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Premier League

  • October 6, 2013
  • • 16:00
  • • The Hawthorns, West Bromwich
  • Referee: L. Mason
  • • Attendance: 24839
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Live Commentary

  • That's it from me, it's been a pleasure.
  • An excellent, hard fought contest that sees both teams deservedly split the points. Arsenal's away win streak ends, but the draw is still enough to see them go back to the top of the table, level on points and goal difference with Liverpool, but ahead on goals scored. West Brom meanwhile show that their victory over Manchester United was no fluke, giving the Gunners a run for their money all the way to the final whistle.
  • 90' + 5'
    Rosicky goes streaming forward on one last Arsenal attack, but Bendtner loses the ball, and Lee Mason immediately blows the final whistle!
  • 90' + 4'
    Koscielny a tad lucky there perhaps, barging into the back of Long under the pretense of challenging for a high ball, which got nowhere near the pair. Appeals for a penalty, but again, no dice.
  • 90' + 3'
    Ozil loses the ball under pressure from Jones. Haven't seen much of the German international today, a statement that rings true for most of Arsenal's attacking players.
  • 90' + 1'
    Into the first of FOUR added minutes.
  • 90'
    A left back for a winger, a clear signal of intent from Clarke, despite Amalfitano's niggle. West Brom happy with the point it seems, and a hard earned one it will be, IF they hold on!
  • 89'
    Substitution Morgan Amalfitano Chris Brunt
  • 88'
    Amalfitano clearly struggling, clutching his glute and grimacing in some pain. Clarke reacts quickly by introducing veteran Baggie Brunt in his stead.
  • 87'
    The match just slowing down a tad in the last few minutes, but Flamini does have a decent shooting opportunity from 18 yards, in the end, seeing it deflected harmlessly into the path of Myhill.
  • 85'
    Substitution Olivier Giroud Nicklas Bendtner
  • 85'
    Off goes Giroud, relatively ineffective today, and on comes the great Dane, looking noticeably slimmer since his tubby visage at the start of the season!
  • 83'
    Cometh the hour, cometh the man...Nicklas Bendtner the golden samurai is stripping down on the sidelines...
  • 82'
    Arsenal continue to probe. Wilshere's cross to Giroud is headed away, Arteta resets and plays into Giroud again, who is brought down, legally, by Mulumbu on the edge of the box!
  • 81'
    Jenkinson for Arsenal, with a good purposeful run down the right, but his cross is met by the planted Olsson on the near post.
  • 80'
    Good news for you Gunners fans though, Tottenham have just gone 3-0 down to West Ham at White Hart Lane!
  • 79'
    Substitution Stéphane Sessegnon James Morrison
  • 79'
    What a great finish to this game, both sides going for broke. You'll not find me calling a winner at this tenuous stage!
  • 78'
    Hang on, that was a RISKY challenge from Mulumbu, going in from behind on Wilshere, who was primed to shoot from just inside the box! His gamble paid off though, as he just got to the ball first, and it's deemed legal by Lee Mason!
  • 77'
    EXCELLENT goalkeeping from Myhill! Wilshere has put Giroud through, and the French striker tries to round the Baggies keeper, but he is having none of it, and pushes the ball away at the last!
  • 76'
    Credit to West Brom for still pushing forward, and not letting their heads drop after conceding. The hosts still look capable of another.
  • 74'
    Long with an incisive ball to pick out Amalfitano, who has a gap to aim at on the near post, but Koscielny just does enough to harry him off his shot!
  • 73'
    JONES! A rasping drive from the right back, who pushed forward well, but Szczesny is on it, and pushes wide smartly!
  • 72'
    More pressure from Arsenal, this time coming down the left hand side. Gibbs' cross narrowly misses Giroud and West Brom breathe again!
  • 70'
    Jenkinson left worse for wear after a towering Yacob challenge. A bit of treatment required for the right back.
  • 69'
    Substitution Nicolas Anelka Shane Long
  • 69'
    Anelka is replaced by Long. A terrible game from the forward, if I'm honest, anonymous for the most part but still found time to miss a golden chance.
  • 69'
    All of a sudden, the Arsenal pressure breaks down, and Sessegnon is released through the middle! Anelka is in acres of space on the left, and Sessegnon tries to slip him in, but the heel of Koscielny intercepts that dangerous pass!
