Arsenal 5 Tottenham 2 - The lads bounce back
Report of match 17th November 2012
But this result doesn't hide persistent failings.
This was a must win game both in terms of our points tally, and our general level of confidence. I have to say though that it's worrying when the players can raise their game for an encounter of this importance, but can't beat lesser opposition.
There are underlying problems that clearly need to be addressed, and I see today's result as a good win rather that a new dawn.
Here's the report:
A moment of madness from Emmanuel Adebayor sparked a spectacular Tottenham collapse as Arsenal romped to a 5-2 victory in an entertaining north London derby at the Emirates Stadium.
Adebayor scored against his former employers to give Tottenham a 10th-minute lead, but he pressed the self-destruct button seven minutes later when he was given a straight red for a horrific sliding tackle on the excellent Santi Cazorla.
Tottenham struggled to cope with the numerical disadvantage thereafter and it only took a few minutes for Per Mertesacker to equalise.
Lukas Podolski's strike, and Olivier Giroud's fifth goal in his last five games gave Arsenal a comfortable two-goal cushion by half-time.
Tottenham fared slightly better in the second half, but their only reward came through a Gareth Bale consolation after Cazorla killed the contest.
To add insult to injury Theo Walcott grabbed a deserved goal in injury time to make the score the same as the 5-2 win that Arsenal used as a springboard for their Champions League assault last season.
Arsenal's victory means they jump above Tottenham in the table, while Spurs have now suffered four successive defeats under Andre Villas-Boas, who will have questions to answer about why he decided to play Adebayor if there were doubts about whether the striker could keep a lid on his emotions.
It was clear from the off that Adebayor was pumped up for the clash. After being snubbed by his former team-mates in the tunnel, he tussled aggressively with Jack Wilshere for the ball inside the first minute.
The Togolese's every touch was booed during an opening five minutes which was bereft of goal-mouth action, but packed with passion thanks to the white-hot atmosphere inside the Emirates Stadium.
William Gallas, whose status as a former Gunner also meant he was jeered constantly, thought he had given Spurs an early lead when he intercepted Tom Huddlestone's shot and curled a shot past Wojciech Szczesny, but the Frenchman was correctly given offside.
One minute later Spurs did have the lead, however, through their controversial number 10. Szczesny palmed Jermain Defoe's shot in to Adebayor's path and he twisted his body to tap in to an empty net.
The striker, famed for running the whole length of the pitch to celebrate in front of Arsenal's fans three years ago, hurdled the advertising boards and goaded the irate home support.
Such was the vitriol against Adebayor that some of the home fans were ejected for hurling abuse at the 28-year-old.
Seven minutes later the home fans were jeering Adebayor off after his awful foul on Cazorla.
Studs showing, the Spurs striker propelled himself in to a high tackle on the Spaniard, who was in mid-air and Howard Webb had no option but to send the player off.
Arsenal peppered the Tottenham box as the visitors struggled to cope with the one-man deficit.
The inevitable equaliser came after 23 minutes. Walcott latched on to Wilshere's ball and crossed for Mertesacker, who headed past Hugo Lloris after Huddlestone went missing in the box.
Villas-Boas checked his notepad for inspiration, but he must have known there was little he could do to stop Arsenal from taking the lead.
Lloris, making just his second league start, did his best to keep the Gunners out, saving twice in succession from Giroud.
Cazorla bent a swirling drive just over Lloris' bar as Tottenham tried to hold on until the break, but Huddlestone then gifted the Gunners the lead.
The midfielder, recalled to the England squad this week, poked Mikel Arteta's pass unwittingly in to the path of Podolski and his shot deflected off Gallas past Lloris.
Arsenal bagged their third in first-half injury time. Kyle Naughton knocked Cazorla down but he picked himself up and squared to Giroud, who beat Gallas to the ball and dispatched a close-range finish.
Kyle Walker and Bale remonstrated with Webb as they left the field at half-time, but in reality there was little they could complain about.
Villas-Boas brought on Michael Dawson and Clint Dempsey and moved to 3-5-1, but the move made little impact as Arsenal remained in control.
Lloris managed to keep the hosts out for 14 minutes before Arsenal hit on the break through Walcott and Podolski, who found Cazorla at the back post and he made no mistake from five yards.
