Arsenal v Southampton

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Post-Match Report

Arsenal 3-2 Southampton: How it happened

Southampton -

Emirates Stadium
Premier League
Premier League
  Arsenal
      
                  Aubameyang (28')
                   Welbeck (38'
                   81')
            
   crest
Arsenal
Aubameyang (28')
Welbeck (38'
81')
3 2
  Southampton
      
              S. Long (17')
               C. Austin (73')
          
   crest
Southampton
S. Long (17') C. Austin (73')

WHAT HAPPENED

Danny Welbeck scored two and made one as we edged an end-to-end encounter to record our sixth straight win.
 
We started brightly with Reiss Nelson to the fore on his first Premier League start, but Southampton denied us a clear chance in the opening stages and then struck themselves.
 
Cedric crossed from the right, Shkodran Mustafi hesitated and Shane Long nipped in front of him to divert the ball past Petr Cech.
 
We lacked rhythm and penetration after that setback but it all came together just before the half-hour mark.
 
Alex Iwobi found Welbeck and his deft flick was converted by Aubameyang, who beat goalkeeper Alex McCarthy to the ball by a split-second to prod it into the net.
 
Aubameyang has now been involved in seven goals in his first seven Premier League games, scoring six and assisting once. That’s an Arsenal record.

 
Welbeck deserves credit for his part in that goal, and the England man started and finished the move that gave us the lead.
 
Winning possession inside his own half, Welbeck raced forward to get on the end of an exquisite through-ball from Iwobi.
 
There was still plenty to do but Welbeck did it, cutting inside and holding off two challenges to fire a deflected shot beyond McCarthy.
 
Aubameyang, Granit Xhaka and Alex Iwobi were all denied by McCarthy as we started the second half strongly, but Southampton crept back into the game.
 
Mohamed Elneny cleared Wesley Hoedt’s header off the line and Cech denied Long, but Charlie Austin came off the bench to grab an equaliser with his first touch.
 
Welbeck missed from a couple of yards but made amends with a far-post header from Iwobi’s cross - a considerably tougher chance.
 
The game ended in controversy with red cards shown to Jack Stephens - after an altercation with Jack Wilshere - and Elneny.
 
But the points were ours. 


HOW IT HAPPENED

See how the match unfolded and get the standout stats with our play-by-play commentary.

WHAT IT MEANS

We stay in sixth place in the Premier League but keep the pressure up on fifth-placed Chelsea.
 
Burnley are five points behind us in seventh after beating Watford 2-1 on Saturday.

WHAT’S NEXT

We’re heading to Moscow for the second leg of our Europa League quarter-final against CSKA on Thursday - with a 4-1 lead to defend.
 
Our next Premier League game is next Sunday against Newcastle United at St. James’ Park.

REISS WATCH

Reiss Nelson made his first start in the Premier League on Sunday. These were his best moments:
 
1 - Nelson lines up on the right of our front three and finds a teammate with a confident first touch inside 10 seconds
 
2 - Feints to pass the ball inside and jinks outside Tadic, who brings him down to concede a free-kick
 
9 - Sprints back to tackle Bertrand
 
35 - We win a free-kick and Nelson wants to take it… but Xhaka has other ideas
 
42 - Nelson links up well with Bellerin as the two exchange a series of slick one-twos on the right
 
43 - Nelson threads a good ball through to Iwobi as we counter-attack at pace, but the move breaks down when Aubameyang’s cross is cleared
 
47 - A clever flick from Nelson allows Elneny to set up Xhaka for a powerful shot that McCarthy does well to save
 
64 - Nelson is replaced by Jack Wilshere

Interview

Why did Aubameyang go off against Southampton?

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored his sixth goal in seven Premier League appearances on Sunday - but he didn’t finish the game.

Our record signing was replaced by Alex Lacazette in the second half, and Arsene Wenger explained his decision when he spoke to Arsenal.com.

“No [he’s not injured],” said the boss.

“He looked a bit jaded in the end and I wanted to give Lacazette 20 minutes as well. Overall it worked well.”

The Breakdown

Analysis: How inspired Iwobi pulled the strings

We made it six wins in succession on Sunday as we beat Southampton 3-2 in a thrilling encounter at Emirates Stadium.

In the latest episode of The Breakdown, Adrian Clarke examines the match in detail, focusing on:

    •    The interplay between Welbeck and Aubameyang
    •    How Reiss Nelson did on his full Premier League debut
    •    The indecision and lapses in concentration at the back
    •    Alex Iwobi's outstanding contribution in attack

Team news

The latest on Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s injury

Henrikh Mkhitaryan was forced off in the second half of our Europa League win over CSKA Moscow on Thursday.

After Sunday’s game against Southampton, Arsene Wenger gave us an update on his situation.

