Gameweek 21 of the English Premier League kicked off with a battle of giants as Mikel Arteta’s rejuvenated Arsenal were up against in-form Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City.
Both teams came into the fixture smoking having racked up wins in their last five games.
The gunners came out all guns blazing in the first half enough to startle the Cityzens as they had a couple of opportunities early in the game but none got into the back of the net including a penalty call waved aside by referee Stuart Attwell.
They had to wait till the half-hour mark to get the opener. A beautiful play from Tierney who found Saka on the edge of the box birthed the goal as Saka made no mistake in putting it past Ederson to make it 1-0.
Arsenal were resolute in defence as they were brilliant in attack, so great that City ended the first period without a shout on goal.
The first-half ended 1-0 to the gunners.
Just as it’s being said that there are no two equal halves in a football match, the tide soon changed in the second period as Manchester City came out with pure attacking intent.
Their efforts paid off when Switzerland international Granit Xhaka pulled Portuguese Bernardo Silva in the box which resulted in city getting a penalty.
All pleas from the Gunners to get the decision overruled by referee Stuart Artwell fell on deaf ears with some pushing and shoving in the box greeting the tensed atmosphere.
All that didn’t influence the referee’s decision as Riyadh Mahrez stepped up to take the penalty from 12 yards sending Aaron Ramsdale the wrong way.
Not long after City found the equaliser, an Arsenal player was sent off, Gabriel Maghalhaes was given a second yellow card after he pulled Gabriel Jesus in the centre circle.
Arsenal almost doubled the lead in an instant all thank to a Nathan Ake Goal line clearance, Martinelli should have scored on the rebound but missed target.
Both coaches made substitutions to change the shape of the match. City’s 1-man advantage counted for the majority of time, Manchester City kept on attacking, trying to find the winner. Joao Cancelo, Bernardo Silva and Riyad Mahrez all showed flashes of brilliance – all to no avail.
From the 80th minute onward, Arsenal seemed to have found their mojo, as they tried to force a defensive error from the Cityzens which was rebuffed.
City soon found the winner, A 93rd minute goal mouth scramble saw Rodri lash home from just a fee yards out to give City the winner.
The 2-1 victory sees City go 11 points ahead pending the outcome of the Chelsea and Liverpool match which will take place tomorrow.
Arsenal have now lost their 10th straight league game to City and are the first and only side to receive 100 red cards in the league.