Arsenal power past Cardiff in five-goal fest


Arsenal power past Cardiff in five-goal fest
Soccer Football - Premier League - Cardiff City v Arsenal - Cardiff City Stadium, Cardiff, Britain - September 2, 2018 Arsenal's Alexandre Lacazette celebrates scoring their third goal with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang REUTERS/Rebecca Naden EDITORIAL USE ONLY. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or "live" services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications. Please contact your account representative for further details.

In Summary

  • The first period especially was a game full of attacking intent and flimsy defensive resistance on both sides and Lacazette underlined the danger he posed when he rattled the inside of the post on 33 minutes as Arsenal streamed forward.
  • Emery's men almost replicated their opening goal when Mustafi got a firm header to Xhaka's corner, but this time Etheridge repelled the danger.
  • Morrison's late header over the bar with Cech completely stranded almost provided even further drama, but Arsenal held on.

The first period especially was a game full of attacking intent and flimsy defensive resistance on both sides and Lacazette underlined the danger he posed when he rattled the inside of the post on 33 minutes as Arsenal streamed forward.

Emery’s men almost replicated their opening goal when Mustafi got a firm header to Xhaka’s corner, but this time Etheridge repelled the danger.

Lacazette and Aubameyang struggled to find a rapport at times, but were perfectly in-tune just past the hour mark when they combined beautifully to allow Aubameyang to curl home from just outside the area, his 150th goal in one of Europe’s top five leagues.

Arsenal’s quest for a goal is finally fruitful

While Arsenal always catch the eye in attack, the Bluebirds had failed to hit the target in their first three fixtures back in the top flight, extending their run to 1,597 days without a Premier League goal since Peter Whittingham’s penalty on 19 April, 2014 against Stoke City.

They probably feared more of the same when they spurned a golden opportunity inside 10 minutes, when midfielder Harry Arter blazed over the crossbar despite being presented the ball by Arsenal goalkeeper Petr Cech. Arter also blazed over in first-half stoppage time as Cardiff looked a little bereft of ideas in attack.

Ward was within an inch or so of turning home Bobby Dercordova-Reid’s cross, while the former Bristol City forward also acrobatically volleyed over after Ward failed to find a compelling touch following Junior Hoilett’s cross.

It seemed it was going to be yet another frustrating half for Cardiff, but Arsenal allowed more shots on target to the opposition in their first three games (24) than any other Premier League side and on the stroke of half time, they let Cardiff in.

The Gunners failed to deal with Joe Bennett’s cross and summer signing Camarasa stole in between Mustafi and Monreal, twisting away from the latter and rifling the ball past Cech into the roof of the net.

The Bluebirds barely created even a half chance in the second period with Arsenal again seizing the advantage, but they found a goal from nothing with 20 minutes remaining when Sean Morrison flicked on a free-kick and Ward crashed home a header off the inside of the post.

It set up a grandstand finish where both sides pushed to win the match, with Reid bursting clear and firing straight at Cech, before Lacazette’s stunning finish ensured all three points would head back to north London when he escaped Sol Bamba’s slack marking and thundered the ball in at the near post.

Morrison’s late header over the bar with Cech completely stranded almost provided even further drama, but Arsenal held on.

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Story By Reuters
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