Arsenal 2-0 Newcastle: Alexandre Lacazette sends Gunners above Man Utd and Tottenham

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Aaron Ramsey, who will leave for Juventus in the summer when his contract expires, tucked away the opener before Alexandre Lacazette made sure of the points with a lofted finish in the closing stages.

The victory takes Unai Emery’s side above both Tottenham and Manchester United in the top-four race and extended their run of home league wins to 10.

In moving on to 63 points, the Gunners have equalled their tally from the whole of last season – Arsene Wenger’s final campaign at the helm – and given themselves a good opportunity to end a two-year hiatus from Europe’s elite club competition.

Only reigning champions Manchester City can boast a better record in front of their own fans this season – but Arsenal have only two home games remaining and need to add to their five wins on the road if they are to maintain their top-four position.

ARSENAL 2-0 NEWCASTLE | RAMSEY (29), LACAZETTE (82)

Arsenal XI: Leno, Maitland-Niles, Sokratis, Mustafi, Monreal, Kolasinac, Guendouzi, Ramsey, Iwobi, Ozil, Lacazette

Newcastle XI: Dubravka, Yedlin, Lejeune, Lascelles, Dummett, Ritchie, Hayden, Diame, Perez, Almiron, Rondon

  • Aaron Ramsey goal disallowed for foul inside the box
  • Aaron Ramsey opens the scoring with clinical finish
  • Alexandre Lacazette chips Dubravka for Arsenal’s second

‘We are happy’

22:05: Arsenal goalscorer Alexandre Lacazette: “It was a big game tonight, a tough game. The coach said we had to be patient and efficient in the box and we did that.

“It’s always like this against Newcastle. We are happy.

“I can feel the difference in the atmosphere from last season, now we can maybe go to the Champions League. The fans helped us to get third place. We work every day to be in third place, now we must stay in this position.

“I would like to score away from home too but if we win that’s all that is important. We are more confident, everybody knows what we have to do.”

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

ARSENAL 2-0 NEWCASTLE

FT: Done and dusted! Arsenal have moved above Tottenham and Manchester United into third position. Still plenty of games left but Arsenal in pole-position for a Champions League qualification spot.

92: Arsenal just knocking it around midfield now as Newcastle accept their 2-0 defeat.

Lacazette opens his box of skills and nutmegs Lascelles, who didn’t much appreciate it. Mkhitaryan eventually receives the ball and sends it into the stands.

90: Lacazette looks to feed Aubameyang with a pass through the middle but Dummett manages to block, and the Magpies soon clear.

Four minutes added time.

88: Arsenal fans: “Are you watching Tottenham?” Arsenal set to go above Tottenham in the Premier League for the first time this season.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

86: Disallowed goal! Lacazette thinks he’s grabbed his second and Arsenal’s third but referee Anthony Taylor blows for a foul inside the box.

Just seeing a replay and it actually looks like the Frenchman was the person being fouled…

84: A third and final Arsenal change sees Mkhitaryan replace Ozil.

ARSENAL 2-0 NEWCASTLE | LACAZETTE

82: Erm… did I say nerves were setting in? Forget that because Alexandre Lacazette has wrapped up the three points with a sublime finish.

The Frenchman nips between the two Newcastle centre-backs to chip Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s flick over Martin Dubravka.

81: Bosh! Newcastle setting up for a grandstand finish here as Ki Sung-yueng hammers a loose ball over the crossbar. Nerves setting in…

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

80: I’ll give Yoshinori Muto the benefit of the doubt as he’s only just arrived. The striker twists and turns himself into oblivion before being dispossessed. Not too smart there.

78: Kenedy on for Matt Ritchie to try and break into Arsenal territory. He’s roundly booed for being a Chelsea loanee – Arsenal fans putting their loan knowledge to good effect…

Yoshinori Muto replaces Ayoze Perez.

75: Save! Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang tears down the left channel before cutting inside and leathering one straight at Dubravka, who does well to parry it away.

