Arsenal move fourth with win at 10-man Watford
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored a fortunate winner as Arsenal scrapped their way to a 1-0 victory at 10-man Watford and fourth spot in the table.
Ben Foster took too long to clear the ball on 10 minutes as he walloped the ball off Aubameyang, and was horrified as it ended up in his own net.
Troy Deeney was harshly sent off a minute later when he was deemed to have elbowed Lucas Torreira in the face in competing for a loose ball.
After that it was Watford who had the better chances, with Adam Masina striking the post in the second half and Bernd Leno producing two good saves before the break.
Troy Deeney was sent off for WatfordPA Sport
Watford fought gamely, but Arsenal claim the three points to leapfrog Chelsea into fourth place in the Premier League table.
TALKING POINT Arsenal pick up a huge away win
This result will give Arsenal fans faith that the team can pick up the points they need to away from home to finish in the top four. They were gifted a goal and a numerical advantage early on, but when your road form is as bad as Arsenal’s perhaps you need those breaks.
Arsenal’s run-in has often been described as the easiest in the race for the top four, but trips to Wolverhampton, Leicester and Burnley look quite scary - not to mention an away match against Napoli on Thursday. Any away win - no matter how fortunate - is a huge psychological boost at this stage.
MAN OF THE MATCH Abdoulaye Doucoure (Watford)
Despite playing win more men for almost 80 minutes, Arsenal rarely felt in control of the game and a big reason for that was Doucoure. He helped Watford dominate the midfield battle while also providing an outlet when they went forward and can count himself unlucky to be on the losing side.
10’ - GOAL! Watford 0-1 Arsenal (Aubameyang). Arsenal lead out of nothing! Foster thinks he has more time on the ball than he actually does and his clearance is blocked by Aubameyang, which sends the ball ricocheting into the net.
- 11’ - RED CARD! Deeney is sent off! The Watford man closes down Torreira, who moves the ball on and then goes down holding his face, and Deeney is sent off after the referee consults his linesman. That looks soft – contact is minimal - but it was unnecessary from Deeney to leave his arm in.
- 20’ - SAVE! Great save, Leno! Masina pumps a free-kick into the box and some dreadful defending sees the ball sit up for Cathcart, who hammers it towards the near post but can't beat Leno, who reacted so quickly.
- 32 - SAVE! Capoue lines up a free-kick, gets it over the wall and produces a fine save from Leno at full stretch.
- 57’ - SAVE! Arsenal have an unbelievable chance as Iwobi gets past Kabasele to make it a four-on-two breakaway. He keeps the ball for quite a while but has a plan, picking out an unmarked Mkhitaryan at the back post, but Foster saves from point-blank rang
- 62’ - OFF THE POST! So close to a goal of the season contender! The ball is laid off to Masina, 35 yards from goal, and he hammers a shot against the bar. A superb hit.
- 80’ - GREAT BLOCK! A Success flick-on presents Gray with a fine chance and he rounds the goalkeeper, but that allows Maitland-Niles to come across and block his shot. Impressive defending from the youngster.
- Watford: Foster 4, Janmaat 6, Cathcart 6, Kabasele 7, Masina 6, Femenia 7, Doucoure 8, Capoue 7, Hughes 7, Gray 6, Deeney 2..subs: Success 6, Sema 5.
- Arsenal: Leno 7, Mustafi 4, Koscielny 6, Mavropanos 5, Monreal 7, Torreira 6, Xhaka 6, Mkhitaryan 5, Ramsey 6, Iwobi 5, Aubameyang 6..subs: Ozil 6, Maitland-Niles 7, Guendouzi 6.
- This is the first clean sheet Arsenal have kept away from home in the Premier League this season.
- Arsenal have won just three of their last 13 road games in all competitions.
- The goal was Aubameyang's 18th of the league campaign.
- The two have played 12 times in the Premier League and never produced a draw.