Wolves punish woeful Gunners

Arsenal missed the chance to enter the top four in the Premier League following a 3-1 defeat to Wolverhampton Wanderers on Wednesday evening.

The Gunners made wholesale changes from their defeat against Crystal Palace over the weekend, with striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang missing through injury.

The game was lively in the opening exchanges with the Gunners showing positive intent upfront but they lacked the cutting edge.

It took a wonder strike from Ruben Neves to break the deadlock for Wolves in the 28th minute after lining up a rocket from a direct free-kick that left Arsenal goalkeeper Bernd Leno with no chance..

Matt Doherty doubled the lead for Nuno Espirito Santo’s charges eight minutes before the break with a header inside the box following a short-corner that was delivered to the box by Jonny.

Diogo Jota made it 3-0 for the hosts in first-half stoppage time after winning possession inside Arsenal’s half before firing a powerful low shot past Leno.

Wolves were dangerous on counter-attacks in the early stages of the second stanza, but the Gunners were lucky to still be hanging on the game as they were desperately clearing danger.

Unai Emery needed new energy in the game from his troops and made a double substitution on the hour-mark as Henrikh Mkhitaryan made way for Sead Kolasinac while Matteo Guendouzi replaced Lucas Torreira.

However, Sokratis Papastathopoulos pulled a goal back for the Gunners ten minutes before time with a close range header inside the box following a great corner whipped in by Granit Xhaka, 3-1.

Emery’s men had the momentum in the closing stages but mainly through playing long balls forward which that did not help their course as Wolves managed calm down the pace of the match towards the end to see out the victory.

The win takes Wolves up to seventh on the table with 51 points, while Arsenal remain fifth with 66 points, one point shy of the top four position held by Chelsea.

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