73: Into the final 20 minutes now and Arsenal still have their slender lead.

Mo Diame goes in the book for clumsily bringing down Mesut Ozil. That decision gets ironic cheer from the Gunners faithful, who believe they should have had a penalty earlier.

70: Quit while you’re ahead, Mustafi…

The defender reads Almiron’s forward pass well and decides to counter himself. He’s cheered by supporters right up until the moment his cross lands on the moon.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

68: Isaac Hayden off, Ki Sung-yueng on. Aaron Ramsey also goes off what what looks like an injury. Mohamed Elneny comes on.

65: Penalty appeal! Now I don’t think you can give that. Paul Dummett slides in on Alexandre Lacazette and the ball cannons up off the defender’s arm. His eyes were closed.

Sokratis gets off the ground to meet Ozil’s corner from the left but the Greek can only direct his header high and wide of the near post.

64: Quite a bit of anxiety around the Emirates now. Bernd Leno hasn’t been tested – but Gunners fans really want a second to make this more comfortable.

61: First change of the evening follows shortly after with Alex Iwobi replaced by Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang. Last persona Newcastle defenders will have wanted to see.

59: Ainsley Maitland-Niles is back up and playing on.

Elsewhere we’ve had out first booking of the evening and it has gone to Nacho Monreal, who went to ground with his studs showing. Few complaints about that caution for the Spaniard.

56: Great watching Mesut Ozil in this kind of mood. The playmaker receives the ball back from Lacazette after a naughty step over but can’t pick out a red shirt.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

54: The pattern of the game is very much the same as the first half. Arsenal dominating possession – moving it from left to right to try and get some change out of this organised Newcastle side.

As for the visitors – they’ve played exclusively on the break and that doesn’t look like changing anytime soon.

Lengthy pause in play with Ainsley Maitland-Niles on the deck after a collision with Matt Ritchie.

51: The Toon might have a problem here. Isaac Hayden is moving gingerly and bends down to clutch his knee a couple of times before trying to run it off.

Not sure how effective that is as a medical solution…

48: Sokratis is nearly caught in possession by Ritchie for the umpteenth time. Leno is quickly out to collect before the Newcastle man could sneak in.

ARSENAL 1-0 NEWCASTLE

45: Back underway folks. Just shoved down 10kgs worth of spaghetti bolognese during the break – could be an interesting second half away from the football.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: GETTY)

Twitter round-up

Hugh: Mustafi gives me a headache every time he’s anywhere near the ball. Not sure if it’s confidence or he’s truly the worst CB we’ve had for a while but if we could keep the ball as far away from him for as long as possible that would be great.

Beth: I would rather play with 10 men than having Mustafi in my team. He is such an error-prone.

Jam: Dear Kolasinac, if no one ever told you I’m telling you now; full backs are also allowed to head and score, to shoot & score. Not passing only.

Such an error-prone what, Beth? I have to know!

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

ARSENAL 1-0 NEWCASTLE

HT: Drama until the death here at the Emirates. Alexandre Lacazette slams the ball from eight-yards out and Matt Ritchie somehow twists his body to head it wide. Ritchie > Lloris.

Arsenal deservedly ahead through that Aaron Ramsey goal. Could have and probably should have been more.

45: Sead Kolasinac is responsible for Arsenal frustration at the minute. Three or four times the Gunners have had numbers but the full-back fails with his final ball.

One minute added time.

43: Some useful pressure from the visitors as we approach the half-time whistle. Shkodran Mustafi plays a woefully short pass and Salomon Rondon nearly powers through.

40: Oh behave, Arsenal. Scintillating one-touch passing releases Kolasinac down the left channel. His cross is heading straight for an unmarked Ramsey but Dubravka makes the stop.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

38: Lovely play from the hosts. Alexandre Lacazette wriggles into the penalty area before cutting it back for Aaron Ramsey. The Welshman’s effort is blocked and the rebound falls to Mesut Ozil to pick Kolasinac out with a wonderful cross. Offside.

