Arteta Confident FA Cup Winner Aubameyang Will Stay At Arsenal

Arsenal’s Spanish head coach Mikel Arteta holds the winner’s trophy as the team celebrates victory after the English FA Cup final football match between Arsenal and Chelsea at Wembley Stadium in London, on August 1, 2020. – Arsenal won the match 2-1. (Photo by Catherine Ivill / POOL / AFP)

 

 

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta believes Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will commit his long-term future to the Gunners after scoring twice to beat Chelsea 2-1 in the FA Cup final on Saturday.

Aubameyang dropped the trophy in his first mistake of the day before lifting Arsenal’s record 14th FA Cup and his first trophy since joining the Londoners from Borussia Dortmund in January 2018.

The Gabon international has been prolific in his two-and-a-half years in England, attracting interest from around Europe with just one year of his contract at the Emirates left to run.

 

Arsenal’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates scoring his team’s second goal during the English FA Cup final football match between Arsenal and Chelsea at Wembley Stadium in London, on August 1, 2020. 

But Arteta is confident Aubameyang will be convinced to stay by Arsenal’s upturn since the Spaniard took charge in December.

“He knows what I think about him, I want to build a squad around him,” said Arteta.

“I think he wants to stay, it is about getting the deal done.

“I think moments like that will help to realise and give him belief that we are in the right path and he is a big part of it.

“He is loved by everyone at the club so hopefully he will continue with us.”

 

Arsenal Defeat Chelsea 2-1 To Win FA Cup
Arsenal’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang holds the winner’s trophy as the team celebrates victory after the English FA Cup final.
Catherine Ivill / POOL / AFP

Victory also secured Arsenal’s place in the Europa League next season to ensure they did not miss out on European football for the first time in 25 years.

Arteta warned that failure to qualify for Europe would further restrict his transfer budget before the new Premier League season starts in just six weeks’ time.

“It is a double reward for us, it is really important for this club in every way to be in Europe,” added Arteta, who became the first man to win the FA Cup for Arsenal as a captain and coach.

“Winning this competition is part of our history. It’s 14 now, I contributed, we all did it, so I am so happy.”

Aubameyang paid tribute to Arteta’s impact after what had been a desperately disappointing start to the season under Unai Emery, but dodged questions on his future.

“He deserves this win. He did a great job and we are all happy to have him on board,” said Aubameyang.

“Nothing,” he added when pushed for comment on his plans for next season. “Today, it’s just about the trophy.”

 

 

 

-AFP

Three Things We Learned From The FA Cup Final

Arsenal’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is mobbed by teammates after scoring his team’s second goal during the English FA Cup final football match between Arsenal and Chelsea at Wembley Stadium in London, on August 1, 2020. (Photo by Catherine Ivill / POOL / AFP)

 

 

Arsenal beat Chelsea 2-1 thanks to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s brace in the FA Cup final on Saturday.

Let’s look at three things we learned from the Wembley clash:

Irreplacable Aubameyang

In what could be his last game for Arsenal, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang showed why the Gunners must do everything in their power to keep the Gabon forward.

The 31-year-old is out of contract at the end of next season and has been linked with a move amid reports he wants to play for a club in the Champions League.

Coach Mikel Arteta insists Aubameyang wants to stay, but he also conceded winning the FA Cup would be a useful way to show him the club are heading in the right direction.

Arsenal did their part and it was Aubameyang who provided the crucial cutting edge.

The first African player to start an FA Cup final as captain, Aubameyang became the second-oldest player to score for Arsenal in the showpiece.

With Arsenal trailing to Christian Pulisic’s early goal, Aubameyang’s blistering break left Cesar Azpilicueta trailing in his wake.

Azpilicueta responded by tugging at Aubameyang’s shoulder and the forward made the most of the contact as he tumbled in the area to win a penalty that he dispatched with ruthless efficiency.

Aubameyang won the German Cup with Borussia Dortmund in 2017, scoring the winning goal from the penalty spot.

Once again, he would be the star, but this time it was his skill and improvisation that proved decisive as he jinked past Kurt Zouma and clipped a fine finish over Willy Caballero in the 67th minute.

Chelsea hamstrung by Pulisic injury

Christian Pulisic had emerged as a key figure for Chelsea since the coronavirus hiatus, but a day that started on a high for the United States winger ended in agony.

It has been that kind of turbulent season for Pulisic, whose first year with Chelsea started slowly amid injuries and poor form before bursting into life.

He was on the scoresheet after just five minutes, with his 11th goal of the season.

Drifting into central midfield to take possession, Pulisic slipped a precise pass to Mason Mount and carried on his run into the Arsenal penalty area, where he took Olivier Giroud’s flick and slotted past Emiliano Martinez.

