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31 December 2011
• Emirates Stadium, London
Referee: M. Atkinson
• Attendance: 60067
R. van Persie 60'
Queens Park Rangers
FULL TIME! Arsenal emerge 1-0 winners after a strong performance in which they had several opportunities to seal the match, yet ended up relying on Van Persie to get the win. The Premier League top scorer finishes with 35 Premier League goals in the calendar year, overtaking Thierry Henry's Arsenal record of 34, but finishing one short of Alan Shearer's 36 in 1995.
90' + 3'
The ball breaks to Van Persie on the right edge of the QPR box, but Gervinho is robbed when he receives his pass from the Dutchman.
90' + 1'
Djourou puts Gervinho through down the right wing. Gervinho picks out Rosicky but his shot is blocked for a corner.
Van Persie gets a half chance to equal the record on the left of the QPR box but the ball runs away from him.
Ramsey cuts inside from the left and shoots, but Cerny dives to his right to save.
Arsenal break but Tomas Rosicky delays too long before playing the ball into Van Persie who is offside.
Alejandro Faurlin wins a free kick 40 yards out from Song which Taarabt clips in. The move ends when Danny Gabbidon blasts the ball well over.
Gervinho wins the ball but his centre into Van Persie is blocked by the outstretched Joey Barton.
Van Persie wins a free kick at the left edge of the box, which Arteta slams into the wall.
Gervinho gets on the end of Van Persie's low cross but puts his effort wide of the near post.
Gervinho nearly scores straight after coming on after dancing his way in from the right edge of the box.
Aaron Ramsey shoots over the bar following an Arsenal break down the right hand side, when there appeared to be other options.
Adel Taarabt does down in the penalty area but Koscielny appeared to win the ball.
QPR win two free kicks in quick succession near the right corner flag, but each is dealt with effectively. QPR are recovering after the period of heavy pressure either side of the goal.
Taarabt forces a save from Szczesny who dives to his left to save his shot, which bounces awkwardly in front of him.
Song breaks forward down the right and into the box, passing the ball back across goal to Arshavin whose shot is blocked.
Assist Andrey Arshavin
Goal Robin van Persie
Robin Van Persie puts the home team in the lead after receiving Arshavin's through ball on the left edge of the box and sliding the ball to Cerny's right. QPR were punished for giving the ball away near the edge of their box.
Walcott is put through clear of the defence by Aaron Ramsey after a well-timed run on the counter, but he drags his shot wide to the right of the diving Cerny.
Yellow Card Luke Young
Koscielny nearly diverts the ball into his own net after intercepting a cross from the left wing. Szczesny does well to avert disaster.
QPR's Faurlin plays in right back Luke Young with a neat through ball, but the offside Wright-Phillips takes it and is called offside.
Arshavin runs evades his markers to set up Ramsey for a shot which is blocked. The ball rebounds to Arteta but his effort from the right edge of the box flashes wide of keeper Cerny's left.
Jamie Mackie is put through on goal by Wright-Phillips but the forward is rightly ruled offside.
Arsenal get the second half underway!
HALF TIME! The first half draws to a close at 0-0. Arsenal put the QPR defence under sustained pressure towards the end of the half but the away team's defence has held firm.
45' + 2'
Van Persie loses his footing as he attempts to chest down a long ball from Arteta which finds him in the QPR box.
Joey Barton heads a sweet strike from Aaron Ramsey off the line from next to the right hand post.
Arsenal appeal for a penalty after a cross from the left wing following a corner appears to hit the arm of a defender.
Yellow Card Johan Djourou
Johan Djourou receives a yellow card for a foul on Joey Barton.
Yellow Card Thomas Vermaelen
QPR break down the right hand side through Wright-Phillips, who is fouled but he stays on his feet to receive the advantage. Vermaelen receives a yellow card although it was Koscielny who committed the foul!
Traore neatly intercepts a pass through to Walcott for another Arsenal corner, but the home side do not take advantage.
Theo Walcott gets on the end of a long ball from Koscielny and wins a corner. Koscielny shoots following the corner but his shot is blocked by QPR's Luke Young, leading the home fans to shout for a penalty.
Vermaelen's ball over the top creates a great chance for Van Persie whose right foot shot flies over the bar.
Yellow Card Joey Barton
Joey Barton gets the first caution of the match for a sliding challenge on the impressive Arteta.
Johan Djourou surprises the QPR defence with a mazing run from the right along the edge of the box, and finds Robin van Persie who powers through the defence but blazes over his shot taken from the left of the box.
Robin Van Persie does well to get his head on the end of a deep cross from the left hand side, but as much as he tried he could not direct on target his header across goal.
Robin Van Persie twists and turns on the right edge of the penalty box to work a shooting opportunity, but his awkward left foot shot is saved by QPR keeper Cerny.
Arsenal corner drilled in by van Persie, but it results in a QPR goal kick.
Taarabt puts Wright-Phillips through down the left hand side of the Arsenal box, but Szczesny comes off his line to block the shot.
Jay Bothroyd cuts inside on his left foot to shoot, but Szczesny dives to his left to save.
Each side has so far looked to build attacks through the middle of the pitch, with Arsenal's Arteta seeing much of the ball.
Mikel Arteta frees Theo Walcott down the right hand side with a long ball, but Walcott's cross is overhit.
QPR get the match underway!
Arsenal start with Andrei Arshavin in attack, leaving Gervinho and Yossi Benayoun on the bench.
QPR start playmaker Adel Taarabt for the second consecutive game, while top scorer Heidar Helguson is left on the bench as Jamie Mackie and Jay Bothroyd start.
Arsenal's Robin van Persie needs two goals to equal the Premier League record for most goals scored in a calendar year, currently held by Alan Shearer’s with 36 scored in 1995.
QPR: Cerny, Young, Gabbidon, Connolly, Traore, Taarabt, Barton, Faurlin, Wright-Phillips, Mackie, Bothroyd. Substitutes: Murphy, Orr, Hill, Smith, Derry, Campbell, Helguson
Arsenal: Szczesny, Djourou, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Vermaelen, Arteta, Song, Ramsey, Walcott, van Persie, Arshavin. Substitutes: Almunia, Rosicky, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Benayoun, Coquelin, Gervinho, Chamakh
Hello and welcome to Goal.com's live commentary of Arsenal v QPR. Arsenal will be looking to finish the year with a win at home after recording a draw at home to Wolves, while QPR start with an attacking line up featuring playmaker Adel Taarabt for only his second start since October.
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