36: Arsenal are unbeaten in their last 38 Premier League home games in which they’ve scored the first goal (W36 D2) since a 3-4 loss against Liverpool in August 2016.

34: Nearly an immediate response from the Magpies, as Rondon calls Leno into action after bringing the ball down and taking aim. Arsenal then deal with back-to-back corners.

32: That goal sends Arsenal into third position – two points above Tottenham and Manchester United.

ARSENAL 1-0 NEWCASTLE | RAMSEY

29: Lock up your celebrities – because Aaron Ramsey won’t be denied!

15 minutes after seeing his goal disallowed – the Juventus-bound midfielder has given Arsenal the lead with a clinical finish.

It’s a quick move from the hosts with Alex Iwobi, Guendouzi and Lacazette all involved. The ball deflects back to Ramsey, who elegantly finishes in off the post.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

26: SNAP! Blood and guts stuff in the middle of the park with Diame and Guendouzi diving in. The ball eventually falls to Kolasinac, who looks to find Lacazette in the middle.

The Frenchman clearly pushes Ritchie to the deck to gain an advantage but gets away with it and makes a poor connection with the cross.

24: Alexandre Lacazette does well to hold his line and aims to pick out Nacho Monreal with a cutback, but Jamaal Lascelles is alert to the danger and produces an important interception.

21: Newcastle are so compact when out of possession. Arsenal need to move the ball quicker and provide more support for Alexandre Lacazette.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

18: Very nervy moment for Arsenal. They think Miguel Almiron is offside but the official keeps his flag down and play continues. Newscastle’s record signing attempts a quick one-two with Rondon but the Gunners get bodies in the way.

15: Just seen a replay of that disallowed goal – Sokratis DID have a hold of the shirt of Florian Lejeune. Saying that, Lejeune was never going to reach it…

13: Referee Anthony Taylor’s just saved a celebrity’s life there.

Aaron Ramsey arrives unmarked at the back post to thump home a well-worked set-piece routine – but it’s disallowed for a Sokratis foul inside the box.

10: Very impressed with how dynamic Alexandre Lacazette has been in the opening ten minutes. He’s literally everywhere right now.

Ritchie’s searching set-piece is hooked clear by Arsenal’s Guendouzi. Lejeune looks to prolong the attack but the defender is unable to keep the ball in play wide on the right.

8: Arsenal looking extremely bright going forward with Alexandre Lacazette buzzing around. Mesut Ozil has is linking up play nicely in behind the Frenchman. Feels like we’ll see a few goals tonight.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

5: Whoosh! Shkodran Mustafi is extremely lucky there. The centre-back slides in recklessly and is lucky that he doesn’t make contact with Matt Ritchie.

Shkodran Mustafi diving in two-footed for no apparent reason – part 30001020

3: Not what you would call a composed start from either side. In fact it has been frantic in the middle of the park with two or three tasty challenges already flying in.

Referee Anthony Taylor could have a job on his hands tonight.

ARSENAL 0-0 NEWCASTLE

1: Ok folks, we’re underway at the Emirates. Arsenal playing to leapfrog Tottenham and Manchester United – Newcastle playing to confirm their Premier League survival.

Game on!

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

Here they come!

19:55: The players are just emerging from the tunnel now. Newcastle ready to go in their black and white stripes – Arsenal wearing nice pre-match matching jackets. Might even be a cardigan actually.

10-minute warning

19:50: Just ten minutes until we’re underway at the Emirates folks. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s temperature must be very mild because he’s been laughing and joking throughout the warm up.

I suspect we’ll see him at some stage this evening.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

Twitter round-up

Anish: What Emery has done so far is nothing short of great but us Arsenal fans need to stop being so fickle and putting him down when results don’t go our way. The way the fans reacted to the Ozil situation was a joke. We need to support him fully because he deserves it

Johnny: What was the point in Arsenal signing Denis Suarez? Just so he can sit on the bench for his entire loan period? Worst signing of the season by a mile. And why Elneny, Mhkitaryan and Aubameyang are on the bench I’ll never know. Sheer arrogance. Hope Rafa wins this!

