Arsenal defeat Leeds in 4-2 thriller
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored a hat-trick for the Gunners.
Despite being almost ¾ of the way through the Premier League season, Arsenal still found themselves in the bottom half of the table prior to this evening’s game against Leeds.
They had a horrific start to the season, finding themselves very close to the relegation zone for a prolonged period of time. Their improved form in January seen them climb the table but their February form left a lot to be desired going into the game, losing their previous 2 Premier League games.
They did, however, manage to get back to winning ways today with an impressive victory over a Leeds United side who have surpassed all expectations so far this season.
Arsenal started the game off with more intensity than they have done in previous games this season, moving the ball with intent and pressing quickly.
Their pressure paid off in the 13th minute as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang netted the opener. He received the ball and made space for himself with a few stepovers before accurately directing the ball into the bottom corner.
Aubameyang could have scored his second near the half-hour mark as he found space in the box and shot at goal but he was denied by an outstanding block by Luke Ayling.
Arsenal thought they had the chance to double their advantage in the 33rd minute as Bukayo Saka went down in the box after a brilliant run. Initially, the referee pointed to the spot to award a penalty but after further review from VAR, no penalty was awarded.
Just minutes later, though, Arsenal were awarded yet another penalty. However, this time it would stand. Saka earned the penalty again after pressuring goalkeeper Illan Meslier before being brought down in the box. Aubameyang stepped up to take the penalty and he made no mistake as he got his brace. 2-0 Arsenal.
Hector Bellerin all but finished the game off in the 44th minute as he made it 3-0 after an excellent period of play with Saka at the heart of it yet again.
The first half ended 3-0 to Arsenal in one of their most convincing performances of the season.
Arsenal’s goalscoring didn’t stop there.
Just 2 minutes into the second half and they had their fourth. Aubameyang was the goalscorer yet again as he got his hat-trick. Surprisingly enough, it was Aubameyang’s first Premier League hat-trick given the amount of goals he’s scored.
It was another defensive error that led to the goal. Helder Costa tried to play out from the back but was caught in possession and his error eventually led to an Aubameyang back-post header.
The Gabon international has looked a shadow of his former self this season but today’s performance could do him the world of good, particularly given the personal problems he’s had to endure recently.
Leeds showed they still had some fight left in them as they pulled one back in the 58th minute. It was Pascal Struijk who scored, and in doing so netted his first Premier League goal. The Dutch centre-back ventured into the box for a Leeds’ corner before he met the ball with an explosive header to make it 4-1.
Helder Costa was at fault for Arsenal’s fourth goal but he made up for that in the 68th minute as he finished off a fine Leeds’ move with a powerful finish inside the box. 4-2 Arsenal.
Unfortunately for Leeds though, that was about as far as their comeback would go.
The match finished 4-2 to Arsenal after a fantastic first half performance.
Leeds sat 10th and Arsenal sat 11th prior to the match. Now though, given Arsenal’s victory, the teams have switched positions with Arsenal moving into the top half.
Hat-trick hero Aubameyang fires Arsenal to victory in an end-to-end encounter#ARSLEE pic.twitter.com/QquD1nFhir
— Premier League (@premierleague) February 14, 2021
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