Reiss Nelson scored a wonderful winner with virtually the last kick of the game to secure a huge win against Bournemouth and cap a two-goal comeback.
Goals from Thomas Partey and Ben White had seen us battle back from two goals down, before the substitute smashed home a belter to win it deep into stoppage time.
After falling behind to Philip Billing’s goal after just 9.11 seconds, things got worse after the break when Marcos Senesi headed home a second.
However Partey provided us a lifeline when he scored after a corner wasn’t cleared effectively, and then White picked the perfect time to score his first Gunners goal with 20 minutes remaining to give us a share of the spoils before Nelson's big moment.
Nightmare after nine seconds
The game got off to the worst possible start as were caught napping and conceded the second-quickest goal in Premier League history. Dominic Solanke played the kick-off to Joe Rothwell, who released Dango Ouattara speeding down the right flank, and his low centre deflected into the path of Billing who tucked the ball home to stun Emirates Stadium.
Despite that, we initially responded well to the setback and Neto began to be put to work between the Bournemouth posts. Firstly, Martin Odegaard tricked his way to the edge of the box and the Brazilian keeper did well to keep his low shot out, and then stood up big to prevent Bukayo Saka from putting in the rebound, and not long after he had to deal with an Odegaard tester from range.
While the rest of the opening half was pretty much one-way traffic in our favour, only an excellent save from Aaron Ramsdale prevented us from going 2-0 down after 19 minutes. After one of our numerous forays forward, the visitors sprung a counter-attack and Billing squared for Ouattara who looked set to score, but our number one rushed out and made a fine stop to keep us in contention.
Cherries double the lead
Things got worse when Leandro Trossard was forced off through injury moments later with Emile Smith Rowe taking his place, and while we pushed hard for an equaliser before the break, Gabriel Martinelli's shot into the side-netting in the last action before the whistle was as close as we came.
A response was needed after the interval, but after Odegaard and Martinelli had both had sights of goal without really troubling Neto, the Cherries doubled their advantage. Rothwell swung in a corner which was met by the head of Senesi and flew into the net to give us a mountain to climb.
However we took our first steps when we pulled one back on 61 minutes. A Saka corner saw Neto try to punch clear, but it lacked distance and Smith Rowe headed the ball to the back post for Partey to tuck home and restore hope to the home supporters.
The Cherries almost swiftly restored their lead but again Ramsdale made an excellent reaction save to deny Solanke from a tight angle, and that proved vital as we managed to draw level after 69 minutes.
Nelson - just introduced off the bench - scampered down the left and sent in a cross to the back post, and White appeared unmarked to drive it goalwards and just over the line before Neto pushed it away, with the goalline technology confirming the ball had crossed the line.
Roared on by a passionate crowd, we threw everything into finding a winner, and Saka hit the post after a scramble inside the box before Martinelli raced clear of the Bournemouth backline before putting his shot over the bar. It didn't look like it would be our day.
However, in the seventh minute of stoppage time, a corner was cleared to Nelson on the edge of the box, and he chested it down before smashing into the net past a helpless Neto to send Emirates Stadium into ecstasy and maintain our five-point lead at the top of the table.
Facts and stats
We have won a Premier League game in which we trailed by 2+ goals for the first time since February 2012 vs Tottenham (5-2) having gone winless in 65 such games prior to today.
Bournemouth have lost three of their last four Premier League games in which they’ve led by 2+ goals (W1).
Reiss Nelson’s winner (96:57) was our second-latest 90th-minute winner on record in the Premier League (since 2006/07), after Alexis Sanchez’s penalty against Burnley in January 2017 (97:14).
We have scored more 90th-minute winners than any other side in the Premier League this season (3). It’s the joint-most 90th-minute winners we have scored in a single season in the competition.
Philip Billing's opener was scored in 9.11 seconds - the second-fastest goal scored in Premier League history, after Shane Long for Southampton v Watford in April 2019 (7:69).
Ben White became our 14th different goalscorer in the Premier League this season, more than any other side (excluding own goals).
Nelson has been directly involved in more Premier League goals as a substitute than any other player this season (5 – 3 goals, 2 assists).
We head to Portugal on Thursday to face Sporting SP in the first leg of our Europa Lague last 16 tie, before we return to league action on Sunday, March 8 when we take on Fulham at Craven Cottage.
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