  • 67'
    Arsenal coming on strong again, and West Brom are forced into an increasingly tenuous defensive stance at the back!
  • 65'
    Game well and truly on folks! That deflection upon reflection played a significant part in Wilshere's strike beating Myhill, but those are the breaks of the game, and maybe just the stroke of luck Wenger and his side needed.
  • 63'
    Assist Tomas Rosicky
  • 63'
    Goal Jack Wilshere
    Out of nowhere, a seemingly stagnated Arsenal attack is converted into a goal! Giroud was challenged on the edge of the area, and Rosicky bobbles the ball up to Wilshere, who catches it clean on the volley, hammering it into the bottom corner! Hint of a deflection, but try to get anyone in an Arsenal shirt to care.
  • 63'
    TOO LATE! WILSHERE DRAWS ARSENAL LEVEL!
  • 63'
    You get the feeling that this game is on the verge of another breakthrough. Arsenal are getting the ball into some good positions, and West Brom may just want that second goal to cushion their lead.
  • 61'
    Rosicky gets his first touch after a strong Arsenal spell in the West Brom penalty area, but hacks his volley horribly into orbit. Earlier, a Gibbs cross was taken inadvertently on the elbow by Jones, a hard call for the referee to make, and one that he avoids by waving play on.
  • 59'
    Substitution Aaron Ramsey Tomas Rosicky
  • 59'
    Rosicky on, Ramsey off. Not a good game from the Welshman who looked to be struggling with a knee problem. Wenger opts for the safe option in Rosicky, over gambling on Gnabry or Miyaichi.
  • 57'
    Rosicky getting stripped and ready as Flamini sees a good shot blocked by Amalfitano.
  • 56'
    Dangerous free kick for West Brom after Gibbs fouled Sessegnon. Amalfitano whips it into the mixer, but Mertesacker gets his head to it first. The Gunners try to counter through Giroud, but Myhill is on it.
  • 54'
    Yellow Card Jonas Olsson
  • 54'
    Olsson clambers all over Giroud to win a header, and ends up fouling the striker quite dangerously. Yellow card for the defender.
  • 53'
    NEARLY A SECOND for West Brom, as Amalfitano gets in down the left, and tries to beat Szczesny with a curler towards the far bottom corner, but just misses! Close shave, but Jenkinson is getting grilled here.
  • 51'
    Sessegnon has picked up where he left off, troubling Jenkinson again, and winning a corner off the right back. The ball comes in from Amalfitano, but Szczesny wins the challenge against Olsson and pushes clear.
  • 50'
    Ramsey drills a threatening cross in that is just ahead of a wall of yellow shirts. An entertaining start to the half!
  • 48'
    TWO CHANCES BACK TO BACK! Sessegnon gets past Jenkinson on the flank, and squares the ball to Anelka, right on the six yard line, but the striker fluffs his lines horribly! Arsenal go back up the pitch, Giroud holds up well and slips in Wilshere, who is barged off his shot by Olsson! Some arguments for a penalty there.
  • 47'
    There is a complete lack of penetration from this Arsenal side out wide and it's no surprise why. Ramsey and Wilshere are not wingers. A look to the bench may hold the answer though. Rosicky, as tidy as he was against Napoli, may be more of the same, but wild card wingers Gnabry and Miyaichi, can the youngsters change the tide?
  • 46'
    Here we go again!
  • We've got a game folks! Arsenal huffed and puffed, but in the end failed to spark into life. West Brom made the most of a strong ending to the half, as Yacob headed in the opener from Amalfitano's perfect cross. The Gunners have it all to do in the second half, but this Arsenal team have shown increasing resilience of late and are not to be taken lightly. For Clarke and West Brom, a perfect end to the half. Will they keep up the pressure after the break or will they set up shop? Join me for the restart in a bit.
  • 45' + 4'
    And that's it for the half!
  • 45' + 3'
    Olsson shanks a clearance badly, and Ramsey is nearly on it in a flash to poke home! But the defender recovers just enough to marshal the Welshman away from goal.
  • 45' + 2'
    Yellow Card Jack Wilshere
  • 45' + 2'
    Smiles all around at the Hawthorns, but nothing of the sort on the Arsenal bench.
  • 45' + 1'
    Frustration getting the better of Wilshere, who loses the ball on the edge of the area and goes into Yacob from behind. Arsenal's second yellow of the day.