“He’s got knee ligament damage,” confirmed the boss.

“He will not be available for Thursday and not for Newcastle and certainly not for the week after, when we play West Ham.

“I think he will miss these games for sure, but he could still play at the end of the season.”

Video

Watch all the goals from the Southampton win

We made it six wins in succession thanks to a hard-fought 3-2 victory over Southampton on Sunday.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored his sixth goal in seven games for us in the first half, after Shane Long had put the visitors in front. Danny Welbeck levelled and, after Charlie Austin brought the hosts level, our No 23 headed home our late winner.

You can now watch extended highlights from the game above, plus scroll down for a full match replay, a short bitesize clip and video of all the game's talking points - including the incident which saw Jack Stephens and Mohamed Elneny sent off just before full-time.

 

Press conference

Will we appeal Mohamed Elneny’s red card?

Mohamed Elneny is sent off against Southampton

The boss gives his view on the talking points after our 3-2 win over Southampton at the Emirates

Arsene Wenger was proud of the players after they dug deep to pull off a 3-2 victory over Southampton on Sunday - and make it six wins on the bounce.

The boss gave his usual post-match analysis shortly after the game. Here’s what he said:

on the win…
We want to continue to win our games. I wanted to rotate a little bit because we play so many games that I have no other way to do things. I wanted to pick a team that had a chance to win the game. On top of that, we were questioned. Southampton were leading, they came back to 2-2, and every time I believe we have shown great spirit, even if at the end of the game it was a bit hectic. I must say when you come to the Emirates, you see football and you see goals. That’s what you want to give to our fans.

on being exposed at the back…
We have an offensive team. That means as well the defenders are not always in the best possible conditions to defend, having to find a better balance in defending. I think recently we have done well and I believe on Thursday night, physically it was at a very, very high level and players like Bellerin and Mustafi had heavy legs today.

on recovering from going behind...
I’m very proud of that because I think we have been through a difficult patch, where the mentality of the team has been questioned and to recover from that you need solidarity, which is what they've shown. And as well today in the game when it was not all easy we again found the resources to win the game. I was always confident because I see this team behave every day and you can only be proud of their behaviour.

on his view of the red cards…
I haven’t seen what happened with Jack, honestly. Elneny, I was a bit surprised that he was sent off, because he’s a fair player, he’s not an aggressive player. Has he touched the player in his face or not? I don’t know if he’s done it. I think it was accidental.

on if he’ll appeal Elneny’s red…
I have to see it again. I haven’t seen it well enough to tell you. If possible, we’ll look at it tomorrow and see if we have grounds for an appeal or not. I don’t know yet.

 

Interview

‘Red cards? Everyone’s competitive side came out’

Calum Chambers ended up on the winning side against his former club on Sunday thanks to two goals from Danny Welbeck and one from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

The centre back spoke to reporters after the game and here’s what he said:

on what happened at the end…

It’s a football game and everyone wants to win, so you see everyone’s competitive side come out. I thought we held our own well and saw through the job.

on Southampton…

It’s the Premier League and every game is tough. We saw that today. Every team we come up against has quality players, so it’s never easy. We held our own, fought until the end and got the win.

on fighting back and showing character…

Yeah, we’ve got good momentum at the moment and good character in the group. The boys all fight until the very end, we believe in ourselves. It’s good playing [in this team] at the moment.

on Welbeck…

There’s great depth in this squad. There’s some rotation going on and we had Danny scoring goals and Reiss Nelson as well getting game time, which is good to see. I think the depth in the squad is very good and you can see that. We’re just going to keep pushing until the end of the season.

Interview

Nelson - You keep all the nerves inside you

Reiss Nelson on his full Premier League debut, against Southampton in April 2018

Reiss Nelson’s hard work is paying off.

The 18-year-old got his first Premier League start on Sunday and showed glimpses of his obvious potential in our 3-2 win over Southampton.

“I’m just delighted, I’m really happy - all the hard work is paying off so I’m really happy and excited to push on even further,” Nelson told Arsenal.com.

“It’s been a normal week for me, training with the boys. On Thursday I spoke to the boss and he told me I might be in. From then I had it in the back of my mind that I could be starting, so I trained really hard on Friday and then the teamsheet came out and I was delighted to be starting.

“I just treated it as a normal game and I think that’s the best thing to do. Being involved with the first team, be it in the Premier League or the Europa League, you just have to take it as it comes. You keep all the nerves inside and just play your normal game.”

But Nelson will have to wait a while to move up the pecking order when it comes to dead balls. He takes free-kicks for the under-23s but made way for Granit Xhaka when Southampton were penalised 25 yards from goal in the first half.

“I wanted the free-kick!” said Nelson with a smile. “It’s one of those things but next time hopefully I can take it!”

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