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13 May 2012
• The Hawthorns, West Bromwich
Referee: M. Jones
• Attendance: 26358
West Bromwich Albion
S. Long 12'
G. Dorrans 15'
Y. Benayoun 4'
André Santos 30'
L. Koscielny 55'
90' + 6'
Well, well, well, unbelievable drama in the Premier League this afternoon as the season ends in incredible style. That's all from me but keep it with Goal.com for all today's match reports, ratings and all the fallout from all the games.
90' + 5'
FULL-TIME! That's it it's all over. West Brom 2-3 Arsenal! The Gunners finish third, Spurs are fourth and Manchester City are champions and Bolton are relegated!! Goodness me. What an afternoon.
90' + 4'
By the way, in case you're interested two late goals at the Etihad Stadium have made it Manchester City 3-2 QPR. Wow.
90' + 3'
ODENWINGIE SCORES! But wait, wait...it's offside! Massive sighs of relief for Arsenal, the flag is up!
90' + 1'
VAN PERSIE MUST SCORE!! But he doesn't! The Dutchman is in the box, in acres of space, with just Fulop to beat, but he smashes it wide!
WOAH! Into FIVE minutes of added time at the Hawthorns! Five minutes!!!
West Brom have a free-kick just outside the box, and the Arsenal fans are nervous now! However, it comes to nothing, the kick is deflected and Szczesny plucks is calmly out of the air. Albion running out of time now...
Again it's Fortune, he's causing all sorts of problems for Arsenal. He's denied by Koscielny though who makes a brave block. Super defending (for once!).
West Brom piling pressure on Jenkinson down the left. He looks the weak link in the Arsenal defence. Again Fortune goes past him but he can't find the cross to match and the visitors escape. Could be a long last five minutes for the full-back though.
Nearly a great chance for West Brom. Scharner dinks a little ball into Odemwingie, who has got free of the Arsenal defence but there is just a little too much on it and its runs harmlessly out of play.
So into the last 10 minutes at the Hawthorns and Arsenal still looking good for third spot. A West Brom goal could change of all that, however, but so far other than that Andrews effort, Szczesny has had very little to do.
Changes all around Paul Scharner is on for Graham Dorrans whilst Aaron Ramsey takes over from Andre Santos.
Both sides struggling to create chances at the moment, as the games settles into something of a lull. Arsenal look as though they might be about to make another change, however, Ramsey is getting prepped on the touchline.
More goals at Everton but it's still good news for Arsenal. The Toffees now lead Newcastle 3-1, so Alan Pardew's men look set to finish fifth.
Change for West Brom and it's an attacking one. Off goes Simon Cox and on comes Peter Odemwingie.
Van Persie and Walcott combine well and the Gunners continue to attack. The Englishman's cross is deflected wide however, and Song's shot is deflected wide for a corner that comes to nothing.
Great chance for West Brom! And a real warning to Arsenal that this game is not over yet. The hosts ping it around nicely before finding Andrews who turns and hits a fizzing effort that Szczesny palms clear! Great effort.
Here comes the change I was telling you about. Off goes Gervinho and on comes Gibbs. Elsewhere I'd better tell you that Manchester City now trail QPR 2-1 - the Hoops have had a man sent off too. Seriously, I'm not making this up.
Ben Foster is the stands watching on. I wonder what he's thinking after watching those two howlers from Fulop?
Movement on the Arsenal bench and it looks as though Kieran Gibbs is preparing to come on.
Arsenal continue to look a shambles at the back, but a hack clear sparks off a counterattack. Gervinho picks up possession on the left, beats his man...and then passes it straight to an Albion defender. Cue groans from the visiting fans.
Another corner for West Brom, but again it comes to nothing. There has been another goal at White Hart Lane though. Spurs are now 2-0 against Fulham and looking nailed on for all three points. Arsenal cannot afford any mistakes now.
Albion keep the pressure on, however. They win another corner, but it's delayed as the referee has a chat with McAuley and Santos who are indulging in some shirt pulling. Naughty boys.
An hour gone at the Hawthorns and the hosts have a corner. It's hurled into the mix, Olsson gets a great head on it and Van Persie hacks it clear on the line! WHAT. A CHANCE!
So it's all going swimmingly for Arsenal now, although there's drama elsewhere as QPR have levelled it up against Manchester City. What a final day we're having!