Errrrr…

19:48: Sky Sports pundit Jamie Carragher has just spent around six minutes defending the linesman for yesterday’s controversial Cardiff vs Chelsea fixture.

The former Liverpool defender used a Virtual Reality headset to show us exactly what the official was looking at.

It was awkward, strange and kind of captivating…

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: GETTY)

Unfoolish

19:45: Arsenal have won all five of their Premier League games on April 1st by an aggregate score of 19-2.

Twitter round-up

Anish: Did Denis Suarez two foot Emery in training or something? What will it take for him to start a game?

Paul: Guys, I’ll just be honest here. This is the weakest squad Unai Emery has ever put together for an especially important match. We should have reason to worry.

Ben: Good team but a bit disappointed to not see Aubameyang starting!!!! Still it’s a very strong team and we should be able to win this game! This game is huge tonight as we could go 3rd in the league with a win! A massive night for The Arsenal!!

Too!! Many!! Exclamation!!! Marks!!!

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: REUTERS)

‘One more win’

19:38: Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez: “We know we have to win maybe just one more game to be safe.

“But if we can’t win the next one, we just have to keep going. I will not put us under pressure. We just need to stay calm and focus on the next game, then see what happens.”

New deal for Danny

19:35: April Fools? Nope. Unai Emery has revealed Arsenal will consider handing Danny Welbeck a new contract.

The 28-year-old broke his right ankle in November’s Europa League draw at home to Sporting Lisbon and his five-year deal will expire in three months.

“He’s progressing very well,” Emery said. “He is working and starting to touch the ball and to work on the pitch. His progress with such a big injury is going very well.

“It’s difficult for him to play matches this season but he is progressing very well and maybe the doctor will tell us he can come train with us in the last weeks of this season.

“After, his individual thing is to speak with the club (about his future).”

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: GETTY)

Weird… just weird

19:30: Just look at those statistics below. Rafa Benitez’s Newcastle side might be the most consistent side of all time.

The Toon have EXACTLY the same points total, wins, draws, losses, goals scored and goals conceded as they did at the same stage last season.

Last season: P31 W9 D8 L14 F31 A 40 GD -9 PTS 35

This season: P31 W9 D8 L14 F31 A 40 GD -9 PTS 35

But that’s not it – look at the stats below and you’ll see just how similar these two campaigns have been. Freaky stuff.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: SKYSPORTS)

Brazilian talent

19:25: Ey Up! I’ve got some transfer news for you Arsenal supporters out there.

Premature? Well only 91 days until the window opens…

Anyway, Arsenal look set to sign Brazilian teenager Gabriel Martinelli.

That’s according to The Sun, who claim negotiations have reached an advanced stage.

Martinelli, 17, had trials with Premier League rivals Manchester United – but reportedly prefers the idea of living in London.

The report claims Arsenal have agreed a £6.5million fee with his club Ituano and will allow the youngster to remain there before linking up with his new side in January 2020.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: TWITTER)

Twitter round-up

Tom: Really surprised to see Henrikh Mkhitaryan is on the bench. He’s been one of our best players recently, I’ll take the positives though, Aubameyang & Mkhitaryan to come off the bench if things aren’t going our way.

Megan: Big game tonight! Line-up is a bit risky with Xhaka and Koscielny missing, but I’m sure we have enough to get the job done. Let’s do this Arsenal. 3rd place is up for grabs here.

Chris: Have Arsenal improved under Emery? Looking at positions hides the full story – win tonight and they’ve already got last season’s points total, with seven fairly favourable fixtures left. Huge improvement!

Where’s Auba?

19:15: I’m hearing that Arsenal striker and everyone’s favourite Fantasy Football player Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is suffering with a ‘slight temperature’.

Not 100 percent what that means – but it could be a fever.

