Arsenal’s good form continued today with a well deserved 2-1 win against Norwich at the Delia Bowl this afternoon.
The Gunners started with Koscielny at right back, pairing Mertesacker and Vermaelen at the centre of the defence, and made all the early running. They created two good openings in the early minutes for van Persie and Walcott before van Persie hit another shot just wide a few moments later.
Then Theo Walcott had a left footed effort cleared off the line as Arsenal looked for the first goal but it was the home side who got it. A simple ball over the top caught Mertesacker a bit flat-footed and he allowed Grant Morrisson in to score. 1-0 Norwich. There might have been a bit of a foul on the German but he’s experienced enough to have done better in that situation.
Gervinho then should have equalised when clean through but his effort was saved and was a taste of things to come from the Ivorian today. When Arsenal did score it was that man Robin van Persie again. Gervinho began the move, cutting in from the right hand side, he played it to van Persie who spread it Walcott. The England international fired in a low cross, Gervinho tried to back-heel it into the goal, missed the ball entirely and it came to van Persie who made it 1-1.
Arsenal pretty much dominated the second half in terms of possession and opportunities, but a reluctance to finish the chances made the game a bit more nervy than it should have been. Gervinho had two great chances. A header from 10 yards was tame and straight at the keeper, and then when he rounded the keeper after a sumptuous van Persie pass he delayed his shot just a split second to allow the keeper to get a touch and make the save when he should have scored.
It was little wonder then that when Arsenal broke from midfield with Alex Song he completely ignored Gervinho who was in a much better position than van Persie. The captain took a touch and his chipped finish over the keeper was sublime to make it 2-1 Arsenal.
Norwich then brought on lumpy striker Grant Holt who tried to win a penalty by diving and rightly got booked, and while it’s always a bit nail-biting at 2-1 away from home, they never really threatened bar one cross which fizzed across goal and was missed entirely by Pilkington.
Arsenal’s maturity and experience showed in the final 10 minutes as we kept possession really well under huge pressure from the home side and in the end were good value for the win and another three points.
Onwards and upwards.
Norwich: Ruddy, Naughton, Russell Martin, Barnett, Tierney, Crofts, Johnson, Fox, Pilkington, Hoolahan, Morison
Subs: Rudd, Drury, Holt, Jackson, Surman, Bennett, Wilbraham
Arsenal: Szczesny, Koscielny, Mertesacker, Vermaelen, Andre Santos, Ramsey, Arteta, Song, Walcott, van Persie, Gervinho
Subs: Fabianski, Rosicky, Djourou, Arshavin, Chamakh, Benayoun, Coquelin
Goals: Morrisson 16: Van Persie 27, 59
Misses: Gervinho 18, 34, 41, 48, 51, 53, 56,