Arsenal have remained top of the English Premier League table following a hard fought 2-1 win away at Aston Villa. Villa took the lead early in the first half but Arsenal responded and scored two goals in a destructive 15 minute period.
The first chance of the match fell to Arsenal in the 4th minute when Eboue had a long range low shot that was well saved to the keepers right. Villa took the surprise lead in the 14th minute following a Hleb stray pass in the midfield led to Villa’s attack. A Carew cross fell to Gardner who slotted in from a few yards out. The goal woke Arsenal up. In the 21st minute Rosicky’s corner was headed fractionally wide by Sagna. The equaliser came in the 23rd minute for Arsenal. A neat one two by Eboue followed by a cross was poorly cleared by Villa and allowed Flamini to clinically finish low and hard from the edge of the box. In the 30th minute Rosicky had a shot from 15 yards that was hit straight at the keeper hard, but saved. Arsenal continued to press and in the 34th minute Flamini continued to get involved in the action, firing a shot over the bar from 20 yards. Arsenal were rewarded for their swift passing and dominance in the 36th minute when an overlapping Sagna hit a whipping cross that found Adebayor. The Togolese Striker used his strength to rise high and powerfully head the ball pass the keeper. Arsenal went into the break deservedly leading 2-1.
Aston Villa came out the stronger side in the second half, looking to grab an equaliser. In the 55th minute Laursen shot wide from close range in a goal mouth scramble. Villa piled on the pressure and in the 62nd minute Young’s corss was met by Carew, who headed it into the crossbar. Arsenal continued to soak up the pressure and Villa didn’t have another clear cut chance until the 89th minute when Berger shot from 25 yards was straight at Almunia, and was well saved by the Spaniard. Arsenal ran out eventual 2-1 winners against a determined Villa team. The gritty win leaves Arsenal 5 points clear at the summit of English Football.