Arsenal and Spurs draw the Derby
Written By: Robert Halter
Members of the Royal Artillery met their Arsenal with a commemorative reef laid at Emirates stadium for remembrance Sunday ahead of the North London derby, early November. On six minutes, Olivier Giroud found space for Joel Campbell, who lost control of the ball on the right side of the area. In the tenth minute, Petr Cech was at full stretch to clutch hold of a low drive from Danny Rose, after a ball across from Erik Lamela, as Tottenham Hotspur pressed up field. After Arsenal captain, Per Mertesacker, clipped the heels of Spurs sharp shooter, Harry Kane, a free kick was floated in by Christian Eriksen, and an unmarked Eric Dier, put his header wide of the target in a goal scoring position, with twenty four minutes played. But it was the Lilywhites that struck the first blow on thirty two minutes, as from inside his own half, Rose produced a peach of a pass to Kane, who kept his nerve to lift the ball over a stranded Cech, with a measured finish, that left Laurent Koscielny unable to protect the Gunners keeper, as he was left waiting in the wings. On thirty nine minutes, the offside flag was raised after Alexis Sanchez snatched at a shot from close range, from a right wing cross by Joel Campbell. With a minute of normal time remaining in the first half, Kane troubled Cech with a low footed strike from the right side of the box, which Cech had to parry away, following an incisive pass from Eriksen. After the break, Mathieu Flamini replaced an out of sought Santi Cazorla. On forty seven minutes, Hugo Lloris was tested for the first time, as Campbell’s rasping effort had to be plucked away from the French Spurs shot stopper’s far post, after Rose could not cut out the angle, as Campbell’s strike followed from a looping ball over by Mesut Ozil. Then after Eriksen exchanged a net one two with Kane, his strike deflected off Flamini and over the top of the left frame of the goal, with fifty two minutes played. But the top of the crossbar saved Spurs, as Giroud rammed a header against the upright from an Ozil free kick, after Mousa Dembele had appended Campbell, three minutes later. Another free kick from Ozil saw a header by Koscielny, drift wide of the left post, following a foul by Eriksen on Sanchez, in the fifty ninth minute. On the hour mark, Giroud missed a close range header, by twisting the ball inches past the left post with his forehead, after a well placed corner by Ozil. But the Lilywhites weathered the storm, and went close as Cech pulled off a right sided save to keep out Eriksen’s strike from a right wing cross by Kyle Walker, before Dele Alli blazed over, in the sixty fourth minute and then within a minute, a crucial deflection from Koscielny diverted Kane’s effort wide of the target, after a through ball from Eriksen had put the Spurs striker clear on goal. On seventy minutes, Cech made another important stop with a strong double handed block to push away a forceful close range header by Toby Alderweireld, from a well placed corner by Lamela. Three minutes later, Kane showed his intent again, by striking the ball through the defensive gap protected by Koscielny, but the ball went past Cech’s left post, before the flag was raised. The Gunners made another change with Kieran Gibbs on for Campbell, before Spurs replaced Lamela with Heung-Min Son. Finally, Arsenal got back on level terms as Ozil’s long range pass from the right side picked out Gibbs on the left part of the area, and Lloris could only push Gibbs near post strike into the net, in the seventy seventh minute. Arsenal then brought on Mikel Arteta for Mathieu Debuchy and then pressed for a winner, first Sanchez’s headed pass found Mertesacker, whose scissors kick was put behind by Lloris and from an Ozil corner, the ball cannoned off Rose, before Giroud struck the ball over in the eightieth minute. The Lilywhites then took off Alli for Ryan Mason. Another header by Giroud required Lloris to spring to his right to make a save from Ozil’s cross in the eighty fourth minute. In stoppage time Josh Onomah replaced Eriksen to see out the 1-1 draw.