huddersfield in midweek and had been effectively ruled out by Arsene Wenger.

However, whether it was mind games are a miraculous recovery, former Lyon forward Lacazette starts tonight in what is the big team news.

Kick-off at the Emirates Stadium is 45 minutes away and we’ll have team line-ups up very shortly.

Here they are now:

Arsenal: Cech, Koscielny, Mustafi, Monreal, Bellerin; Ramsey, Xhaka, Kolasinac, Ozil, Alexis, Lacazette.


Manchester United: De Gea, Valencia, Lindelof, Smalling, Rojo, Young, Matic, Pogba, Lingard, Lukaku, Martial.

Nemanja Matic came off in the recent win over Watford with a muscle injury, which made him a doubt for this game. But, like Lacazette, the Serbian midfielder has been deemed fit to play.

Watford v Manchester United - Premier League - Vicarage Road Matic in action against Watford. Source: Andrew Matthews

With United second in the table and Arsenal back in fifth, four points separates the sides ahead of this one. United’s last victory at the ground was at the end of the Louis van Gaal era.

Time to get your predictions in. How do you see this game going?

Poll Results:


KICK-OFF – We’re off and running with the Gunners tipping off. They’re in their traditional red and white, while United are wearing all black.

Referee tonight is Andre Marriner.

Flag 4Mins

GOAL! Arsenal 0-1 Manchester United (Antonio Valencia) 

What a start from the visitors! Koscielny’s poor ball is robbed by Valencia, who plays a one-two with Pogba before drilling a low strike beyond Cech.


Arsenal playing some neat keep-ball in the opposing half and Sanchez wins a free-kick from Smalling about 30 yards out from goal.

It’s the Chilean to take, but he can only curl it straight at the wall.


GOAL! Arsenal 0-2 Manchester United (Jesse Lingard) 

Wow, the away side are ahead. It’s huge mistake by Arsenal, but ruthless from United. Lingard chases Mustafi down and gets a nick on the ball. Lukaku goes racing through and finds Martial, whose delightful flick sets up Lingard. He finishes first time to double their advantage.


Mustafi, who was at fault for that goal, appears to be struggling now and that could be the end of his evening as Alex Iwobi is preparing to come on.


United are looking dangerous whenever they attack as Lukaku gets down the right and crosses but it’s headed clear.

Down the other end, Iwobi — who has replaced Mustafi — breaks and sends the ball into a central area put behind for a corner by Smalling. From that set-piece, Lacazette gets a slight touch to direct it goalward but De Gea saves.


United half-clear the next corner and Ramsey has a strike from outside the box, which is directed towards goal by Lacazette. The linesman’s flag goes up for offside, however.


Rojo brings down Sacnchez on the edge off the box and this is prime Ozil territory. The German playmaker attempts to clip it over the wall but Young read it and got back onto the line to head away.


How did Arsenal not score there?!? Sanchez opens United up and Rojo then accidentally plays it to the path of Lacazette. His effort comes off De Gea and hits the crossbar, Iwobi tries his luck but sees an attempt blocked, before Xhaka finally shoots wide of the mark.


It’s end-to-end stuff at the moment. United attack on the counter and Pogba looks to pick out two team-mates in the box but his cross is snuffed out.


Good save – Ozil connects with Lacazette’s pass by sending a half-volley at goal. De Gea is well placed to save, however.

Minutes later, Iwobi blasts over after Pogba gives away possession in the corner.


This has been a cracking game so far. Lacazette and Sanchez link up to come close and Ramsey’s goalbound effort is blocked after the resulting corner.

De Gea then has to make two smart saves in quick succession — from Bellerin and Kolasinac.


More defending from United. Arsenal put a free-kick into the danger zone and De Gea has to be at his best to stop a certain goal after the ball comes off the leg of Lukaku.

Flag 45Mins

Half-time: Arsenal 0-2 Manchester United 

Time to catch your breath after a brilliant 45 minutes of football.


Second half – The teams are back out after the break and we’re kicked off again. No changes on either side.

Arsenal v Manchester United - Premier League - Emirates Stadium Wenger looking slightly frustrated. Source: Adam Davy

Flag 49Mins

GOAL! Arsenal 1-2 Manchester United (Alexandre Lacazette) 

The Gunners have one back! Some excellent play sees Sanchez find the run of Ramsey, who tees up Lacezette to finish emphatically as the whole United backline stood still.

Game on.


Off the post! Cech gets a strong arm to put Lingard’s strike onto the post. Martial follows up by Monreal gets in the way to block.

From there, Arsenal go forward and De Gea is forced to save from Iwobi.


David de Gea, that is immense. The Spanish number one pulls off, not one, but two world class saves from Lacazette and Sanchez. The camera turns to Wenger and he can’t believe what he’s seeing.

United need to change things quick or else they’re likely to concede.

Flag 63Mins

GOAL! Arsenal 1-3 Manchester United (Jesse Lingard) 

What was I saying? Never mind. The away side have restored their two-goal advantage thanks to another break. Pogba does all the work down the right before teeing up Lingard for the simplest of tap-ins.

That’s his second of the night.


Substitution – Mourinho takes off Martial to replace him with Ander Herrera. The Spaniard will add energy and bite for the remaining 20-plus minutes.


Arsenal change – Ex-Man United forward Danny Welbeck is on for Xhaka.


Yellow card – Bellerin brings down Young and goes into the book.


RED CARD! Paul Pogba, who has been excellent up to this point, is off. The Frenchman stamps down on the calf of Bellerin and gives referee Andre Marriner a sarcastic clap as he leaves the field.

That’s him out of next week’s Manchester derby.

Britain Soccer Premier League Source: Kirsty Wigglesworth


Another sub – Olivier Giroud is on for Kolasinac as Arsenal attempt to make the most of their numerical advantage and pull back two goals.


“Not that type of player”…


Welbeck tries his luck from 20 yards but it’s deflected off Herrera and De Gea touches over the bar.


Booking – Lukaku gets in front of Koscielny and brings a foul out of the Frenchman to relieve the pressure for United.


Penalty shout for Arsenal! Substitute Darmian catches Welbeck inside the area but claims are waved away. Terrible decision that.


Five minutes of additional time to play…


Ramsey fires well over the bar after Ozil’s cushioned pass.

Mourinho now running down the clock by bringing off Young for Marcus Rashford.


Well that was sensational! A game that had just about everything, and arguably the best we’ve seen in the Premier League so far this season.

About the author:

Ben Blake


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