Arsenal and Spurs share the points in north London derby
PUBLISHED: 19:29 27 September 2014 | UPDATED: 21:05 27 September 2014
PA Wire/Press Association Images
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain’s 74th-minute strike ensured that the spoils were shared as Arsenal came from behind to draw 1-1 in a lively north London derby at Emirates Stadium.
Tottenham were indebted to goalkeeper Hugo Lloris, who kept the scoresheet blank before Nacer Chadli struck to put them ahead early in the second half.
But Oxlade-Chamberlain grabbed the equaliser to maintain the Gunners’ unbeaten Premier League record – and deny Spurs what would have been only their second victory at the Emirates.
Arsenal dominated possession in the first half and created what chances there were without ever giving Lloris too much cause for panic.
Aaron Ramsey was first to test the Tottenham keeper with a low drive, while Danny Welbeck left Jan Vertonghen for dead with a neat swivel and headed for goal, but Younes Kaboul got back and did enough to force the shot behind.
Welbeck was involved in most of the Gunners’ most promising moves, retrieving Oxlade-Chamberlain’s cross to fire another attempt at Lloris and then teeing up Ramsey’s pass for Jack Wilshere, whose half-volley was clasped by the goalkeeper.
Ramsey’s close control set up an opportunity for Oxlade-Chamberlain, whose attempt was pushed clear by the diving Lloris, while Tottenham threatened only occasionally on the counter-attack.
However, they enjoyed a decent spell towards the end of the first period and Emmanuel Adebayor should have done better when a lay-off from Erik Lamela handed him a sight of goal.
A shot on the turn by the ex-Gunners striker finally brought Wojciech Szczesny into action in added time – but it was still hard to envisage the first goal going in the visitors’ favour.
That looked unlikely to change at the start of the second period when Arsenal put together a slick passing sequence and Mesut Ozil’s effort was parried by Lloris as the Spurs defence opened up.
Yet it was Tottenham who took the lead on 56 minutes when Christian Eriksen caught Mathieu Flamini in possession and found Lamela, who slid the ball through for Chadli to slot past Szczesny.
The home side thought they might have equalised almost immediately when Per Mertesacker rose to head goalwards from a corner, only for Lloris to stop the ball on the line.
And they almost levelled through an unlikely source when Ozil’s cross deflected out to Calum Chambers, whose swerving volley whistled just over the crossbar.
But honours were even with 16 minutes left when Lamela’s miscue fell to Alexis Sanchez and he set up fellow substitute Santi Cazorla for a cross that found its way beyond Welbeck’s air-kick for Oxlade-Chamberlain to slam into the net.
The Gunners looked the more likely to carve out a winner in the closing stages but, despite five minutes of added time, Tottenham’s defence held firm to secure a point.
Arsenal: Szczesny; Chambers, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs; Arteta (Flamini 28); Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ramsey (Cazorla 45), Wilshere (Sanchez 63), Ozil; Welbeck.
Tottenham: Lloris; Naughton, Kaboul, Vertonghen, Rose (Dier 83); Capoue, Mason; Lamela, Chadli (Bentaleb 80), Eriksen (Lennon 62); Adebayor.