Aubameyang flops as Gunners trio steal show in win over Chelsea

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Gabriel’s goal-poaching effort from Bukayo Saka’s corner proved to be the difference in the London derby between Arsenal and Chelsea. Express Sport takes a look at three things learned from the match.

Aubameyang flops

The biggest storyline coming into this match was Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s first game against Arsenal since leaving the club back in January. He left under a huge cloud following a falling out with Arteta and there was clearly some bad blood between the two parties.

Aubameyang would have wanted to prove a point against his former manager, but he failed to make his mark. Arsenal’s defensive pairing of Gabriel and William Saliba proved to be too tough for Aubameyang to break down before he was brought off for Armando Broja.

Arsenal trio impress

Ben White

With Gareth Southgate picking his England squad for the World Cup next week, Ben White must surely be within a shout of making it. Transformed as a makeshift right-back this season, the 25-year-old has played a huge role in Arsenal’s impressive defensive record.

But he’s also starting to show glimpses of his talents getting forward and regularly getting involved in Arsenal’s attacks. His main attribute remaisn defensively though and kept Mason Mount largely quiet throughout the 90 minutes.

Martin Odegaard

Jorginho and Ruben Loftus-Cheek were struggling to keep tabs of the Arsenal skipper in the opening 45 minutes and found pockets of space to run his side’s attacks. Odegaard was also finding his team-mates with some brilliant-placed passes, only to be occasionally let down in the final third.

The Norwegian, by his own admission, could still contribute more in front of goal given his advanced role for Arteta’s side. But he’s the focal point of Arsenal’s midfield, taking most of the attention away from others which has arguably allowed Granit Xhaka to enjoy a mini revival this season.


William Saliba has stolen most of the headlines this season having finally made his debut three years after joining the club. And he’s quickly established himself as one of the first names on the teamsheet with some brilliant displays at the back.

But Gabriel was the one largely tasked with taking care of Aubameyang and he frustrated the forward throughout. The Brazilian defender won the majority of aerial duels against Arsenal’s former striker and hardly put a foot wrong.

Arteta winning formula

It’s a tricky thing for Premier League sides – particularly now more than ever with Manchester City’s dominance – to maintain momentum for prolonged periods of time and challenge at the top of the table. But Arteta has found exactly that at Arsenal this season and it’s making the Gunners genuine title contenders.

Many still tip City to walk away with the title come May, but Arsenal are doing everything right to prove their critics wrong. Now a win over Chelsea away from home puts them back on top heading into the final Premier League game before the World Cup. The biggest test will be after the World Cup and whether Arteta can pick up where they left off.

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