the three letters tar inside a cannon
article banner
JokAFC avatar


Arsenal 1-1 Wolves : Snatching a Draw From The Jaws of Defeat

Arsenal snatched a share of the points from the jaws of defeat, as a late goal from Henrikh Mkhitaryan denied Wolves the win.The Gunners were fortunate to avoid defeat in this game, with a performance that was probably the poorest in Unai Emery’s short tenure. The first half was underwhelming and the second half burst that has seen us grab many points thus far this campaign was not shown.Instead we had a clunky Arsenal, who failed to move the ball as swiftly as we know they can, and a Wolves side who never let us get into our stride.This wasn’t through sheer numbers in the final third either. Credit where it’s due, Nuno Espirito Santo has engineered a side that can mix it physically as well as with the ball on the deck.Unai Emery made only one change from the side that drew with Liverpool last week - Alex Iwobi came into the side. The Nigerian has been one of the bright spots this season, but this game won't show up in his own personal highlights.It wasn’t just Iwobi either. Granit Xhaka, Mesut Ozil and Aubameyang were all well below their best, and much of our sub-par showing was down to Wolves.In Jimenez and Costa, they have two players who are well suited to counter-attacking, and Neves and Adama Traore both add something special to the unit. They are well equipped to survive the Premier League, although this is now the fourth game on the bounce that the Midlands club have failed to win.They started brightly, and it didn’t take long for them to break the deadlock. Xhaka was caught in possession and Cavaleiro and Jimenez played a one-two, with Cavaleiro finishing well.This was 13 minutes in, and the rest of the first half was a battle, with any chances going mostly to Wolves. We did little to end our first half hoodoo - only us and Cardiff have failed to go in at half time with a leading scoreline.That didn’t change, and at half time, the outlook was bleak. Wolves had played far better than us, but we had seen this plenty of times before, we had the second half to look forward to.That didn’t exactly transpire though. Alex Iwobi was taken off at half time, as Emery switched things up, with Guendouzi coming on. It should’ve given us a foothold in midfield, but we weren’t clamping down on the service that Wolves were thriving from.It meant that Wolves were producing chances regularly, and when we produced anything, Wolves were on hand to block or throw bodies on the line. We had the possession, but when it came to getting clear air, it was a rarity.On the rare occasions that we did see a clear sight of
goal, The Wolves goalie was on hand, like when Torreira fired a long-ranger but it was expertly held by Rui Patricio.They say that no matter how badly you play, if you stay in contention, that you will get a golden chance to level things up - and this was indeed the case on the 73rd minute.Hector Bellerin played the ball in and Aubameyang’s audacious flick licked the post, with Patricio nowhere close to claiming it.It was the closest we had come and yet, we were still down. Unai Emery had one last shake of the dice, with Ozil and Kolasinac coming off for Ramsey and Mkhitaryan. We were now playing with a top heavy mix of offensive players in order to drag something from the game.Ten Minutes later, we had snatched something.We had been chucking everything at Wolves in the last fifteen minutes, as Wolves finally relented and backed into their final; third. Then , Mkhi swung in a cross, which evaded everyone and Patricio, expecting a touch from someone, saw it fall into the net.It hauled us level, but we were lucky not to lose the game late on too.Traore saw his venemous shot saved in the 92nd minute and then Morgan Gibbs-White, a youngster earning rave reviews, saw his shot from outside the box smack against the bar.Leno had saved us on more than one occasion - his save from Jota was especially impressive - and Holding and Mustafi again were clinical - we just didn’t get going.This was a case of us playing badly and scrabbling for a point. We are all disappointed, we should have enjoyed a win, but Wolves were the better side and…..This was our worst performance - and we still snatched a point.Now for two weeks of international football.Great.