Arsenal return to winning ways by dismantling Chelsea

Arsenal eased the pressure on manager Mikel Arteta with a 3-1 win over Chelsea at the Emirates Stadium to bring their winless Premier League run to an end.

Alexandre Lacazette converted a penalty before Granit Xhaka’s superb free-kick doubled Arsenal’s lead just ahead of the break.

Chelsea, looking to stay hot on the heels of the chasing pack, were caught out again after 56 minutes when Bukayo Saka clipped home a third.

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Mohamed Elneny drilled a fierce effort against the crossbar, before Chelsea pulled a goal back after 85 minutes through Tammy Abraham, who was ruled onside by VAR after initially being flagged offside.

Gunners keeper Bernd Leno produced a fine save from Jorginho’s penalty in stoppage time as Arsenal closed out a first league win since beating Manchester United away at the start of November.

Before kick-off, the Gunners announced defender Gabriel was set to miss the next three matches due to self-isolation after being flagged as a close contact with someone who tested positive for Covid-19.

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Brazilian duo David Luiz and Willian were said to be “unwell”, but both recently returned negative tests.

Earlier, Leicester had fought back to draw 2-2 with Manchester United and stay second.

Marcus Rashford put United ahead when he scored from a Bruno Fernandes pass after 23 minutes.

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Harvey Barnes pulled the Foxes level in the 30th minute as he drilled a 20-yard effort past David De Gea.

In the 79th minute, Fernandes looked to have given United what would have been a record-equalling 11th consecutive away Premier League win after being played in by substitute Edinson Cavani.

Leicester, though, secured a share of the points with five minutes left when United defender Axel Tuanzebe diverted Jamie Vardy’s close-range effort into the net.

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Aston Villa overcame the dismissal of defender Tyrone Mings just before half-time to beat Crystal Palace 3-0 and move into fifth.

Bertrand Traore gave Villa an early lead when he turned home a rebound after Palace goalkeeper Vicente Guaita had saved Ollie Watkins’ shot from the edge of the area.

Traore saw his angled effort come back off a post before referee Anthony Taylor then consulted the pitchside monitor following a VAR check on a potential Crystal Palace penalty but decided not to overturn his original decision and play continued.

Aston Villa’s Tyrone Mings is shown a red card
Aston Villa’s Tyrone Mings is shown a red card

Villa were reduced to 10 men just before half-time when England international Mings was shown a second yellow card for blocking Wilfried Zaha’s run.

Palace had been looking to respond from their 7-0 home defeat by champions Liverpool last weekend but fell further behind after 66 minutes.

Anwar El Ghazi’s free-kick was headed against the bar by Watkins and Kortney Hause nodded the ball over the line despite the efforts of Guaita.

El Ghazi then added a third with 14 minutes left following a swift counter-attack, with Watkins denied a late fourth as his shot hit a post.

Southampton saw a late goal from Theo Walcott ruled out by VAR for offside in the build-up as they drew 0-0 at relegation-battlers Fulham.

Saints went close in the first half when James Ward-Prowse’s 25-yard free-kick crashed against the crossbar, with the rebound spinning away from Che Adams as he tried to knock the ball in.

In the second half, Shane Long, leading the attack in place of injured Danny Ings, had a goal chalked out for offside.

With five minutes left, Walcott looked to have secured a late winner – only for VAR to intervene again as Adams was ruled marginally offside in the build-up.