Two goals in four minutes gave Arsenal the win in a day where all the top teams left it late to win. The Gunners were on top but will been disappointed to have let Hull City back into the game in the second half.
Hull’s gameplan involved good organisation from the midfield in front of the makeshift defence while looking to counter through Geovanni and Cousin playing right on the Gunners’ backline. The Tigers started the brighter and with their long balls to the mentioned front men could disrupt Arsenal’s play and leave less time to get organised.
The Gunners got back into the game and played some quick, one-touch football, with Van Persie and Adebayor alternating dropping deeper though the former looked make the Arsenal midfield a five when defending. Van Persie had two free kicks, one tipped on the bar by Myhill while Djourou was denied by a last ditch tackle by Mendy as the ball came down.
It was not to matter as soon Arsenal got the goal. Robin Van Persie whipping in a corner which was met by Adebayor (30) to head home. The Togolse striker linked up well in the half and drifted wide to provide support. Emmanuel Eboue slashed a shot wide after a good move soon after.
Abou Diaby was to detailed to help Adebayor challenge for goal kicks by pushing high up. He and Denilson provided the midfield shield when Arsenal attacked and one or the other pushed forward, usually the former though the attacking reigns were mainly left to the front four.
This time Arsenal started the half brighter but lacking the conviction and urgency to kill the game off which allowed Hull a way back. On 65 minutes the cross from Mendy was deflected slightly, finding his way to Cousin to head into the top corner. Gael Clichy backed off from Mendy to give the Frenchman time to cross. In fact the left back was cautious all game of Mendy’s pace and would have been relieved there wasn’t more damage caused.
Both teams looked for the killer as Arsene Wenger summoned Bendtner and the Dane’s direct running brought a good save from Myhill. However Arsenal’s class told in the end as Robin Van Persie, with three men around him, turned and found Samir Nasri (82) unmarked to place with his left foot. The substitution of Emmanuel Adebayor signalling the Dutchman as the main man for Arsenal now.
Van Persie created the third, as he looked offside when he recieved the ball from Bendtner and squeezed the ball back to the Dane (86) to finish off a good move from Arsenal.
A win from the Gunners ensures they stay in touch with their rivals but would feel should have killed the game off quicker
Arsenal: Almunia (6), Sagna (7), Toure (7), Djourou (7), Clichy (5), Eboue (5)[69 Bendtner (8)], Diaby (7), Denilson (6), Nasri (6), Adebayor (7) [(87 Song Billong (6)], Van Persie (8)*
Subs: Fabianski, Vela, Ramsey, Gibbs, Merida.
Hull: Myhill, Doyle, Turner, Ricketts, Kilbane, Mendy, France, Ashbee, Halmosi, Geovanni, Cousin. Subs: Duke, Dawson, Garcia, Folan, Fagan, Manucho, Giannakopoulos.
Ref: Alan Wiley
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