Only a crucial block by Gallas stopped Arsenal from scoring their fifth as the hosts threatened a record-breaking victory margin.
Bale then restored a bit of pride for the away side with 20 minutes to go when he outpaced Mertesacker and drove past Szczesny through Laurent Koscielny's legs.
Flashes of Spurs' Bale-inspired near comeback against Inter Milan flashed in to the minds of the away support as the winger again went charging down the left and cut in to the box but this time the his shot flew wide.
As the clock ticked towards 90 minutes Tottenham started to throw more bodies forward, but they were left exposed at the back.
Defoe attempted a 10-yard volley while unmarked at the back post but he missed the ball Thomas Vermaelen shot just wide and Arsenal finished off the rout in injury time when Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain took advantage of a Jan Vertonghen mistake to play in Walcott.
|Competition: Barclays Premier League Kick Off: 12:45 Venue: Ashburton Grove Attendance: 60,111|
|5 - 2||Tottenham H.
|90+4||Corner taken short by Theo Walcott.|
|90+4||Short corner taken by Theo Walcott.|
|90+1||Theo Walcott finds the net with a goal from inside the penalty box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Arsenal 5-2 Tottenham.Assist on the goal came from Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.|
|88||Jan Vertonghen challenges Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain unfairly and gives away a free kick. Santi Cazorla takes the free kick.|
|86||Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain takes a shot. Gareth Bale gets a block in.|
|84||Clarindo Andre Santos concedes a free kick for a foul on Raniere Sandro. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain is brought on as a substitute for Olivier Giroud. Hugo Lloris restarts play with the free kick.|
|83||Shot by Thomas Vermaelen from deep inside the penalty area misses to the left of the goal.|
|79||Lukas Podolski concedes a free kick for a foul on Jan Vertonghen. Booking for Lukas Podolski for unsporting behaviour. Clarindo Andre Santos on for Lukas Podolski. Michael Dawson takes the free kick.|
|78||Tom Carroll takes the outswinging corner, clearance by Olivier Giroud.|
|76||Corner taken by Gareth Bale.|
|73||The referee blows for offside against Olivier Giroud. Michael Dawson takes the indirect free kick.|
|72||Shot by Gareth Bale from deep inside the penalty area misses to the right of the target.|
|71||Aaron Ramsey is brought on as a substitute for Jack Wilshere. (Tottenham) makes a substitution, with Tom Carroll coming on for Tom Huddlestone.|
|70||Gareth Bale finds the net with a goal from outside the penalty box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Arsenal 4-2 Tottenham.Raniere Sandro provided the assist for the goal.|
|69||Laurent Koscielny gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Clint Dempsey. Free kick taken by Michael Dawson.|
|66||Corner taken by Theo Walcott, clearance by Jan Vertonghen.|
|65||Raniere Sandro gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Olivier Giroud. Booking for Raniere Sandro. Mikel Arteta takes the free kick.|
|64||Inswinging corner taken left-footed by Gareth Bale from the right by-line.|
|63||Jermain Defoe is adjudged to have handled the ball. Laurent Koscielny restarts play with the free kick.|
|63||Tom Huddlestone fouled by Jack Wilshere, the ref awards a free kick. Jan Vertonghen takes the free kick.|
|61||Shot from just outside the box by Olivier Giroud goes over the bar.|
|60||Theo Walcott takes a shot. Blocked by Michael Dawson.|
|59||Santi Cazorla finds the back of the net with a goal from inside the penalty box to the bottom right corner of the goal. Arsenal 4-1 Tottenham.Assist on the goal came from Lukas Podolski.|
|58||Unfair challenge on Clint Dempsey by Olivier Giroud results in a free kick. Michael Dawson takes the direct free kick.|
|57||Theo Walcott takes the outswinging corner, Gareth Bale manages to make a clearance.|
|51||Foul by Thomas Vermaelen on Aaron Lennon, free kick awarded. Free kick crossed right-footed by Tom Huddlestone.|