To be honest it's another goalkeeping disaster from West Brom and that man Fulop. He attempts to punch clear a Van Persie corner, gets it horribly wrong and allows Koscielny a simple goal. That's two goals Arsenal have to thank him for!
Goal Laurent Koscielny
GOAL!! Unbelievable stuff! ARSENAL ARE AHEAD! They have Koscielny to thank as he puts it away to make it West Brom 2-3 Arsenal! The Gunners are back in third place!
Oh dear Jenkinson! An awful piece of play from the young defender allows Fortune past and he should do better, but shoots rather tamely at Szczesny who spare's his young colleague's blushes.
West Brom are forced into a change after Jenkinson fouls Morrison and leaves him unable to continue. The West Brom man hobbles off and the hosts are temporarily down to 10.
An early corner for the Gunners, it comes to Benayoun at the far post but he's easily muscled out of it by McAuley and West Brom hoof it clear.
An early talking to from the referee for Song who has a little coming together with Long, who nudges him in the back at he walks past. All a bit silly and after a quick nag, we're off again.
Here we go again folks! West Brom get us underway and off we go again at the Hawthorns! One change at the break, Theo Walcott is on for Rosicky. He will be hoping to impress Roy Hodgson no doubt.
It's probably worth saying again that if the scores stay as they are, then Arsenal will finish fourth, and Spurs will pinch third place.
At the bottom of the table, at the moment QPR will be joining Blackburn and Wolves in heading to the Championship. The Hoops are losing at Manchester City whilst Bolton are 2-1 up at Stoke.
So elsewhere in the Premier League it's still Tottenham 1-0 Fulham, Everton 2-0 Newcastle. If you're interested in the small matter of the title then Manchester City are still on course, they lead QPR 1-0, while Manchester United are 1-0 up at Sunderland.
45' + 2'
HALF-TIME! Cracking half at the Hawthorns! Benayoun opening the scoring for the visitors before goals from Long and Dorrans put West Brom ahead. Andre Santos then grabbed an equaliser but Arsenal have it all to do after the break.
45' + 1'
Into TWO minutes of stopage time at the end of the half...
West Brom win a corner, it's hurled in towards the far post, with home fans shouting for handball. Instead the referee awards another corner. Late Albion pressure.
Now Olsson goes in strongly on Van Persie. He probably should have been booked but the referee decides to keep his cards in his pocket. Fear not though Arsenal fans, the Dutchman is fine to continue.
Heading into the final five minutes of the first half and this is looking like a very difficult afternoon for Arsenal. They have looked dangerous going forward, but guess what? Defensively they look very vulnerable, same old story.
Yellow Card Robin van Persie
Huge boos echo around the Hawthorns after Van Persie goes in very, very, very, very late on McAuley. The West Brom man is in agony, the Arsenal striker rather sheepishly gives him a pat as he lies stricken, and then accepts the yellow card the referee thrusts in his direction.
After a tumultuous opening half hour, the game has just calmed down a bit. Have the managers? Not a bit of it! Arsene Wenger and Pat Rice are up and down from their seats every few seconds. In contrast Roy Hodgson is looking relatively untroubled.
So as it stands Arsenal still need a goal. Tottenham's goal at Fulham means they are currently ahead of the Gunners, and explains why Arsene is looking so worried on the touchline. Squeaky bum time. Bigtime.
Arsenal starting to ping the passes around the West Brom half, but then they lose possession and the hosts can counter quickly. Santos then brings down Mulumbu and Hodgson's men have a free-kick and some brief respite.
Whilst all that was happening there was also a goal at Goodison Park. Everton are now 2-0 up against Newcastle, so it looks as if it's a straight fight between Arsenal and Spurs for third spot! What an afternoon this is turning out to be.
Assist Alex Song
Goal Andre Santos
GOAL! BUT NOW ARSENAL ARE LEVEL! Santos is the man! He strike a low, fierce drive from just outside the box and it flies past Fulop. West Brom 2-2 Arsenal! Four goals inside the first 30 minutes! What more do you want people?
Chance for Arsenal, with a free-kick just outside the box in a very tasty position indeed. Up step that man Van Persie...but he hits it straight into the wall! Disappointing!
Another great block by West Brom! This time it's Benayoun yet again. He's found by Jenkinson but McAuley is in the way of his shot and again the Gunners are denied.
Again it's Van Persie, who else? Song is the creator this time but just as the Dutchman looks ready to pull the trigger, the flag is up. He's offside and West Brom can breathe a sigh of relief.