  • 45'
    Three added minutes to go, three minutes for Arsenal to survive. Who would have thought it?
  • 44'
    West Brom are piling on the pressure! All of a sudden Arsenal's left flank looks ripe for the taking as Jones hurtles forward, with only a last ditch Wilshere tackle getting the ball out of harm's way!
  • 42'
    Assist Morgan Amalfitano
  • 42'
    Goal Claudio Yacob
    Arsenal's soft centre makes an appearance! It was a simple goal in the end from the hosts, Amalfitano's cross coming in to the near post, where Yacob leaves Jenkinson and Arteta for dead to bounce a header in off the ground!
  • 42'
    YACOB BREAKS THE DEADLOCK!
  • 41'
    Sessegnon leaves Gibbs for dead and has time to pick out a cross that Koscielny just manages to hack away!
  • 41'
    West Brom free kick, Amalfitano whips it in, and Szczesny gets to the ball, but not entirely convincingly, and palms it clear. He swore a foul, the Polish keeper.
  • 40'
    Gibbs preventing from getting a cross in on the overlap from a heroic challenge by Jones. Ozil's resulting corner is cleared to the edge of the box, where Ramsey strikes, but Myhill is spared the save by a inadvertent block from Giroud!
  • 40'
    Gibbs preventing from getting a cross in on the overlap from a heroic challenge by Jones. Ozil's resulting corner is cleared to the edge of the box, where Ramsey strikes, but Myhill is spared the save by a inadvertent block from Giroud!
  • 38'
    This is more like it from the Baggies! The direct running of Sessegnon, as ever, causes a few problems for that Arsenal left side, and GIbbs narrowly manages to clear for a corner. From the delivery, Mertesacker gets a strong head onto the ball.
  • 38'
    With Giroud and Olsson tussling for the ball, Wilshere spots an opportunity and runs in to nick the ball, but is instead clattered by the defender. No foul, and another moment of discomfort for the midfielder.
  • 36'
    Sessegnon loses out to a firm Flamini tackle right on the top of the D. Arsenal break again, Ramsey spreads wide to Giroud, who shifts onto his left foot, but cannot come up with a powerful enough shot to trouble Myhill.
  • 34'
    PENALTY!? Sessegnon goes hurtling past Gibbs and immediately tumbles down inside the box. Lee Mason had an excellent view of that though, and waves play on, to the fury of the home fans.
  • 34'
    Wilshere back on, still rubbing his eye in some discomfort.
  • 33'
    Again Arsenal probe, but after some fanciful footwork from Ozil and some neat touches from Ramsey and Gibbs, the West Brom backline win the ball.
  • 31'
    Wilshere has stayed down, in fact, and has gestured to the bench for some treatment. Nothing muscular folks, it looks like he just got a solid but unintentional poke in the eye from Yacob. Painful one for sure!
  • 30'
    Wilshere runs right into Sessegnon on the edge of the box and goes down in a heap. West Brom go forward, and Wilshere is getting up very gingerly.
  • 28'
    Not quite a false alarm maybe? Rosicky is spotted warming up on the touchline, signalling a potential early departure for Ramsey. You can't really blame Wenger for wanting to play him every game, but perhaps a little more caution with his midfield star may be needed.
  • 26'
    Another slick Arsenal move at the top of the box sees Wilshere take aim, and skids it just wide of Myhill's right hand side!
  • 25'
    False alarm it seems, as the Welshman is back in action. But lest we forget, he needed a spell of treatment midweek against Napoli as well. Ramsey has played almost every minute for Arsenal this season, so are these early signs of burnout?
  • 23'
    Surprise, surprise, Flamini has been booked for taking down Anelka in the middle. Less surprising and more worrying for Wenger is the sight of Ramsey down on the deck clutching his knee...
  • 23'
    Giroud's openings are slowly and slowly getting more obvious. Another through ball, another run, but McAuley just gets his boot in.
  • 22'
    Yellow Card Mathieu Flamini
  • 22'
    The game starting to pick up pace now as both sides go back and fourth. West Brom see a good cross blocked, and Arsenal break, but Ozil's in swinging cross just fails to be met with enough conviction by Giroud.
  • 20'
    Arsenal on a stunning run of form away from home, winning a dozen straight games outside the Emirates. The last time they notched up such a streak, they channeled it into a Premier League title. Eat your heart out Gunners.
