Thursday, April 25, 2024

Report: Manchester City 0-0 Arsenal

Arsenal: Raya, White, Saliba, Gabriel, Kiwior, Jorginho, Rice, Odegaard, Saka, Jesus, Havertz

Subs: Ramsdale, Tomiyasu, Zinchenko, Vieira, Partey, Smith Rowe, Martinelli, Trossard, Nketiah

It was honours even at Etihad Stadium after Arsenal put in a strong defensive performance to draw 0-0 with Manchester City, ending their 57-game home scoring streak in the process.

Mikel Arteta made one change to the side that beat Porto before the international break, with Gabriel Jesus replacing Leandro Trossard.

Bukayo Saka and Gabriel also shook of knocks to start, with Gabriel Martinelli returning to the bench after three weeks out with a foot laceration.

After some early City possession, Arsenal had the first sight of goal when Jesus controlled Ben White’s lofted cross at the back post but scuffed his volleyed effort wide.

The first 15 minutes were otherwise dominated by the hosts and Nathan Ake should have put them ahead, only to miscue his header from six yards straight into the body of David Raya.

It was a difficult start for Arteta’s men who were forced to retreat quite deep, although their defensive structure was organised with City struggling to create clear opportunities.

Pep Guardiola was forced into a change after 25 minutes with Rico Lewis replacing Ake who was struggling with a calf problem, moving Manuel Akanji back into centre back alongside Ruben Dias.

After some lovely interplay down the right between Martin Odegaard and White, there was another opportunity for Jesus who beat two City defenders before dragging his left-footed effort wide.

Jesus was the danger man again shortly after, when a stray pass from Mateo Kovacic allowed Odegaard to pounce, the Brazilian was then found by Declan Rice but delayed his shot after drifting inside before being crowded out.

Much like the Emirates fixture last September, this was a cagey affair between two teams who were happy to wait for mistakes – evenly matched in chances even if they weren’t in possession.

It ended up goalless at half time and while the Gunners were likely deeper than Arteta would have liked, they limited City to just one opportunity and could regroup again during the break.

City registered the first shot of the second half when Kovacic tried his luck from range, but curled comfortably wide with Raya covering the angle.

But then another Arsenal chance fell to Jesus after Saka was found in behind, but the Brazilian wasn’t aggressive enough in his movement to the back post and couldn’t meet his low cross.

After a cagey, low intensity first half, the second half had already started with more fire and City were not shy about circling referee Anthony Taylor.

Guardiola wasted little time bringing Jeremy Doku and Jack Grealish on – they replaced Phil Foden and Kovacic – in hope of injecting some pace into his sides’ play.

Arteta then responded by bringing on Takehiro Tomiyasu and Thomas Partey, for Jakub Kiwior and Jorginho.

City began to push for their goal and sustained waves of pressure required alert Arsenal defending – some brave, some last ditch – with William Saliba, Gabriel and White all strong when needed.

Saka was then withdrawn and limped off the pitch with Martinelli replacing him, in hope of adding more counter attacking threat against a tiring backline.

For the first time all afternoon, Erling Haaland had a great chance to test Raya after escaping Saliba at the back post but scuffed his effort under pressure from the Spanish goalkeeper.

At the other end, Arsenal had a great chance to land their punch after Trossard was played in behind by Odegaard, only to delay when a square pass was on for Martinelli at the back post.

He was eventually closed down by Akanji and fired his effort straight at Ortega.

City continued to push for a winner but more excellent defending – from Gabriel in particular – ensured the points were shared in an even, yet intense title clash.

It was the first time all season that both sides were unable to score and Liverpool will be happiest with that result after their win over Brighton earlier on Sunday.

But if Arsenal couldn’t win this game, it was absolutely imperative not to lose it and they didn’t.

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Rog

Saliba.

BillyKrystal

Gabriel

Ebo

Ødegaard

StuArse

He looked so tired I. The last 15 mins but his passion and commitment is off the charts.

Jimster

Have you seen how much pressing he does, for a creative player it’s immense, he really gives a fuck!!

Johnny 4 Hats

Ozil pressed.

Mikel’s buttons.

Ebo

Wasn’t Martin’s best game creatively to be fair (not his worst either) but his pressing, his effort and work rate and tackling were honestly insane and I think also responsible for half our chances, and they keep setting the standard for this team. That man is the definition of leading by example, what a great captain.

Dada

Raya.

