In a match that could have had far-reaching implications for the Premier League title race, Arsenal blew a two-goal lead against Liverpool to draw 2-2 at Anfield on Sunday. The result allowed Manchester City to close the gap to six points at the top of the table with a game in hand. The defending champions now have the destiny of the title in their own hands.
Gabriel Martinelli and Gabriel Jesus had put Arsenal in a comfortable position, but Liverpool fought back through Mohamed Salah’s goal just before half-time. Roberto Firmino’s late header completed the comeback and earned Liverpool a deserved point. However, the match will be remembered for an incident just after half-time when an assistant referee elbowed Liverpool left-back Andy Robertson.
Arsenal’s title challenge hit by the result, as they now have failed to win a away game against Liverpool in the Premier League since 2012. This was a significant block between them and the title, and they will be disappointed after that perfect start.
Early Goal Gives Arsenal the Lead
Arsenal got off to a flying start when Bukayo Saka passed through the Liverpool defence and found Gabriel Martinelli, who strike the ball past Alisson Becker to give the visitors the lead after just eight minutes. Liverpool was caught out by Saka’s pace. Martinelli’s quick reactions create problems and made the difference.
Liverpool’s Defensive Struggles
Virgil van Dijk has been an essential part of Liverpool’s recent success, but his form has taken a significant hit this season. The Dutch centre-back was caught out of position for Arsenal’s second goal, which was utilized by Gabriel Jesus on 28 minutes. Martinelli’s picture perfect cross and Jesus was unmarked to head home past Alisson.
Liverpool fought back through Mohamed Salah, who reduced the deficit just before half-time. Jordan Henderson had a great chance to equalize, but he blazed over.
Elbowing Incident and Liverpool’s Second Half Comeback
The match took an unexpected turn when an assistant referee elbowed Liverpool left-back Andy Robertson just after half-time. This incident fired up Liverpool, who came out of the blocks quickly in the second half. They had a golden opportunity to level when Rob Holding brought down Diogo Jota, but Salah missed the penalty.
Salah nearly made amends moments later, but Aaron Ramsdale produced a stunning save to keep Arsenal in front. Firmino finally made Liverpool’s pressure count when he headed home Trent Alexander-Arnold’s cross to set up a grandstand finish. Salah blazed over a glorious chance before Ramsdale made remarkable saves from the Egyptian and Ibrahima Konate to ensure Arsenal escaped with a point.
Liverpool’s Title Hopes
Liverpool’s title hopes have all but disappeared after a poor run of form. They have failed to win any of their five games since the 7-0 victory over Manchester United last month. The Reds are down in eighth place, 12 points behind of the top four.
The draw at Anfield has thrown the Premier League title race wide open once again. Arsenal will be disappointed not to have won the game but they remain strong to be at the top of the table.
Liverpool’s hope of a top-four finish are fading fast . Jurgen Klopp’s side will need to improve quickly if they want to play in the Champions League football next season. Manchester City will be delighted by the result. They will be looking to close the gap when they host the Gunners at the Etihad later this month.