The build up to this game was hijacked by Alexis Sanchez being dropped amid rumours of Arsenal selling him to Man United, but it should be billed as Jack Wilshere’s return to his old loan club, as all the focus is on him with Alexis and Ozil both missing.
The game got off to a quiet start and our first really big chance fell to Maitland-Niles, who made some room for himsellf inside the Cherries box, but his excellent shot came off the top of the bar. But Arsenal seemed to be lacking a bit of confidence but looked to be mostly in control for the first 15 minutes but Bournemouth got an occasional foray into the Arsenal half.
After 20 minutes Welbeck came close but Lacazette came away from a tackle with a limp. We certainly can’t afford to lose him as well! hen sraight away Iwobi was robbed going route one to the penalty area. Arsenal are having all the pressure but very little getting through to the danger area. Even Lacazette is seen on the wing to try and get some touches on the ball without getting closed down immediately! Bellerin and Iwobi are getting lots of room on the right wing but we are yet to see a good cross in the first half hour. It all seems to very lacklustre and the crowd is very quiet.
Jack Wilshere has definitely been the best player again so far and was working well with AMN in the middle. Welbeck has had a couple of chances but Bournemouth seem very happy to let Arsenal keep the ball while they defend deeply and they look comfortable just to have a breakaway now and then, but Cech is yet to be tested. But the Cherries decide to attack in the last 5 minutes of the half and Chambers blocks a shot that was probably the best chance of the half. The whistle goes and Bournemouth are not looking so much the underdogs and go in with their heads up….
The second half started like the first quite quietly, but suddenly five minutes in Bellerin burst down the win and into the box. It looked like Begovich managed to save it but the shot was too hard and bounced into the net. Arsenal get in front at last and the game should be opened up a bit now…
But Bournemouth break again and Xhaka got a nailed on yellow when he kicked out blatantly to stop the momentum, but nothing much else of notte happened in the first 20 minutes of the second period. Welbeck had a hand to his face but seems okay. But Bournemouth were trying hard to get the equalizer and suddenly a ball came in from the wing with four Arsenal players chasing Wilson down the flank, but a lovely cross comes in and somehow Cech fails to get there in time and the Cherries get the equalizer through Calum Wilson, who also scored against us twice last season. But Cech had a serious error of judgement to allow him to score.
Arsenal are suddenly looking nervous and Wenger brings on Ramsey for Chambers to try and get a winner, but with 15 minutes to go, Bournemouth are the ones to take advantage and Jordan Ibe jumps on a ball in the box and slots it past Cech. Oh my, Wenger doesn’t look very happy from the stands and it looks like the Gunners are going to go a fifth game in a row without a win. When was the last time that happened?
Wenger shows his desperation again and swaps Iwobi for Walcott who has only played 49 minutes in the League so far this season. Arsenal need to show siome urgency and Jack Wilshere gets the ball just outside the box but lamely shoots wide. Bournemouth have never beaten Arsenal in the Premier League before but they only have 8 minutes to hang on to change that.
But its just not happening for us, and Jordan Ibe nearly puts the game to bed. Arsenal finally start fighting in the last few minutes but no banana, and the 4 minutes added time is mostly spent in Arsenal’s half. Arsenal are left 5 points below both Liverpool and Tottenham and the Wenger trophy is receding into the distance. Oh well we’ve still got the Europa League!