Artedu

Did any of you see Haaland ?

Tomaury Bischfeld

Wholand?

Spanner

Hahaland

TeeCee

He was that suspicious bulge in Big Willy’s pocket.

chepetin

Is that Haaland in your pocket or are you just glad to see me?

9ja Gunner

Lol

Henkamp

Both of ’em are monsters! And Rice was BRILLIANT against De Brunye in stopping most of his transition chances. Great display. Let’s win all our games left now and hope someone tonks Liverpool soon.

Dada

Almost every single City player had cuntish behavior. Just supreme cunts. But you know what, I was never afraid. I was nevr bothered.

StuArse

I just cannot stand Rodri, what a prick. Pity he is actually pretty decent player.

Dada

Unlovable

9ja Gunner

Gabriel was the man today

Arsedownunder

I’ll take it

Earlcourt

Arsenal will win the league.
Frame and hang this comment on the wall.

RockyRog58

Shows how far we’ve come that I’m disappointed !!! Big shout to those rocks of defenders at the back ! Best in the league possibly Europe ?
I’ll take the point thank you !

Fatgooner

A rubbish, awful game. But a great result.

Gabriel and Saliba joint MOTM.

We’ve taken 4 points off both City and Liverpool. We deserve to win the title.

Artedu

MOTM is MØ

Fatgooner

No way. We contained City comfortably for 90 minutes but didn’t do much going forward. No shots on goal.

The point was a fair result. Had we been a bit braver we might have nicked all three.

But it’s been a good day.

VAgooner

We had two shots on goal to their one, according to official stats…

Dunno what you’re on about.

Fatgooner

I must have missed them

TotsOfJack

Agree. It’s a good point. But we should’ve been braver. We weren’t at our best going forward, but defensively it was another masterclass from the boys.

Santi’s Phonebox

Arsenal have been accused of being naive (braver) previously only to lose the game when a point was the better outcome. We were smarter today not risking the loss by being braver when that would have been naive. Hard to have it both ways.

Flash

I don’t think it was an awful game. Just the opposite in my opinion. Slowly but surely we are becoming the team that can perform continously at a level that maybe a dozen other team can produce day by day in Europe.

I think it was an enormous performance both by the team and staff (and the away fans 🙂

COYG!

Ebo

Agreed, it was a super intense game with a bunch of chances that could’ve easily gone in, and a bunch of near chances where the final pass was just off. The game against them at the Emirates was much more of a yawn-fest (though equally intense). Today wasn’t a classic, but I was rarely bored.

truj

Arsenal got 8 points against their title rivals who got 4 each. Strong performances at the top.

😇🚗☀️

didn’t they get 1 point each?

Heiku

3 each i think in the top 3 mini league.

😇🚗☀️

Gotcha

truj

Right

Aussie Gooner

Will Haaland find his way back out of Gabby’s pocket? Saliba is standing guard ensuring he doesn’t.. The one game we couldn’t afford to lose, we didn’t lose.. Advantage Liverpool but I think we should be fine.. Liverpool on the other hand will drip points, it’s when not if.. our competition is city, we need 9/9 wins to win it..

AusGunner

I’ve been saying “oh yeah Liverpool will drop points” since like October and I’m starting to get a bit worried. Given their injury issues and their poor form last season I have to say it would be one of the all-time great title winning campaigns if Liverpool do it this season.

Shivam

Exactly, almost everyone says they will drop points but they keep willing, and keep winning from difficult position. Maybe the klopp leaving thing has given them a great push to do it for klopp.

Shivam

*winning

MeSoHornsey

Nah, I watched that game and Brighton were average yet Pool still made a meal of it. They’ll drop points. Im still more concerned about City.

Ebo

Incredible effort by this team, great mentality, we went there, we tried to play and we weren’t afraid of them. Anybody could’ve won it, in the end nobody did. But that’s progress. Felt like the difference between a win and a draw was that Trossard fast break where he didn’t pass it to Martinelli. Come on Leo, that’s what Martinelli is for! Still, really good result for us in that place 👏👏

Joker

He needed to maintain the width and play the ball into the box early when there was still space to run in behind. As it was he drove in to the centre and got crowded out. A player as intelligent as Trossard should know better. That was the moment.

