Saturday, April 20

Arsenal end winless run against Chelsea

For their first league win in almost two months, Arsenal defeated London rivals Chelsea 3-1. Goals from Alexandre Lacazette, Granit Xhaka, and Bukayo Saka raised the pressure on coach Mikel Arteta. Arsenal had failed to win any of their previous seven league games.

In the 35th minute, Kieran Tierney was adjudged to have been clipped by Reece James. Lacazette sent Chelsea goalkeeper Edouard Mendy the wrong way from the spot and scored with a cool head. Arsenal, missing some first-choice starters, took the lead. Xhaka lifted an irresistible free-kick over the wall and beyond Mendy’s dive nine minutes later.

Frank Lampard, a clearly disappointed Chelsea coach, attempted to turn the tide at half-time. He replaced out-of-form German striker Timo Werner with winger Callum Hudson-Odoi and Jorginho with Mateo Kovacic. For much of the second half, however, Chelsea was only slightly more dangerous.

Arsenal secured the victory in the 56th minute when Saka floated what looked like a cross over Mendy. With five minutes to go, Chelsea stole a consolation goal when Tammy Abraham converted a cross by Hudson-Odoi. Jorginho could have set up a tense finale but his poorly taken penalty was saved by Bernd Leno.

But Arsenal looked hungry for a win right from the kickoff and understudies Emile Smith Rowe and Gabriel Martinelli, back from injury, threatened Chelsea with their pace. Arsenal had lost five consecutive league games and the win lifted them to 14th place in the table. Chelsea are sixth after their third consecutive away defeat.

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