Arsenal come from behind to beat Stoke City 3-1
Arsenal came from a goal down to beat Stoke City 3-1 at the Emirates Stadium this afternoon.
The result moves the Gunners above Chelsea at the top of the Premier League table.
The Blues will take back top spot with a win or draw against West Bromwich Albion at Stamford Bridge tomorrow.
Despite taking the lead Stoke City are still searching for their first points at the Emirates Stadium.
The Potters have lost all nine matches against the Gunners at the Emirates Stadium.
And it is now fourteen visits to Highbury and the Emirates Stadium since Stoke City’s last win in August 1981.
Whilst Mark Hughes has now lost all 10 of the away matches he has managed against Arsenal in the Premier League.
It also started so well for Stoke City. Marc Muniesa forced Petr Cech to tip the ball over the bar with a 30-yard volley.
They took the lead in the minute 29th minute, when referee Lee Mason decided that Granit Xhaka had elbowed Joe Allen and awarded a penalty.
After a long delay for treatment to Allen, Charlie Adam converted the penalty, with Petr Cech diving the wrong way.
Arsenal then endured a frustrating period with keeper Lee Grant taking an inordinate amount of time to take every goal kick.
Grant also made a one-handed save low down to deny Theo Walcott an equaliser.
At the other end Marko Arnautovic ran through the Arsenal defence as Stoke attempted to double their lead. But the Austrian was crowded out before he could get his shot away.
Just when it seemed that Stoke would take their lead into the half-time break, the Gunners opened up the Potters defence o draw level..
Substitute Hector Bellerin, who had replaced Shkodran Mustafi, was played in on the right and his cross was neatly converted at the near post by Walcott. Mustafi could be ruled out for around three weeks.
Bellerin has assisted seven-league goals since the start of last season, more than any other defender.
It was Walcott’s 100th club goal. The only English player with more Premier League goals than Walcott (seven) this season is Jermain Defoe (eight).
Arsenal started the second half on the front foot and took the lead in the forty-ninth minute.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain played a pin-point pass over the Stoke defence for Mesut Ozil to head the ball over Grant for his ninth league goal of the season.
Substitute Alex Iwobi wrapped up the three points when he stroked the ball past Grant. Referee Mason played a good advantage when he waved play on when Alexis Sanchez was tripped on the edge of the penalty area in the build-up.
It has been a good week for Iwobi who scored against Basel in the Champions League on Tuesday.
Potters substitute Peter Crouch nearly scored with his first touch, but his downward header was saved by Cech and the rebound cleared a corner.
So the win moved Arsenal above Chelsea, having scored four more goals than the Blues. They are level on 34 points with a goal difference of +21.
Arsenal are away to Everton on Tuesday (19:45) before travelling to fourth-placed Manchester City on Sunday, 18 December (16:00).
Arsenal: Cech 7, Gabriel 7, Koscielny 6, Mustafi 5 (Bellerin 7), Monreal 6, Xhaka 6, Coquelin 6, Walcott 8, Oxlade-Chamberlain 6 (Iwobi), Ozil 7, Sanchez 7 (Giroud)