Ebo

Exactly. I can’t get out of my head that if it was Ode or Jorgi in that spot that ball would be out to Martinelli in an instant curving outwards on the ground to avoid the defender in the middle, and getting to him in stride… bah. And if the queen had a pair of bollocks… let’s win the rest of our games and this will hopefully be moot in the end

Shivam

Absolutely, little decisions can make such a difference

Bq123

I think it was just his first touch was bad and then the passing chance was gone

Joker

Pleased with that. An away draw to City is never a bad result.

Grommet

Proud of the boys. We were not 2nd best in any way today. Happy with the result because we didn’t let them win. Was also happy to see Tomiyasu, Partey and Martinelli on the pitch. What a time to be a gunner!! In my 13 years of following Arsenal I’ve never seen us be this solid.

VAgooner

Record versus City this season: 2W-0L-1D

If that doesn’t tell you what progress Arteta is making with this (still incredibly young) squad, nothing will.

Shivam

Those numbers tell that if the players don’t let the occasion get to them, they have a great chance in the CL!

AusGunner

Technically it’s won 1 drawn 2. Games won on penalties in cup competitions (in England at least, I think?) go down as a draw officially.

VAgooner

Not in my heart it’s not.

Collibosher

Only on Football Pools coupons.

Heiku

This is true and is the reason why both France and Argentina won the world cup. They rotate the trophy between the two countries every six months.

Vieiraera

Willie!!! Immense! Hope Saka is ok. Seems he played thru an injury. If only Jesus didnt overplay at times, we might have nicked it. But it’s a vital point. No team have shut citeh down at the etihad like this all season.

😇🚗☀️

“Arsenal have kept a clean sheet in both of their league meetings with Manchester City this season, making them just the fourth side to shut out a Pep Guardiola side in two league matches in the same season, after Borussia Mönchengladbach in 2014-15, Manchester United in 2020-21, and Crystal Palace in 2021-22.”

Scrubbychubby

Great stat.

Arsenalista

Long gone are the days of an expected mistake at the back. Absolutely monster defense! We should fear nobody at all. This team is good enough to win the Champions league and the Premier league, now it’s time to hunt Liverpool down.

Spanner

That is the way to play in order to win it too.

Aleksander Wło darz

The football Gods may favour Jurgen r Klopp due to his enormous white shiny teethset… made in Turkey probably

Ebo

what

Aleksander Wło darz

C’mon, see the funny side of the game guys.

Kaseenge

I’d rather be a couple of points behind Liverpool than behind this bot-like team called City at this point of the season. Liverpool will definitely drop points, especially away from home. Arsenal, meanwhile, are building a head of team at just the right moment

AusGunner

Had a feeling it would be that sort of game. You have to give credit to the defence and I think calling it Grahamesque is right, and flattering given the quality of the opposition. We wanted more control this season and we’ve certainly got it. And we’ll need a performance of similarly impressive defensive concentration against Villa, Sp*rs, United as well. The interlull just before this game halting our rhythm perhaps has to be taken into consideration too. But while there was lots that was really good from us, transitions, touch and link-up play in their half were pretty disappointing… Read more »

VAgooner

they have the resources to interchange players without a significant drop in quality

This. People seem to discount the advantage that having a starting 11 of internationals backed up by a bench full of internationals provides. It’s like a cheat code in a video game. The fact that ANYONE can hang with them, much less a team built organically like Arsenal, is incredible.

Gary

City have replacements that are almost all internationals? They’ve spent almost a billion dollars trying to get their back line straight. Personally I think Akanji is an upgrade on Walker and Gvardiol has been starting games recently. Besides Ortega in goal I don’t see that much change at all. In turn, they couldn’t break us down. We haven’t had a defensively solid team as these boys in the last 15 years. Arteta and Edu doing tremendous work

AP Goonee

Great defensive display by the boys today. So proud of them. Shoutout ro Saliba and Gabriel who pocketed Haaland like a petulant kid he is. Special mention to our own White also. No place to attack on the right side today. Odegard is the captain we have been waiting for. And what a player is Rice. 100 million is too cheap.

Artedu

MØ Rice Havertz White Gabriel Jesus never looked out of depth
Raya Saliba Saka Kiwior on the other hand looked like they were scared.

Bleeding gums Murphy

Saliba, are you mental. 😂

Artedu

Saliba was scared on the ball. Usually he is close to 92%. This game I bet he will be close to 80 which is very low for defender

The Beast

Didn’t Saliba get MOTM?

Thought everyone played their part today.

