Arsenal were unable to keep the pressure up on the top four as they fell to a disappointing draw at home to Crystal Palace. The Emirates was a hostile place to be throughout the course of this match, which was a shame, as the Gunners were able to play some really nice stuff in the early stages of the contest.
Letting the side down
The home side got off to an absolute flyer of a start as they found themselves 2-0 up within a space of less than ten minutes. Sokratis Papastathopoulos and David Luiz were both able to capitalise from set pieces, putting the hosts in a pretty commanding position. However, anyone who has seen these two teams play recently would’ve known that we were a long way off of this game being done and dusted.
Luka Milivojevic scored from the penalty spot following what many considered to be a questionable decision, causing a little bit of concern (to say the least) heading into the half time interval. It took just seven minutes for Palace to draw themselves level after the break, with bargain buy Jordan Ayew nodding in the visitors’ second goal of the game.
The atmosphere around the ground began to turn toxic from there, with Granit Xhaka, the captain, being booed relentlessly upon being substituted. He reacted angrily to the fans, which only served to escalate a situation that was turning ugly pretty fast. It’s not the kind of scene that anyone wants to see inside the Emirates, especially given how much optimism there was surrounding the club at the start of the season in comparison to now. There’s still a long way to go, but the early signs aren’t exactly going to fill anyone with confidence prior to what will be a hectic winter period.
Sokratis was able to score from close range late in the day, seemingly handing Arsenal all three points in the process. Alas, it didn’t quite work out that way, with VAR’s intervention ensuring that the goal was chalked off. In the immediate aftermath of the game it was clear to see that most didn’t agree with the decision, but it stood regardless.
Arsenal will attempt to re-group ahead of a huge game against Liverpool in the Carabao Cup, before they host Wolverhampton Wanderers at the Emirates next weekend in a must win game.
What did you think about Arsenal’s draw against Crystal Palace?