Gunners strike back in Canaries triumph
Published 13/04/2013 | 17:21
Arsenal struck three late goals to move back into the top four of the Barclays Premier League and deny Norwich a famous victory in a 3-1 result at the Emirates Stadium.
With Chelsea and Tottenham not in action, the Gunners had the chance to put Champions League qualification back in their own hands. However, the Canaries produced a resolute battling display and took the lead on 56 minutes through Michael Turner's close-range header.
With the clock ticking, Arsenal were handed a way back into the match when the assistant referee spotted a shirt pull on Olivier Giroud. Mikel Arteta kept his cool from the spot to level, before Giroud's close-range effort turned the match around and substitute Lukas Podolski wrapped things up in stoppage time.
Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere returned from an ankle injury, a fit again Theo Walcott was on the bench and captain Thomas Vermaelen returned to defence.
Norwich started well as on-loan forward Kei Kamara offered support to captain Grant Holt and Robert Snodgrass in attack. Arsenal, however, were soon on the offensive, as a flowing move down the left saw Gervinho cut the ball back across the face of goal.
On 20 minutes, a clever flick from Wilshere at the edge of the Norwich penalty area sent Aaron Ramsey clear, but the ball bounced just too far ahead of the Wales international.
There was more purpose from Arsenal following the restart. However, it was the visiting supporters who were in full voice just before the hour as Turner headed Norwich into the lead.
Kieran Gibbs tripped Kamara on the edge of the Arsenal penalty area. Robert Snodgrass floated the free-kick towards the back post, where Turner rose to power a header into the bottom left corner after 56 minutes. Wenger then made a double change to bring on Walcott and Podolski, replacing Wilshere and Gervinho.
Arsenal were level with just two minutes left from the penalty spot. Following a corner, the assistant on the far side spotted a shirt pull by Kamara on Giroud. Arteta kept his nerve to guide the ball into the bottom-right corner just past Bunn's dive.
Arsenal turned things around when substitute Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain darted to the left and cut the ball back, where Giroud stabbed it home just ahead of Sebastien Bassong's challenge. After Jonny Howson's snapshot was saved by Lukasz Fabianski, it finished 3-1 to the Gunners when Podolski turned to drill home from 18 yards.