Pulisic was the first American to score in the FA Cup final but disaster struck in the 49th minute when he raced away for a shot that was interrupted when he felt his hamstring twang.

Immediately grabbing the injured area, Pulisic was helped off the pitch.

Without the pace of Pulisic to keep Arsenal’s defense on the back foot, Frank Lampard’s side was bereft of a cutting edge in the final third as the trophy slipped from their grasp.

Arteta bolsters growing reputation

Mikel Arteta enhanced his reputation as one of the Premier League’s brightest young managers with another tactical masterclass.

Having out-witted his mentor Pep Guardiola in Arsenal’s FA Cup semi-final success against Manchester City, Arteta showed his acumen again to leave Chelsea boss Frank Lampard out of answers.

Arteta’s use of long passes into the channels behind Chelsea’s two attacking full-backs exposed the flaw in Lampard’s defensive system and led directly to Aubameyang’s equaliser.

Leading Arsenal to their 14th FA Cup success — which brings them a place in next season’s Europa League — showed the 38-year-old Spaniard is the man to restore the club’s tattered reputation.

Arsenal may have endured their lowest league finish for a quarter of a century this season as Arteta battled to steady the ship following Unai Emery’s sacking in December.

But he has won over his players with a direct approach to discipline — banishing malcontents Mesut Ozil and Matteo Guendouzi — and his astute game-plans.

Winning the FA Cup will buy Arteta time to continue his rebuild and it was fitting his first trophy as Arsenal manager came in the tournament that brought the last major silverware of Gunners legend Arsene Wenger’s reign.

 

 

-AFP

‘We Deserve To Win A Trophy’: Luiz Redemption As Arsenal Shock Man City

Arsenal’s Brazilian defender David Luiz heads the ball during the English FA Cup semi-final football match between Arsenal and Manchester City at Wembley Stadium in London, on July 18, 2020. (Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS / POOL / AFP)

 

David Luiz insists Arsenal’s shock 2-0 win over Manchester City in the FA Cup semi-finals proves they deserve to be contenders for major trophies.

Arsenal defender Luiz enjoyed a sweet moment of redemption as his superb display paved the way for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s double to knock out holders City at Wembley.

Luiz was lambasted after giving away a goal before being sent off for conceding a penalty in Arsenal’s 3-0 defeat at City in their first game following the coronavirus hiatus.

 

Arsenal’s Brazilian defender David Luiz (L) jumps across to block Manchester City’s English midfielder Raheem Sterling (C) during the English FA Cup semi-final football match between Arsenal and Manchester City at Wembley Stadium in London, on July 18, 2020. (Photo by MATTHEW CHILDS / POOL / AFP)

 

But the Brazilian kept City at bay in the rematch and Arsenal, through to a record 21st FA Cup final, will play Chelsea or Manchester United in the showpiece on August 1.

“We have a final to play this season and we will try and win a title for this club because this club deserves to win a trophy,” Luiz told BT Sport.

 

 

Arsenal’s Argentinian goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez (L) celebrats with Arsenal’s Brazilian defender David Luiz (2L) and Arsenal’s Spanish midfielder Dani Ceballos (3L) at the end of the English FA Cup semi-final football match between Arsenal and Manchester City at Wembley Stadium in London, on July 18, 2020. (Photo by MATTHEW CHILDS / POOL / AFP) 

 

“It was a great result against one of the best teams in the world. We were humble, we understood the way we had to play and we took the opportunities to score.

“We have to be mature, to understand what level we are in the process.”

Luiz paid tribute to Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta, who out-witted City boss Pep Guardiola with a shrewd game plan, and saluted his team-mates’ fighting spirit.

 

Arsenal’s Brazilian defender David Luiz (R) challenges Manchester City’s Brazilian striker Gabriel Jesus (L) during the English FA Cup semi-final football match between Arsenal and Manchester City at Wembley Stadium in London, on July 18, 2020. (Photo by MATTHEW CHILDS / POOL / AFP) / NOT FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING USE / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE

 

“We have an amazing coach but we can’t go from 0 to 100. We are improving. The spirit was great and I’m happy for the team because they deserve it,” Luiz said.

“All the team defended, it is not just the last line. Everybody has to fight and play every ball 100 percent. It’s part of the process.

 

Arsenal’s Brazilian defender David Luiz (R) celebrates with Arsenal’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (2R) at the end of the English FA Cup semi-final football match between Arsenal and Manchester City at Wembley Stadium in London, on July 18, 2020. 

 

“We could do more of this in the game so it would maybe be easier. The other team is miles away in front of us but we were humble so when we play we can hurt the opponent and we did that.”

Asked if he was hurt by the criticism following the defeat at City in June, Luiz — who has since signed a new contract — said: “It is part of the football. I understood that football is about surviving.

“Every day you are going to defend the odd thing. I was working hard every single day after my mistakes. I was humble to work more and to work more for the team.”

-AFP

Golden Boot: Salah, Vardy, Aubameyang In Hot Race For Topscorer

Liverpool's Egyptian midfielder Mohamed Salah celebrates after he scores his team's fourth goal during the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Southampton at Anfield in Liverpool, north west England on February 1, 2020. Paul ELLIS / AFP
Liverpool’s Egyptian midfielder Mohamed Salah celebrates after he scores his team’s fourth goal during the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Southampton at Anfield in Liverpool, north west England on February 1, 2020.
Paul ELLIS / AFP

 

 

While the Premier League title has already been won by Liverpool in record time, the battle to finish as the top-flight’s leading scorer is set to go down to the wire.

Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah could add the Golden Boot to his Premier League winners’ medal, but he has work to do to catch Leicester’s Jamie Vardy, who sits top of the goal charts with four games left.

Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is also in contention to get his hands on the prize after sharing it with Salah and Sadio Mane last season when the trio each scored 22 goals.

Southampton’s Danny Ings is the dark horse after an unexpectedly prolific campaign.

Jamie Vardy

With 22 league goals to his credit so far this term, Vardy is in pole position to take the prize, especially after rediscovering his peak form over the last week.

Vardy failed to score in Leicester’s first four games after the coronavirus hiatus, but the 33-year-old netted twice against Crystal Palace to pass 100 Premier League goals and struck again at Arsenal.

“He’s a legend here for the rest of his time at the club, it’s just what he adds to that status over the rest of his career,” Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers said after Vardy became the 29th player to join the Premier League 100-goal club.

Winning the Golden Boot would be another landmark moment for Vardy, who has defied the odds throughout his remarkable rise from non-league journeyman to Premier League champion four years ago.

Vardy’s next opportunity to increase his grip on top spot comes against lowly Bournemouth on Sunday.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

The Arsenal forward has scored three times in his last three appearances to move into second place in the goal race.

Aubameyang has netted 20 times this season, his prolific form increased Arsenal’s desire to get the Gabon international to extend a contract that expires at the end of next season.

The 31-year-old is yet to agree a new deal amid reported interest from Barcelona and Paris Saint Germain.

His value to Arsenal comes not just in his goals but in his ability to play wide on the left as well as up front.

Sunday’s north London derby at Tottenham and a home game against Liverpool in their following game give Aubameyang a chance to put pressure on Vardy when the spotlight is brightest.

Mohamed Salah

Having won the Golden Boot in 2018 and finished in joint first place last year, the Liverpool forward needs a late goal spree to make it three successive seasons on top of the leaderboard.

Salah’s brace in a 3-1 win at Brighton on Wednesday took him to 19 goals and, with Liverpool chasing a new Premier League points record, the Egyptian is likely to remain in the team even with the title won.

With nine assists this season, compared to four for Vardy, two for Aubameyang and two for Ings, the 28-year-old all round value to Liverpool is arguably higher than any of his Golden Boot rivals.

Next up for Liverpool is Saturday’s clash with Burnley followed by games against Arsenal, Chelsea and Newcastle to round off a memorable campaign that could finish on a high for Salah on a personal note as well.

Danny Ings

The Southampton striker bagged his 19th goal of the season in Thursday’s 1-1 draw at Everton.

After a blistering run during the winter, the goals had dried up a little for Ings, but the 27-year-old has been back in predatory form since the restart.

Ahead of Monday’s trip to Manchester United, Ings’ four goals in his last five matches have underlined the former Liverpool forward’s case for a possible England call-up when international football resumes.

First, Ings will focus on becoming the first Golden Boot winner to play for a club outside the Premier League’s ‘big six’ since Sunderland’s Kevin Phillips in 1999-2000.

 

 

-AFP

West Ham Stun Chelsea, Aubameyang Fires Arsenal Revival

Arsenal's Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates after scoring a goal during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Norwich City at the Emirates Stadium in London on July 1, 2020. (Photo by Shaun Botterill / POOL / AFP) / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No video emulation. Social media in-match use limited to 120 images. An additional 40 images may be used in extra time. No use in betting publications, games or single club/league/player publications. /
Arsenal’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates after scoring a goal during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Norwich City at the Emirates Stadium in London on July 1, 2020. (Photo by Shaun Botterill / POOL / AFP) /

 

 

West Ham rocked Chelsea’s top-four hopes and boosted their survival bid with a dramatic 3-2 win, while Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang struck twice as Arsenal climbed back into European contention with a 4-0 thrashing of Norwich on Wednesday.

Chelsea were hoping to take advantage of third-placed Leicester’s 2-1 defeat at Everton earlier in the day, but instead, the Blues were beaten for the first time since the Premier League restart.

West Ham were denied the opening goal at the London Stadium when VAR ruled Michail Antonio was offside as he lay on the ground while Tomas Soucek slotted home.

Willian fired Chelsea ahead from the penalty spot five minutes before half-time after Issa Diop tripped Christian Pulisic.

Soucek headed home in first-half stoppage time as West Ham finally scored their first goal since the restart.

Antonio put West Ham in front in the 51st minute when he slid in to convert Jarrod Bowen’s cross.

Willian’s superb 70th-minute free-kick drew Chelsea level, but it was West Ham who broke away to win it in the 89th minute when substitute Andriy Yarmolenko finished a brilliant counter attack.

Chelsea are one point behind Leicester and only two ahead of Manchester United and Wolves as the race to qualify for the Champions League hots up with six games left.

West Ham’s crucial first win since the restart moved them three points clear of the relegation zone.

At the Emirates Stadium, Aubameyang moved alongside Jamie Vardy as the Premier League’s top scorer on 19 goals on a night of contrasting fortunes for the Golden Boot contenders.

Arsenal registered a third straight win to move up to seventh against a Norwich side ever more resigned to relegation.

Canaries keeper Tim Krul did his side no favours by gifting the opener to Aubameyang when he was caught trying to dribble past the Gabon international.

Aubameyang’s first saw him reach 50 Premier League goals in 79 appearances — making him the fastest Arsenal player to reach that landmark.

“A player that is able to score as many goals as he has done in that short space of time tells you everything about the importance that he has for us,” said Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta.

Aubameyang turned provider for Granit Xhaka to make it 2-0 before half-time and was then handed another gift when Norwich striker Josip Drmic teed him up to make it 3-0.

Cedric Soares, signed from Southampton in January, made his debut one to remember with a long-range strike nine minutes from time to round off the scoring.

 

Leicester lose more ground 

Leicester are headed in the opposite direction as their winless run since English football’s restart from the coronavirus pandemic stretched to four games.

Richarlison and Gylfi Sigurdsson’s penalty gave Everton the perfect start at Goodison Park.

Kelechi Iheanacho’s fortunate goal as the ball ricocheted in off his face reduced Leicester’s arrears and they pressed hard for an equaliser in the closing stages.

Michael Keane’s clearance off the line spared Jordan Pickford’s blushes after another huge error from the England number one.

“Our form hasn’t been the best for a period now but we still have it in our hands to achieve what would be a dream for us, getting into the top four,” said Leicester boss Brendan Rodgers. “But we can only get that if the performance is right.”

At the bottom of the table, Bournemouth also suffered a huge blow in their battle to beat the drop with a humiliating 4-1 home defeat by Newcastle.

Dwight Gayle, Sean Longstaff, Miguel Almiron, and Valentino Lazaro were on target for the Magpies, who were not distracted by the ongoing uncertainty around the club over a proposed Saudi takeover.

Bournemouth remains in the bottom three and the margin of defeat could also prove costly as they drop below Aston Villa on goal difference into 19th.

 

 

-AFP

Aubameyang, Mahrez, African Players On The Spotlight In Europe

Arsenal’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (2nd L) celebrates scoring the 0-3 with his team-mates during the UEFA Europa League Group F football match Eintracht Frankfurt v Arsenal in Frankfurt am Main, western Germany, on September 19, 2019. Daniel ROLAND / AFP

 

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang took the honours among the African stars in Europe at the weekend, scoring twice as Arsenal edged Everton 3-2 in an English Premier League thriller.

The brace from the 30-year-old Gabon star increased his league tally this season to 17, level with Jamie Vardy of Leicester City at the top of the scoring charts.

A brilliant pass from Algeria winger Riyad Mahrez against former club Leicester City set up Gabriel Jesus to score the match-winner for Manchester City.

ENGLAND

PIERRE-EMERICK AUBAMEYANG (Arsenal)

Striker Aubameyang was in predatory form as his brace fired Arsenal to a 3-2 victory over Everton at the Emirates Stadium. The 30-year-old netted Arsenal’s second goal to put them 2-1 in front when he sprinted on to David Luiz’s pass and fired into the far corner in the 33rd minute. After Richarlison equalised on the stroke of half-time, Aubameyang struck again 26 seconds into the second half with a glancing header from Ivorian Nicolas Pepe’s cross.

RIYAD MAHREZ (Manchester City)

The winger provided a moment of magic to help Manchester City to their single-goal victory against Leicester. With Pep Guardiola’s side labouring to break down the stubborn hosts at the King Power Stadium, it was Mahrez who found a way to prise open their defence. Surging forward from midfield, Mahrez weighed up his options in an instant and slipped a perfectly-timed pass to Jesus, who buried the 80th-minute winner that moved second-place City seven points clear of third-place Leicester.

WILFRIED ZAHA (Crystal Palace)

The Ivory Coast forward was involved in a flash-point that saw Newcastle’s Valentino Lazaro sent off in Crystal Palace’s 1-0 win over Newcastle. Patrick van Aanholt’s superb first-half free-kick had put Roy Hodgson’s side on course for their first win of 2020, but the points were not secure until deep into stoppage time when Zaha burst through on goal and was hauled down by Lazaro, who was shown a straight red card.

GERMANY

ACHRAF HAKIMI (Borussia Dortmund)

Real Madrid loanee Hakimi was one of Dortmund’s young guns to shine in a 2-0 win at Werder Bremen, proving constantly dangerous on the right wing. The Moroccan’s pass for Erling Braut Haaland’s goal marked his 10th assist of the season.

CHRISTOPHER ANTWI-ADJEI (Paderborn)

Antwi-Adjei, who was born in Germany but represents Ghana at international level, won the ball back and carried it upfield in the lead-up to Sven Michel’s equaliser in the 75th minute against Bayern Munich. Despite picking up a late yellow card, Antwi-Adjei was impressive throughout in his side’s 3-2 loss to the German champions.

STRELI MAMBA (Paderborn)

Paderborn forward Mamba, who has scored five goals so far this campaign, thought he had a sixth in the fourth minute his side’s defeat at Bayern when he slid the ball under Manuel Neuer, but his goal was ruled offside. The Germany-born player, who has roots in the Democratic Republic of Congo, had another clear chance in the 50th minute but was unable to connect with a lofted cross, injuring his knee in the process.

FRANCE

STEPHANE BAHOKEN (Angers)

Cameroon striker Bahoken came off the bench in the second half and needed only a minute to score the only goal of the game as Angers beat Montpellier 1-0 to record their first league win of 2020. It was just a third league goal of the campaign for the 27-year-old, who netted 11 times last season.

M’BAYE NIANG (Rennes)

The France-born Senegal forward was recalled to the Rennes team for their home clash with Nimes and marked the occasion by scoring twice as the Brittany side came from behind to win 2-1. Niang headed the winning goal in the 89th minute and the result allowed Rennes to reclaim third place in the table as they fight to qualify for the Champions League for the first time. Niang is also now on 10 league goals for the season.

HABIB DIALLO (Metz)

Senegal forward Diallo has been outstanding for Metz this season, wearing the captain’s armband and scoring 12 times for a team fighting to avoid relegation. However, he was sent off late on in his side’s 2-0 defeat by Lyon, receiving a straight red card for hitting out at opposition defender Marcal. He now faces a suspension for upcoming games, with his club hovering just above the bottom three in Ligue 1.

AFP

Arsenal Revival Gathers Pace As Aubameyang Downs Everton

Arsenal players celebrate their third goal scored by Arsenal’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Everton at the Emirates Stadium in London on February 23, 2020. Tolga AKMEN / AFP

 

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang boosted Arsenal’s hopes of gate-crashing the race to reach the Champions League as his double clinched a 3-2 win against Everton on Sunday.

For much of a troubled season Arsenal have been written off as also-rans in the battle to qualify for Europe’s elite club competition.

But, recovering from the wreckage of the Unai Emery era, their revival under Mikel Arteta is gathering pace.

Rocked by Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s first-minute goal at the Emirates Stadium, Arsenal equalised through Eddie Nketiah and took the lead thanks to Aubameyang.

Richarlison levelled for Everton to cap a dramatic first half, but Gabon striker Aubameyang had the final word seconds after the break.

Arsenal climbed above Everton into ninth place and sit four points behind fifth-placed Manchester United.

With second-placed Manchester City banned from European competitions for the next two years, as it stands finishing fifth could secure Champions League action pending the result of City’s appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

There is growing belief at Arsenal that they could take advantage of the punishment for Arteta’s former club.

The Gunners are now unbeaten in their last 10 games in all competitions, including seven without defeat in the league after a second successive victory.

Everton must recover quickly to avoid their own European hopes being dashed after a first defeat in six league games.

Carlo Ancelotti’s side were hoping for a statement victory and they made the perfect start after 49 seconds.

Gylfi Sigurdsson’s inswinging free-kick was met with a misjudged attempt to head clear from David Luiz, who only succeeded in glancing the ball up on the air off his shoulder.

Calvert-Lewin’s reaction was inspired as he threw himself into a spectacular overhead kick from six yards out that left Arsenal goalkeeper Bernd Leno rooted to the spot.

It was the 22-year-old’s seventh league goal in his last nine games.

Already reeling from their limp start, Arsenal were dealt another blow when left-back Sead Kolasinac was forced off with his right arm in a sling after an aerial collision with Djibril Sidibe.

 Classic counter 

There was a saving grace to the substitution as Bukayo Saka replaced Kolasinac and made an instant impact.

Saka is only 18 but the Arsenal youth academy graduate already has a reputation for producing devastating crosses and he conjured another to lay on the 27th-minute equaliser.

Surging onto Granit Xhaka’s pass, Saka whipped a pin-point cross into the six-yard box where the 20-year-old Nketiah got behind Yerry Mina to cushion a volley past Pickford.

Before their latest meeting, Arsenal had scored 327 top-flight goals against Everton, more than any other opponent has scored against another in the highest tier of English football.

They took that tally to 329 with a classic counter-attack in the 33rd minute.

For all Luiz’s faults as a defender, the Brazilian can unfurl a pretty pass and his superb through ball sent Aubameyang clear of Sidibe to guide a clinical finish into the far corner.

Richarlison was fortunate to earn just a yellow card for a rash lunge that sent Dani Ceballos flying.

And Arsenal were left to rue that decision as Richarlison bagged his 12th goal of the season in first-half stoppage-time.

When Sigurdsson’s scuffed shot bounced high into the penalty area, the Gunners defence stood flat-footed and Mina headed on for Richarlison to poke home from close range.

Arsenal responded emphatically, emulating Everton’s fast start to the first half with a goal 26 seconds after the interval.

Nicolas Pepe curled in an inviting cross and Aubameyang got clear of the hapless Sidibe to guide a glancing header past Pickford for his 19th goal of the season.

Leno preserved Arsenal’s victory with a fine save from Calvert-Lewin, who also headed inches wide in a tense finale.

Aubameyang Sinks Burnley To Maintain Arsenal’s Winning Start

 

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang was Arsenal’s match-winner again as the Gabon forward sealed a 2-1 victory against Burnley to extend his side’s perfect start to the Premier League season on Saturday.

Aubameyang had netted the only goal in last weekend’s win at Newcastle and he emulated that crucial contribution with another decisive strike at the Emirates Stadium.

Alexandre Lacazette’s first goal of the season had given Arsenal the lead before Ashley Barnes equalised for Burnley just before half-time.

It was an encouraging afternoon for Arsenal manager Unai Emery as his widely written-off team continued to bounce back from their dismal end to last season.

Failing to finish in the top four and losing the Europa League final against Chelsea robbed Arsenal of a Champions League place and led to a summer of recriminations as fans vented their frustrations.

But Emery has quietly assembled a more vibrant squad than he had in his troubled first campaign.

With two successive wins to start the season for the first time in 10 years, the early signs are promising for Arsenal ahead of sterner tests against Liverpool and Tottenham in their next two games.

As well as goals for Arsenal’s two main strikers, there was a virtuoso performance from on-loan Real Madrid midfielder Dani Ceballos, who had two assists in his first start.

Club record signing Nicolas Pepe impressed after coming off the bench as half-time and although former Chelsea defender David Luiz was hardly rock solid on his debut, Emery’s back four did enough to keep Burnley at bay.

Mesut Ozil was again absent from the Gunners squad after the German midfielder was ill earlier this week.

Ozil missed the Newcastle match because of “further security fears” after being involved in a carjacking incident with team-mate Sead Kolasinac in July.

But Ozil’s absence wasn’t a hinderance against a Burnley team who suffered their eighth successive loss at the Emirates.

Lacazette, back from an ankle injury that meant he was only a substitute at Newcastle, came close to putting Arsenal in front when he met a Sokratis flick with a close-range header that Nick Pope tipped over.

Deft Touch

It was only a temporary reprieve for Burnley as Emery’s side took the lead from the resulting corner in the 13th minute.

Ceballos’s corner reached Lacazette at the near post and he showed impressive strength to hold off Erik Pieters as he turned away from a gaggle of Burnley defenders, his determined effort sending him slipping to the turf but not before he guided his shot through Pope’s legs.

Ceballos showed a deft touch and quick feet to escape the attentions of his marker, drawing a huge cheer from the Arsenal fans who are already comparing him to Gunners great Cesc Fabregas.

Reiss Nelson squandered a chance to double Arsenal’s lead when he fired too close to Pope, who also denied Matteo Guendouzi after another attack sliced through the Burnley defence.

But Burnley drew level in the 43rd minute when Dwight McNeil’s shot deflected to Barnes and he took advantage of Arsenal’s sloppy marking to poke home from close range for his third goal of the season.

Nelson had a goal ruled out for offside against Nacho Monreal moments later in what proved to be the young winger’s last contribution before he was replaced by Pepe at half-time.

Pope was in fine form and he pushed away Ceballos’s shot from the edge of the area, but even the Burnley keeper couldn’t stem the tide forever.

In the 64th minute, Ceballos tenaciously won possession and found Aubameyang, who accelerated towards the Burnley area.

With Burnley’s defenders backing off, Aubameyang had time and space to drill a blistering strike past Pope, sparking a fevered touchline celebration from Emery as Arsenal’s early-season momentum gathered pace.

African Trio Share Premier League Golden Boot

 

The race to be crowned the English Premier League’s leading scorer this season ended in a three-way tie on Sunday as the African trio of Sadio Mane, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Mohamed Salah shared the Golden Boot.

Gabon forward Aubameyang scored twice for Arsenal at Burnley to join Salah and his Liverpool teammate Mane, who netted a final-day double against Wolves, on 22 goals for the Premier League season.

Sergio Aguero, of champions Manchester City, was next in line with 21 goals.

Salah has now won the award two seasons in a row but this term’s winning tally was the lowest by players in English football’s top-flight since 2010/11 when Dimitar Berbatov and Carlos Tevez shared the Golden Boot with 20 goals apiece.

Aubameyang was delighted to be a member of an all-African trio of winners, saying in quotes reported by the BBC: “I share this trophy with two other guys I like, great players and African. We are representing Africa, that’s cool.

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“I am happy we won, and I am sharing this trophy with two other guys I like.

“My teammates knew about the Golden Boot, I said nothing. I did not want them to play and only focus on me. I am a team player.”

For Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp there was the satisfaction of knowing he had a played a part in the careers of all three of this season’s Golden Boot winners, having signed Aubameyang from Saint-Etienne in 2013 when he was in charge of Dortmund.

“Auba too? Do they have three boots?” said Klopp, who suffered the last-day heartache of seeing Liverpool finish just one point behind City.

“It is good. They are all my players,” the German added.

Salah scored 32 league goals last season, a record for a 38-game Premier League campaign.

The 26-year-old is the sixth player to win the Golden Boot award in consecutive seasons.

AFP

Arsenal Move Into Top Four With Victory Over 10-Man Watford

Arsenal’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang celebrates after scoring the opening goal of the English Premier League football match between Watford and Arsenal at Vicarage Road Stadium in Watford, north of London on April 15, 2019.
Ben STANSALL / AFP

 

Arsenal moved into the Premier League top four but made hard work of seeing off 10-man Watford 1-0 thanks to Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s fortunate early opener on Monday.

Aubameyang profited from an error by Watford goalkeeper Ben Foster as he blasted an attempted clearance in off the Gabon international.

Watford captain Troy Deeney was then shown a straight red card after just 11 minutes, but the Gunners failed to make the most of their man advantage and were fortunate as the hosts twice hit the woodwork.

However, Unai Emery’s men held out for a first clean sheet away from home in the Premier League this season to move ahead of Chelsea on goal difference into fourth.

Arsenal also edges to within a point of north London rivals Tottenham and two clear of Manchester United in the four-way battle for the two remaining Champions League places behind Liverpool and Manchester City.

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FA Cup finalists Watford were already shorn of the man who helped book their place at Wembley against Manchester City next month as Gerard Deulofeu missed out through injury and Javi Gracia’s side did themselves little favours early on.

Firstly, Foster dallied as Aubameyang closed in to concede a comical opener.

And within seconds, Deeney was punished for an elbow into the face of Lucas Torreira.

Arsenal now has just three days to prepare for the second leg of their Europa League quarter-final away to Napoli and should have ensured an easier finish.

Aubameyang saw another effort deflected behind at the end of a sweeping counter-attack, while Foster also turned over a fierce Alex Iwobi shot.

However, the 10 men were still causing problems to a defensively vulnerable Arsenal at the other end.

Craig Cathcart’s shot was turned onto the post by Bernd Leno and the German goalkeeper was also a full stretch to turn an Etienne Capoue free-kick behind.

Emery introduced Mesut Ozil at half-time in an attempt to improve Arsenal’s final ball with so much space to counter-attack into, but to little avail.

Iwobi looked to have provided the perfect cross to pick out Henrikh Mkhitaryan, but Foster made amends for his earlier error by spreading himself to make a brilliant save from the Armenian.

Arsenal’s terrible away record is why they face such a tight battle to secure Champions League football next season.

And they could have thrown just a second away league win since November away as Adam Masina crashed a 25-yard strike off the crossbar before Andre Gray miscontrolled Daryl Janmaat’s pass when clean through on Leno.

Gray was then denied by a last-ditch challenge from Ainsley Maitland-Niles after rounding Leno, but without the firepower of Deulofeu and Deeney, Watford’s brave effort fell just short.

AFP

Aubameyang Shines As Arsenal Beat Burnley 3-1

Arsenal’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (R) shoots past Burnley’s English defender Ben Mee to score their second goal during the English Premier League football match between Arsenal and Burnley at the Emirates Stadium in London on December 22, 2018. Ian KINGTON / AFP

 

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored twice as Arsenal returned to winning ways with a 3-1 victory against Burnley on Saturday after Mesut Ozil was restored to the starting line-up as captain.