Arteta Tots

Gutted to have dropped two points. I know its ManC but its not like Etihad is a fortress. Defense was on point and such a stable platform to potentially snatch a win

Doctor Perceptron

I hope this is sarcasm. Etihad not a fortress? This is the first time City have failed to score there in something like 50 games 🙄

KArse

What the actual fuck? Havent lost like 33 Games in a row there.

MTGooner

Dare I say I like our squad depth above any of the title contenders? Reiss couldn’t even get in the team. A lot of options that can help us to play differently and change the flow and tempo. One of the best points we can possibly win, but a draw for this team feels disappointing.

Doctor Perceptron

Agreed. City and Liverpool players dropping like flies and we have everyone coming back now. I fancy us for the run in.

Processinator

Spurs will take points off City & Pool and handover the league to Arsenal.

Santi’s Phonebox

Com’on mate!

StuArse

Not sure what to conclude from that game really. Great defensive resilience, but not quite composed enough in possession.
Amazing how different the refereeing is in the PL compared to CL. There would have been a lot more fouls and cards in that game if it was the same refs as the Porto games.

Chippy

In fairness I thought he reffed it ok today.

Santi’s Phonebox

Was not a disgrace to his federation but there’s always the next game for Anthony.

Baron

Good game, good result. Not so good in attack today, but excellent in defense. Saka was obviously carrying a knock & it showed from the first kick. I hope he’s fit enough soonest. For all of City’s possession we were never in any real trouble for the entirety of the match. When last were we able to say that after a game at the Etihad over the past decade? A mature & truly composed performance overall & i loved it. Another mental hurdle successfully scaled today. Losing at the Etihad is no longer a certainty. Liverpool are obviously the big… Read more »

Nikleson

Definite building block on last seasons game.

JWob

Great result but it seems like every Arsenal-City game is just awful. Control vs control gives you this cagey nothingness. Liverpool-City and Liverpool-Arsenal games are electric, with the styles working really well.

I don’t mean to be negative… If we are blessed to have an Arsenal City rivalry for some years, I hope these games can get more fun.

Santi’s Phonebox

Depends on how YOU define fun. For me it was a lot of fun seeing City’s most expensive lawn statue held to nothing for an entire game, watching DeBruyne huff and puff, run around and never hit that ball that tears us open, or see that long ball come at us over the top and have a defender just miss a step on the first touch, all things that happened to us previously. This was a game of duels and team defense nullifying offensive individual performances after an interlull at the hardest ground to offensively play. It was a good… Read more »

9ja Gunner

Great result from the boys. Onwards we go.

Collibosher

I was watching the Women’s Conti Cup final as it was on BBC. After the final whistle, there was a bit of a lull as everyone was getting prepared for the medal ceremonies, and there was suddenly a huge cheer from the Arsenal fans. I checked the score for this game convinced that we had scored, so when it finished 0-0 I was a little disappointed. Still, great results for both teams. Excluding ourselves, of course, we played the best men’s team and the best women’s team and didn’t concede a goal.

Jimster

Pep should go on a manager’s course, the way he spoke to Grealish, you do that behind closed doors. I’d be off if someone coated me off I’m public, KNOB! COYG!!! Perfect lesson in defending!

Scrubbychubby

4 points against City this season. Such a step forward. 9 games left and everything to play for. At this moment in time, no one can say that Liverpool or City are genuinely better than Arsenal.

Red Cannon

De Brunye’s haircut is stupid.

Santi’s Phonebox

Classic Dutch style.

Flash

De bruyne has become a right entitled prick, beginning to tarnish his potential legacy. This is a good result in a vacuum but hurts our title chances overall. Not really sure how I feel at the end of the day. Certainly could have been worse.

Flash

Also, just to toot my own trumpet a bit, called the 0-0 when I saw the lineups. Didn’t have the balls to bet but two of the people I was with at the time did. Insane at 11/1

Odinelli

This felt like a game for Timber and Partey.

They would have made a huge difference had they been fit.

We would have broken their press more often.

And Timbers ability on the ball and his off ball positioning and interceptions would have allowed Rice to push further up and deny whichever city ‘Right sided 8.5‘ time and space on the ball.

Jesus was covering the half space so often, we had a back 5. That gave us no outlet and a very isolated Saka.

Gary

why is City constantly waving the yellows? Constant whining. Btw Benny Blanco is awesome and the engine on Odegard is amazing

Chris

Limiting them to a scoreless draw was as delicious as any Easter Sunday dinner. We closed the door on them in their own house.

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