Arsenal beaten at Anfield and drop out of Premier League top four places
Arsenal were beaten 3-1 by Liverpool at Anfield in the Premier League this evening.
The result moves Liverpool up to third place in the table, whilst Arsenal drop to fifth place.
Liverpool are unbeaten in their nine Premier League games this season against the current top six (W5 D4). and completeD the double over Arsenal. Having won 4-3 at the Emirates Stadium on the opening weekend of the season in August.
By contrast Arsenal haven’t won any of their last 11 Premier League away games vs the other current top six teams (W0 D5 L6).
Arsene Wenger started Alexis Sanchez on the bench. Clearly deciding that Tuesday’s Champion League tie with Bayern Munich takes precedence over chasing Premier League points. Despite Arsenal trailing 5-1 in the tie after their pummeling in Munich in the first leg.
By the time Sanchez was introduced as a substitute at the start of the second half, the Gunners were 2-0 down.
Liverpool opened the scoring in the 9th minute through Roberto Firmino, who was set up by Sadio Mane. The Brazilian finished from just outside the six-yard area.
It took Firmino’s tally to 3 goals in 4 Premier League games against Arsenal,
Mane doubled the hosts lead in the 41st minute when he finished from 12 yards out.
Sanchez inevitably had a hand in Arsenal pulling a goal back in the 56th minute.
He played a pass into the path of Danny Welbeck, who clipped the ball past the advancing Simon Mignolet into the net.
It was Welbeck’s first-ever Premier League goal against Liverpool in his 11th appearance against them.
Georginio Wijnaldum sealed the three points for Liverpool in injury time.
Adam Lallana released Divock Origi, who crossed for Wijnaldum. The Dutchman’s finish found the corner of the net.
Speaking to BT Sport after the match Arsene Wenger said.
“We had problems getting into the rhythm of the first half.
“We conceded cheap goals – direct balls from the goalkeeper and you do not expect that in a game like this but we came back in the second half, responded well, but didn’t perform at our level in the first half.”
On not starting Alexis Sanchez, he added “I felt the strikers suffered in the first half and we didn’t dominate in the midfield. It is always debatable.”
On whether Arsenal will finish in the top four he said. “It is a possibility to be in it as well so let’s focus on that.”
Arsenal: Cech, Bellerin, Monreal, Koscielny, Mustafi, Coquelin (Sanchez), Xhaka, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Iwobi, Giroud (Perez), Welbeck (Walcott)