Leicester City stole a draw in the latter stages of the tie at the Emirates, but they can thank the disappointing sending off of Eddie Nketiah for his role in changing the tide of the match
Arsenal started the game positively, pushing forward at speed and putting our rivals under pressure. As Leicester do however, they remained an organised unit and were initially refusing to allow us to get into their box too much.
This soon changed however, with Bukayo Saka, Lacazette and Aubameyang all moving off the ball incredibly, and our opponents really began to look under pressure.
We opened the scoring just over 20 minutes into the match, when Saka lost his man down the right-flank, before he fakes the defender into falling on his butt, before gifting Aubameyang the perfect pass to tap into open net.
After the opener, Alexandre Lacazette really began to put pressure on our peers, with his link-up play and movement causing havoc for Leicester. The Frenchman could maybe have done better with his two key chances before the break, but the main talking point after the goal came at the other end.
Kelechi Iheanacho thought he had gotten himself on the scoresheet, after Jamie Vardy peeled out to the left before putting a pinpoint cross into the Nigerian, who slotted home, only for the referee to blow up over an incident off the ball. Kelechi had collided with an Arsenal defender in the build-up, and the goal didn’t stand.
Arsenal began the second-half very much on the front foot again, putting pressure on the Foxes, but they regained the organisation and were limiting our touches in their area once more.
Mikel Arteta moved to bring on Joe Willock and Eddie Nketiah with just 20 minutes left to pay, but the changes did not go to plan.
The young forward lasted only four minutes into the match when a late challenge on Leicester City’s number two, James Justin saw VAR called into play, and there was little surprise upon seeing the replays that the decision was to be a red card.
We took off our two best players thus far today, for Nketiah, only for the game to fall away at our feet.
It’s inevitable that without our key attacking outlets, and not enough options to work with Aubameyang in attack that our chances of scoring were now gone.
Naturally, with Leicester City now given the impetus to attack, and very much full of steam following the events, our team soon found themselves pegged back.
Jamie ‘I love to score against Arsenal’ Vardy gets his name on the scoresheet of course, getting his tenth Premier League goal against our side, in 10 appearances, and we now look destined to walk away wounded from the match.
I can’t tell you how many more chances the Foxes had to win the match, as I admittedly was struggling to watch the closing stages in anticipation for that losing goal coming in, but the fact that we didn’t lose didn’t fill me with any warmth.
Arsenal were the best team throughout the match until Nketiah’s silly decision to lunge in, and he will most certainly take much of the blame, although taking off both Laca n Saka for Willock and Nketiah raises its own questions…
Was Arteta looking to alter the formation with those changes? Will Nketiah come under pressure after his dismissal? Did the red card cost us the match or was our wastefulness before that more crucial in defining the result?