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Premier League Review: Arsenal pull through capital clash

Original article published 6 November 2022

Arsenal had to show character and resolve to climb back to the top of the Premier League after edging to a 1-0 victory at Chelsea on Sunday.

The Gunners dropped to second on Saturday following Manchester City's win over Fulham but they re-established a two-point cushion courtesy of Sunday's triumph at Stamford Bridge.

Elsewhere, the Unai Emery era at Aston Villa got off to a positive start as they beat Manchester United, while Newcastle continue to impress under the stewardship of Eddie Howe.

Arsenal aren't showing signs of slowing

As the weeks tick on by many expect Arsenal, who have failed to finish in the top four in each of the last six seasons, to slip up in the race for the Premier League title.

However, with 13 games on the board, the Gunners only appear to be growing in confidence and Sunday's 1-0 win at Chelsea was further evidence of that, as they are now priced at 5/1 to end the season as champions.

Conditions were tough at Stamford Bridge with the wind swirling and the rain pouring, but the north London side still found a way to claim three points courtesy of Gabriel's second-half strike.

It was a second successive loss for Chelsea, having gone down to a heavy defeat against Brighton last weekend, and leaves the Blues down in seventh.

Manchester City had to dig deep to keep the pressure on Arsenal during their home clash with Fulham on Saturday, with the Citizens now 1/5 to defend their crown.

Julian Alvarez put City ahead after 16 minutes and they were coasting through the game until Joao Cancelo was sent off and Fulham were awarded a penalty just shy of the half hour mark.

Andreas Pereira converted from 12 yards and the defending champions struggled to create clear-cut chances as the visitors attempted to hang on for a point.

But Erling Haaland, who started on the bench, proved to be the hero as he slotted home a penalty in the 95th minute to register his 18th league goal of the term and wrap up a dramatic late 2-1 victory.

City and Arsenal return to Premier League action on 12th November, their final game before the season breaks for the World Cup, with Pep Guardiola's side hosting Brentford, while the Gunners head to Wolves.

Free-scoring Newcastle dazzle at St Mary's

Newcastle's big-money takeover was always expected to see the club start climbing up the table but the speed in which they've improved has taken everyone by surprise.

Howe has pieced together a really impressive squad and Sunday's 4-1 win at Southampton has moved the Magpies up to third.

The north east outfit have scored four goals in each of their last two games and have netted 28 times this term - only City (39) and Arsenal (31) have a better record.

Miguel Almiron was on the scoresheet once again - registering for the fourth successive game - to take his season tally to eight.

Newcastle have still only tasted defeat once, losing to Liverpool in August, and they are unbeaten in nine, with six of their last seven outings ending in victory.

Tottenham started Sunday in third but ended it in fourth as they fell to a 2-1 loss at home to Liverpool.

A Mohammed Salah brace was enough to seal the win for the visiting Reds as they tasted victory on the road for the first time in the league this season.

Liverpool are up to eighth on the back of that result but they still trail fourth-placed Spurs by seven points.

Related Premier League News

Arsenal: Are the Gunners genuine title challengers this season?

What will Julen Lopetegui bring to Wolves?

Emery era off to a winning start

Emery took charge of Villa this week and, despite only having a matter of days to work with his squad, he oversaw a huge win over Manchester United on home soil.

Villa put memories of a 4-0 thrashing at Newcastle last weekend firmly behind them as they ran out 3-1 winners to pull three points clear of the relegation zone.

Leon Bailey, Lucas Digne and Jacob Ramsey found the back of the net to cancel out an own goal from the latter, as Villa ended United's nine-game unbeaten run across all competitions.

Home form has been key for Villa this term, with 13 of their 15 points coming on their own patch, and making Villa Park a fortress will be essential as they attempt to pull clear of the relegation scrap.

Leeds also boosted their hopes of beating the drop as they earned a second-successive win to open up a three-point cushion between themselves and the bottom three.

The Whites, who dramatically beat Liverpool late on last weekend, were once again involved in a hugely exciting game when Bournemouth visited on Saturday.

Rodrigo had Leeds ahead inside three minutes but the West Yorkshire side trailed 3-1 in the early stages of the second half.

Incredibly, Jesse Marsch's side managed to turn the game in their favour as Sam Greenwood and Liam Cooper saw it level at 3-3 before Crysencio Summerville, the hero at Anfield, notched with six minutes remaining to seal a 4-3 triumph.

Bournemouth lacking leadership

Bournemouth, priced at 1/2 to be relegated, are still yet to confirm Scott Parker's permanent successor in the dugout, despite parting ways with the man who led them to promotion on 30th August.

Interim boss Gary O'Neil has been in charge in the meantime and a lack of direction and stability now finally appears to be catching up with the Cherries.

O'Neil did initially steady the ship, enjoying a six-game unbeaten run, but Saturday's loss to Leeds was their fourth in a row and they have dropped down to 17th and only a point above the relegation zone.

It's looking extremely tight at the bottom with just four points separating 20th-placed Nottingham Forest and Leicester in 14th.

Forest, who are 2/5 to go down, were the only side in the bottom six to avoid defeat this weekend, holding Brentford to a 2-2 draw at the City Ground, while 6/5 Wolves, 7/4 Southampton, Bournemouth, 11/4 Everton and 14/1 West Ham all lost.

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