Arsenal marked their 400th game at the Emirates Stadium with a defeat. The Gunners fell to a narrow defeat at hands of struggling Burnley on Sunday night. They were reduced to 10 men in the second half and their captain Aubameyang scored an own goal shortly after Xhaka’s red card to pile more misery on Mikel Arteta.
Match report: Arsenal 0-1 Burnley
Arsenal were desperately in need of a win to help their course of moving out of the bottom half of the table. Burnley at home looked like the perfect game to get things started, but the North Londoners were pegged back by a more desperate Burnley side.
👀 Bottom of the table Sheffield United have created more clear-cut goal-scoring chances (15) than Arsenal (13) in the Premier League this season pic.twitter.com/9NB9UKKFbD
— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) December 14, 2020
The first half lacked clear cut chances with both teams playing cautiously but the host did manage to craft out some half chances. Arsenal felt they should have had a penalty when Aubameyang saw his shot deflect behind off Ben Mee’s arm for a goal kick. Holding could not keep his header down after rising highest to meet a cross from Bukayo Saka, while Lacazette was denied by a fine Nick Pope save after connecting well with a Kieran Tierney cut-back. With things level at halftime, Arsenal came out in the second period with more urgency and were gaining control over the game before an unfortunate turn of events.
First, Granit Xhaka was involved in an off the ball altercation with Burnley’s Ashley Westwood. Referee Graham Scott initially flashed a yellow card but after consultation with the VAR, upgraded it to red card. Off goes Xhaka and minutes later, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (who has been having a barren spell in front of goal) headed into his own net. Westwood had taken a corner which the striker tried to defend but inadvertently flicked past Bernd Leno. That spelt doom for 10-man Arsenal who could not find a way back into the game.
Woeful domestic form
Arsenal are currently closer to the relegation zone than to the top 4. They occupy 15th place heading into the festive period, and have just 13 points after 12 games. Arteta’s wards have now lost 7 times in the league this season. In contrast, they finished top of their Europa league group with a 100% win rate Arsenal will know their round of 32 opponents when the Europa League draw holds later today.