Team News – Newcastle

19:10: Rafa Benitez makes one change to the side who drew 2-2 with Bournemouth courtesy of that banger from Matt Ritchie.

Jamaal Lascelles has recovered from a knee injury to captain the side with Federico Fernandez dropping down to the bench.

Team News – Arsenal

19:05: Unai Emery makes FOUR changes from the Europa League win against Rennes.

Benrd Leno, Sokratis, Matteo Guendouzi and Alex Iwobi all start with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang dropping to the bench.

Granit Xhaka hasn’t recovered from a groin injury picked up during the international break. Lucas Torreira is still suspended.

Aaron Ramsey captains the team. Laurent Koscielny misses out with a bruised left foot.

The line-ups

19:00: The wait is over… Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang on the bench tonight. No Laurent Koscielny.

Arsenal XI: Leno, Maitland-Niles, Sokratis, Mustafi, Monreal, Kolasinac, Guendouzi, Ramsey, Iwobi, Ozil, Lacazette.

Subs: Cech, Elneny, Mkhitaryan, Aubameyang, Suarez, Jenkinson, Nketiah.

Newcastle XI: Dubravka, Yedlin, Lejeune, Lascelles, Dummett, Ritchie, Hayden, Diame, Perez, Almiron, Rondon.

Subs: Darlow, Ki, Shelvey, Muto, Kenedy, Fernandez, Manquillo.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: EPA)

April Fools

18:55: Everyone enjoying April Fools Day? Me neither.

But that hasn’t stopped Premier League clubs from doing it to death this afternoon.

Rhian Brewster was pranked by Andrew Robertson, Joe Gomez and an annoying security guard on his 19th birthday.

Fulham revealed they would become the first Premier League side to print every shirt with two numbers on the back.

Other HILARIOUS things happened but I haven’t the energy to bring those to you. You’re welcome.

Oh, Steve McClaren was also sacked as QPR manager… which I later learned was not an April Fools…

Evening…

18:50: Hello everyone – how are we all feeling today?

Welcome to our LIVE coverage of the Premier League as Arsenal entertain Newcastle at the Emirates Stadium.

Entertain being the key word there.

The Gunners are a different animal when on home turf having scored at least two goals in their last seven league matches at the Emirates.

I guess that goes some way to explaining why Unai Emery’s side have lost only one league game at home this season, winning the last nine in a row.

It’s this form – and Moussa Sissoko’s inability to finish from five-yards – that has seen Arsenal move to within one point of Tottenham and Manchester United.

A win over Newcastle tonight and they move into third place – but Rafa isn’t exactly the type to let that happen so easily…

Let’s see those line-ups.

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Newcastle: Premier League score, goals and updates from the Emirates (Image: GETTY)

ARSENAL vs NEWCASTLE

Arsenal will be without the suspended Lucas Torreira. Aaron Ramsey is expected to be passed fit, having been troubled by his left thigh, as is Nacho Monreal, who has returned to training after hurting his right calf. Granit Xhaka also faces a late fitness test on a muscle injury but striker Danny Welbeck is out with an ankle injury, while knee issues continue to sideline Hector Bellerin and Rob Holding.

Fabian Schar will miss out for Newcastle through suspension. The central defender completes the second game of a two-match ban after reaching 10 bookings for the season, but would almost certainly have sat out anyway after being knocked unconscious in a clash of heads during Switzerland’s 2-0 Euro 2020 qualifying win over Georgia last Saturday. Skipper Jamaal Lascelles has recovered from the knee problem which kept him out of the 2-2 draw at Bournemouth last time out, leaving only Sean Longstaff (knee) on the sidelines.

Last season: Newcastle 2 Arsenal 1, Arsenal 1 Newcastle 0

Last five league matches: Arsenal W W W D W; Newcastle W W L W D

Top scorers (all competitions): Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Arsenal) 22; Salomon Rondon (Newcastle) 10

Referee: Anthony Taylor (Cheshire)

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