|50||Tom Huddlestone takes a inswinging corner to the near post, clearance made by Lukas Podolski.|
|47||Jack Wilshere is caught offside. Free kick taken by Hugo Lloris.|
|47||Unfair challenge on Olivier Giroud by Clint Dempsey results in a free kick. Mikel Arteta takes the direct free kick.|
|46||Corner taken by Tom Huddlestone played to the near post, Lukas Podolski manages to make a clearance.|
|45||Clint Dempsey comes on in place of Kyle Naughton. Michael Dawson comes on in place of Kyle Walker.|
|45+1||Goal scored by Olivier Giroud from inside the penalty box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Arsenal 3-1 Tottenham.The assist for the goal came from Santi Cazorla.|
|44||Aaron Lennon concedes a free kick for a foul on Thomas Vermaelen. Aaron Lennon receives a caution for unsporting behaviour. Theo Walcott takes the direct free kick.|
|41||Lukas Podolski grabs a goal from inside the box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Arsenal 2-1 Tottenham.|
|39||Olivier Giroud takes a shot. Hugo Lloris makes a comfortable save.|
|37||Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Jack Wilshere by Raniere Sandro. Mikel Arteta takes the free kick.|
|35||Bacary Sagna fouled by Aaron Lennon, the ref awards a free kick. Jack Wilshere delivers the ball from the free kick left-footed from right channel, clearance made by Jan Vertonghen. Lukas Podolski concedes a free kick for a foul on Gareth Bale.|
|33||Gareth Bale takes a inswinging corner to the near post, clearance made by Olivier Giroud.|
|32||Bacary Sagna gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Raniere Sandro. Tom Huddlestone crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from left wing.|
|31||Effort on goal by Santi Cazorla from outside the penalty box goes harmlessly over the bar.|
|29||Foul by Kyle Naughton on Theo Walcott, free kick awarded. Jack Wilshere crosses the ball, Olivier Giroud takes a shot. Hugo Lloris makes a brilliant save.|
|28||Jermain Defoe is ruled offside. Free kick taken by Laurent Koscielny.|
|27||Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Jan Vertonghen by Jack Wilshere. Free kick taken by Jan Vertonghen.|
|26||Mikel Arteta gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Gareth Bale. Free kick taken by Jan Vertonghen.|
|23||Per Mertesacker scores a headed goal from inside the penalty area. Arsenal 1-1 Tottenham.Assist by Theo Walcott.|
|22||Thomas Vermaelen takes a shot. William Gallas gets a block in.|
|21||Theo Walcott takes the outswinging corner, clearance made by Tom Huddlestone.|
|20||Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Aaron Lennon by Thomas Vermaelen. Direct free kick taken by Hugo Lloris.|
|19||Unfair challenge on Laurent Koscielny by Jermain Defoe results in a free kick. Mikel Arteta takes the direct free kick.|
|16||Free kick awarded for a foul by Emmanuel Adebayor on Santi Cazorla. The referee shows Emmanuel Adebayor a red card for serious foul play. Free kick taken by Mikel Arteta.|
|13||Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Thomas Vermaelen by Emmanuel Adebayor. Laurent Koscielny restarts play with the free kick.|
|12||Effort from deep inside the area by Aaron Lennon misses to the left of the target.|
|11||Jack Wilshere challenges Emmanuel Adebayor unfairly and gives away a free kick. Kyle Walker restarts play with the free kick.|
|9||Jermain Defoe takes a shot. Wojciech Szczesny makes a save. Emmanuel Adebayor finds the net with a goal from close range low into the middle of the goal. Arsenal 0-1 Tottenham.The assist for the goal came from Jermain Defoe.|
|7||Foul by Thomas Vermaelen on Aaron Lennon, free kick awarded. Gareth Bale crosses the ball in from the free kick, Laurent Koscielny makes a clearance. Tom Huddlestone takes a shot. Blocked by Laurent Koscielny.|
|5||The offside flag is raised against Theo Walcott. Jan Vertonghen restarts play with the free kick.|
|3||Olivier Giroud fouled by Raniere Sandro, the ref awards a free kick. Mikel Arteta crosses the ball from the free kick right-footed from left channel, William Gallas manages to make a clearance.|
|3||Free kick awarded for a foul by Raniere Sandro on Jack Wilshere. Free kick taken by Mikel Arteta.|