Aubameyang’s two goals moved him clear of Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah as the Premier League’s leading goalscorer and kept Arsenal firmly in the hunt for a top-four finish.

His 11th and 12th strikes of the season gave Arsenal a 2-0 lead against Sean Dyche’s battling Burnley, who got back into the game through Ashley Barnes and rattled their hosts at times before substitute Alex Iwobi scored late on.

Arsenal boss Unai Emery said he expected a tough physical battle against Burnley, who are mired in the relegation zone after finishing seventh last season.

“Physicality is part of football and you need to be strong,” he told Sky Sports. “Both teams needed to impose themselves physically and with quality. We imposed our game plan and we are pleased with this.”

And Emery praised Ozil for his contribution to the win, saying he played “very well, very well”.  “We want Mesut like today,” he added.

Arsenal, who remain fifth in the Premier League, had gone 22 matches unbeaten in all competitions before last weekend’s defeat to Southampton and loss at home to Tottenham in their midweek League Cup quarter-final clash.

Former Germany international Ozil has been on the fringes of Emery’s team in recent weeks but was quickly into the thick of the action at the Emirates, playing a key role in Aubameyang’s opener.

That goal helped end a statistical quirk as it meant Arsenal led at half-time of a Premier League game for the first time this season.

Ozil was not in the squad for Wednesday’s match against Spurs and had not started in the league since November 11.

 Arsenal changes 

He was one of six changes from last week’s defeat at Southampton as Alexandre Lacazette was recalled, Sead Kolasinac started following a thigh problem and Mohamed Elneny came in for his first Premier League action of the campaign.

The 30-year-old Ozil was a mainstay in the Gunners side under previous manager Arsene Wenger but Emery has shown he has no issue with keeping the club’s highest-paid player on the sidelines.

Ozil’s lack of game-time, partly due to a back problem, has led to rumours linking him with a January move away from the club.

Both sides had early chances in the first match of the day in the Premier League but the Gunners took the lead following a delightful move in the 14th minute.

Arsenal toyed with the Burnley defence, looking for an opening, until Ozil played an incisive pass with his left-foot that found Kolasinac, whose cutback was steered home by Aubameyang.

Emery has been struggling for fit defenders and his cause was not helped as Nacho Monreal, only recently back from a hamstring injury, limped off before the interval to be replaced by Stephan Lichtsteiner.

Gabon international Aubameyang pulled ahead of Salah in the goalscoring charts in the 48th minute, smashing the ball high past Burnley goalkeeper Joe Hart after a swift counter-attack.

Barnes pulled a goal back for the visitors after Arsenal failed to clear in the 63rd minute and the home fans grew increasingly nervous as Burnley pushed for an equaliser but they sealed the win in added time, when Iwobi pounced after good work again by Ozil.

“Overall today I think we deserved something from the game,” a disappointed Dyche told Sky Sports. “We gave away soft goals and we have to get out of that habit but we were a game for them.”

Why Arsenal Fought Back, Beat Tottenham – Aubameyang

Why Arsenal Fought Back, Beat Tottenham – Aubameyang
Arsenal’s Gabonese striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (C) celebrates after scoring the opening goal from the penalty spot during the English Premier League football match against Tottenham Hotspur at the Emirates Stadium in London on December 2, 2018. Ian KINGTON / IKIMAGES / AFP

 

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang said Arsenal were confident they could fight back against Tottenham despite seeing their early lead wiped out at the Emirates on Sunday.

Unai Emery’s side extended their unbeaten run to 19 matches in all competitions after battling back from 2-1 down at half-time in the Premier League thriller to win 4-2.

Aubameyang’s penalty had put Arsenal ahead before Eric Dier’s header and a Harry Kane spot-kick gave Tottenham the lead at the break.

Arsenal hit back in thrilling style.

READ ALSO: Arsenal Beat Tottenham 4-2 In Premier League Derby

Aubameyang levelled the scores at 2-2 with a superb long-range equaliser before Alexandre Lacazette came off the bench to put Arsenal ahead and Lucas Torreira sealed the points with his first goal for the club.

“After the first goal we conceded, we had a moment where we were a bit down, but at half-time we were confident,” Aubameyang told Sky Sports.

“We spoke, we knew that we can do it in the second half. With the fans, the atmosphere, we felt strong and could go for the win.

“I think we can see always in the second half we played very well, we don’t give up. That’s the mentality.”

The win lifts Arsenal above Tottenham into fourth in the table, but Aubameyang said that was not the main concern.

“The most important thing is the present right now,” he said. “We are looking of course to continue this series. We are still winning games and we’re on an unbeaten run so we have to keep going.”

AFP