  • 18'
    A stunning pass from Ozil goes diagonally across the top of the box and picks the overlapping Gibbs out perfectly, but the left back wastes that glorious set up with a wild shot into orbit.
  • 17'
    Another probing period for Arsenal nearly bears fruit when Ozil and Ramsey combine, but the Welshman's slipped ball is just behind the streaking Flamini, and Olsson intercepts.
  • 15'
    West Brom finally sustain possession for longer than five seconds in the Arsenal half, and make some good of it! Berahino gets the step on Jenkinson, and blasts an effort in on goal that nicks wickedly off Flamini, forcing Szczesny to change direction well to make the save!
  • 13'
    It's Ramsey, brimming with confidence, who takes the set piece, but its a terrible hit, miles over the top.
  • 12'
    Most definitely Arsenal have been the quicker side to settle into their rhythm. Giroud, after a smart turn, is brought down by Yacob, a decent 25 yards from goal. Freekick to come.
  • 10'
    Mulumbu clatters Wilshere in the centre circle. Just a warning from Lee Mason at this early stage for the Congolese, who has racked up three cautions already this season. Occupational hazard.
  • 9'
    Arsenal probe and pick at West Brom, but the Baggies are standing firm, with all 11 men well behind the halfway line. The move breaks down when an ambitious Giroud backheel fools his teammates and his own self.
  • 7'
    Nearly a route through the centre for Jones, who goes all the way from right back to the edge of the penalty area, and is half a yard from intercepting Szczesny's clearance!
  • 6'
    Straight from a failed West Brom corner, Arsenal break! Ozil effortlessly slips in Giroud, marginally onside, but the Frenchman, with only Wilshere to pick out in the box, ends up skying it.
  • 5'
    Mulumbu not having the best of times to start here, he and Olsson get in each others way, almost allowing Ozil to break through in the confusion!
  • 3'
    Arsenal have held the ball since Mulumbu's early fail, but have not made any advances into the opposition half. A nice atmosphere ringing around The Hawthorns as well.
  • 1'
    West Brom kick us off and immediately waste the ball with a hopeful hack by Mulumbu to catch Szczesny off his line. No dice.
  • Arsene Wenger and Steve Clarke shake hands, the teams are in place, and our referee Lee Mason is ready to get us started!
  • West Brom meanwhile have finally found a decent vein of form, with two league wins in their last two games. One of those games, a 3-0 topping of Sunderland was the final nail in Paolo Di Canio's coffin, and the other, a 2-1 switch at Old Trafford, may possibly, potentially, maybe, end up being the first nail in David Moyes'. The Baggies are buzzing, no doubt!
  • Arsenal of course have been the most in form team in the country, winning ten games on the trot in all competitions, and shhhh...looking like they have a legit title challenge in store! One of those wins came against the Baggies last month in the Capital One Cup, a marathon 4-3 penalty shootout triumph after a trudging 1-1 draw during normal time.
  • Arsene Wenger also makes two changes to his side that handily defeated Napoli midweek, with Jenkinson and Wilshere replacing Sagna and Rosicky. Wilshere will play in his newfound home out wide, of course, and it looks like duties on the opposite flank will be split between Ozil and Ramsey, two of Arsenal's stars of the season.
  • Anichebe and Sinclair out, Berahino and Anelka in - the two changes for the hosts. The veteran French striker lines up against the club where he made his name, but only time will tell if Anichebe's abscence will be felt. Hardly the most technical player, but the ex-Everton man has been key at times for the Baggies this season with his brand of physicality and tenacity. A battering ram, if you will. Anelka is a different player at this stage of his career, rather dropping deep than running in behind.
  • ARSENAL: Szczesny; Jenkinson, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Gibbs; Arteta, Flamini, Ramsey, Wilshere, Ozil; Giroud. SUBS: Fabianski, Monreal, Vermaelen, Rosicky, Gnabry, Miyaichi, Bendtner.
  • WEST BROM: Myhill; Jones, McAuley, Olsson, Ridgewell; Yacob, Mulumbu, Amalfitano, Sessegnon; Berahino, Anelka. SUBS: Daniels, Popov, Morrison, Brunt, Lugano, Long, Rosenberg.
  • First, our teams.
  • The Hawthorns is the venue, West Bromwich Albion vs Arsenal is the show. Greetings from me, Keeghann Sinanan, your designated scribe for another round of EPL action!