So 20 minutes gone and Arsenal in all sorts of trouble, yet they continue to threaten. This time Rosicky sets up Van Persie who hits a terrific effort but it's brilliantly blocked by Olsson. Superb defending by the hosts.
Benayoun, who bagged the opener remember - doesn't that seem a long time ago now? Anyway, he tries his luck again, on the volley, but he can't find the target and Fulop watches it whizz past into the stands.
More goals from elsewhere to tell you about. Everton have gone in front against Newcastle, this is good news for Arsenal, but they will care more about turning this game around at the moment.
Assist James Morrison
Goal Graham Dorrans
GOAL! IT GETS WORSE FOR ARSENAL AS West Brom take the lead! Dorrans, picks up a pass from Morrison, knocks it past Koscielny before volleying it past Szczesny. Wenger looks furious on the touchline!
Arsene Wenger is having a long chat with the referee's assistant on the touchline. I suspect he thinks the West Brom goal was offside, very few appeals from the Arsenal players but certainly the manager is not a happy man.
Assist James Morrison
Goal Shane Long
GOAL! WEST BROM EQUALISE! What was I saying about looking comfortable? Commentator's curse! Shane Long is the man who levels things up.He takes advantage of some lax defending, to run clear and slot comfortably past Szczesny. Game. On.
Ten minutes have flown by at the Hawthorns and it's looking good so far for the visitors. A goal up and looking pretty comfortable in these early stages, although Martin Fulop will not want to see that goal again. Truly shocking defending.
Corner to Arsenal which Robin van Persie takes, it's headed clear but only as far as the Dutchman. He then a huge cross to the far post, but the referee blows for a foul and West Brom have a free-kick which Fulop can take.
Back come the hosts and Szczesny has to be alert to tip a cross-cum-shot away at his near post! Almost an instant response from the Baggies. Lively stuff here at the Hawthorns.
Goal Yossi Benayoun
GOAL! ARSENAL SCORE!! Benayoun is the man who puts the Gunners ahead! But he has Fulop to thank! The West Brom goalkeeper dithers on the edge of the box, allowing Benayoun to nick the ball away from him and slot into an empty net!
News from elsewhere already and it's bad news for the visitors. Spurs have scored early against Fulham, and to make matters worse it's a former Gunner Emmanuel Adebayor who's got the goal!!
A free-kick to Arsenal is held up as Fulop tries to clear some of the balloons and beach balls that are being thrown onto the pitch. After a quick tidy up, we're back underway.
We are off! Tomas Rosicky and Robin van Persie get us underway at a very sunny Hawthorns and it's all systems go!
So close now! The teams are out on the pitch. West Brom in their traditional stripes, Arsenal in red and white. A smiling Arsene Wenger shakes Roy Hodgson's hand and we'll be ready to go any minute now! Get excited people!
Of course Spurs and Newcastle could still pip Arsenal to third, so we'll make sure we keep you updated with the scores from their games too. Tottenham are taking on Fulham at White Hart Lane, whilst Newcastle are away at Everton.
Arsenal also make three changes for the trip with Andre Santos and Carl Jenkinson coming into the defence in place of Bacary Sagna and Kieran Gibbs. Elsewhere Francis Coquelin starts in place of Aaron Ramsey. Risky? We'll soon find out!
Some interesting team news for both sides then. First up the hosts who make three changes. Out go injured goalkeeper Ben Foster, Keith Andrews and Chris Brunt, who has had his tonsils removed. In come Martin Fulop, James Morrison and Simon Cox.
Szczesny; Jenkinson, Koscielny, Vermaelen, Santos; Rosicky, Song, Coquelin; Benayoun, Gervinho; Van Persie. Subs: Fabianski, Djourou, Gibbs, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Walcott, Ramsey, Chamakh.
West Brom: Fulop; Jones, McAuley, Olsson, Ridgewell; Cox, Morrison, Mulumbu, Dorrans; Fortune, Long. Subs: Daniels, Hurst, Scharner, Odemwingie, Shorey, Dawson, Andrews.
Afternoon all and welcome to Goal.com as we bring you live coverage of West Brom versus Arsenal! Forget about the title race, don't worry about the relegation scrap, it's all about third place at the Hawthorns! Can the Gunners grab it? Or will the Baggies spoil the party and give Roy Hodgson the perfect send off? Find out here as all the action is on its way...
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