Shambolic Arsenal lose to AFC Bournemouth from winning position
AFC Bournemouth came from behind to beat Arsenal 2-1 in their Premier League clash at the Vitality Stadium this afternoon.
The Cherries goals were scored by Callum Wilson (70) and Jordan Ibe (74), after Hector Bellerin (52) had put Arsenal ahead.
It was the home teams first ever win over Arsenal in any competition.
Bournemouth had lost 11 of their last 15 Premier League games after conceding the first goal.
The victory moves them up from 17th up to 13th in the Premier League table and they are four points clear of the relegation zone.
Arsenal remain in 6th place in the table and are five points behind fourth placed Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur.
The Gunners have only won three of their 12 away league games this season and have conceded ten goals in their last five league matches
Arsene Wenger serving the last of his three-match touchline ban, made just one change to his team from mid-week the midweek League Cup semi-final with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge; Petr Cech replacing David Ospina in-goal.
Neither Alexis Sanchez or Mesut Ozil were in the Arsenal squad.
It was the home side who threatened first. Adam Smith shooting just wide of Petr Cech’s goal.
At the other end Jack Wilshere played in Hector Bellerin on the right. But his ball across the face of goal was cleared by Simon Francis.
Ainsley-Maitland-Niles then hit the top of the crossbar with a shot from inside the penalty area.
Alex Iwobi’s deflected shot forced a save from Asmir Begovic. with the keeper turning the ball round the post for a corner.
Bournemouth then enjoyed a spell of better possession helped by a couple of misplaced passes from Arsenal players.
Ryan Fraser got down the by-line down before crossing low into the area, but the ball was gathered by Cech.
Begovic then denied Welbeck on a one-on-one after a through ball from Lacazette. The ball rebounded to the Frenchman whose miscued shot was cleared by Steve Cook.
As the match went into final first five minutes of the first half, the Cherries had a shout for a penalty, when Jordon Ibe’s free-kick was blocked by Alex Iwobi’s arm. Referee Kevin Friend though wasn’t convinced it was deliberate
Then Calum Chambers was on hand to block a shot from Dan Gosling.
The match went into the break goalless. The Gunners had enjoyed 58% of possession, but only managed to get two shots on target.
Arsenal went ahead seven minutes into the second half.
Alex Iwobi’s through ball found Hector Bellerin with a clear run on goal. His shot was blocked by Begovic but looped up over the keeper and into the net.
It meant that Bellerin had scored in successive Premier League match after netting an injury-time equaliser against Chelsea last time out.
Petr Cech had to be alert as the match went into its final quarter to hold a Jordon Ibe shot.
Cech though was beaten in the 7oth minute. It was more woeful defending from Arsenal.
Ryan Fraser crossed into the box and Callum Wilson beat Cech to the ball and turned it the ball into the net. Cech’s decision to come of his line was punished.
It was to get even worse for Arsenal and Cech four minutes later when they went behind.
This time Wilson was the provider setting up Jordan Ibe to score from the edge of the penalty area. There was no challenge on Wilson who had time to set up Ibe, and the shot went through Cech to find the back of the net.
Arsenal’s efforts to force an equaliser carried little conviction, with both Xhaka and Wilshere dragging shots tamely wide.
So another away defeat for Arsenal, the fifth in the league this season.
Arsenal: Cech, Bellerin, Chambers (Ramesy), Mustafi, Holding, Maitland-Niles, Xhaka, Wilshere, Iwobi (Walcott), Welbeck, Lacazette.