Belfast Telegraph

Giroud saves Arsenal but admits they must stamp out mistakes

Bournemouth 3 Arsenal 3

By Jim van Wijk

Olivier Giroud admitted Arsenal felt frustrated and disappointed despite coming back from three goals down to earn a last-gasp 3-3 draw at Bournemouth. The France striker headed the leveller, adding to goals from Alexis Sanchez and Lucas Perez as the Gunners recovered from their awful start to the game.

Charlie Daniels and a Callum Wilson penalty put the hosts in control and they got a third through Ryan Fraser soon after the break.

Bournemouth had Simon Francis sent off at 3-2 for a strong challenge on Aaron Ramsey and the 10 men were made to pay. Not that Giroud was feeling too buoyant.

"It's a shame we conceded three goals like that," he said. "We should not have made those kinds of mistakes.

"I'm still a bit disappointed. It's nice to be back in that game, but the way we played at the end, when we were 11 against 10, made me think we should have done better. ."

The Cherries started the game strongly, but the visitors failed to heed the early warning with the influential Junior Stanislas laying on the opener for the scampering Daniels to cut inside a bemused Hector Bellerin and buried a low shot past a stranded Petr Cech.

Arsenal continued to freeze, so Bournemouth struck again.

Stanislas and Wilson engineered a lightning break, sending Fraser into the box. Granit Xhaka naively bundled over the Scotsman, and Michael Oliver had no hesitation in pointing to the spot. Wilson kept enough composure to slide the Cherries into a 2-0 lead - and all inside 20 minutes.

Arsenal's problems deepened when Francis Coquelin hobbled off with a suspected hamstring injury, forcing Aaron Ramsey to drop deeper with Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain onto the right.

Giroud fluffed a header to open the second half, but Arsenal were quickly on the back foot once again. Harry Arter had a goal ruled out owing to a questionable handball from Wilson but Bournemouth did claim their third minutes later.

Fraser raced onto Daniels' ball, outmuscled Bellerin and slotted it through Cech's legs.

Arsenal finally woke up with 20 minutes to play. Giroud flicked on Oxlade-Chamberlain's right-wing cross, and the unmarked Sanchez did the rest.

When Perez volleyed home Giroud's savvy flick over the defence for Arsenal's second, Bournemouth's defending became more fraught and Xhaka laid on a fine cross for Giroud to nod home the equaliser.

Bournemouth: Boruc, Francis, Cook, Aké, Daniels, Arter, Gosling, Stanislas, King (Surman 63), Fraser (A Smith 68), Wilson (B Smith 90). Goals: Daniels 16, Wilson (pen) 20, Fraser 58 Subs not used: Federici, Mings, Mousset, Ibe.

Arsenal: Cech, Bellerin, Mustafi, Koscielny (Gabriel 64), Monreal, Coquelin (Oxlade-Chamberlain 28), Xhaka, Iwobi (Perez 63), Ramsey, Sanchez, Giroud.

Goals: Sanchez 70, Perez 75, Giroud 90

Subs not used: Ospina, Holding, Reine-Adelaide, Maitland-Niles.

Man of the match: Giroud

Match rating: 9/10

Referee: Michael Oliver

Belfast Telegraph

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph