North London derby ends in stalemate


The North London derby ended in a 2-2 stalemate as Arsenal came back from two goals down against Tottenham, to claim a share of the spoils at the Emirates Stadium.

The game got off to a typically frenetic start, a frenzy of passes, tackles and fouls – but Arsenal settled first, with Nicolas Pepe curling a shot just over and Ainsley-Maitland-Niles seeing a goal-bound effort blocked in the area.

But it was the visitors who took the lead as Erik Lamela’s shot from the edge of the area was palmed away by Bern Leno, but only into the path of Christian Eriksen, who tapped home.

The German goalkeeper will have been unhappy with his part in the goal, but went some way to redeeming himself shortly afterwards with a spectacular save to push Heung-min Son’s shot around the post.

Leno also had to be alert to push away an Eriksen free kick, but moments later the visitors were awarded a penalty when Granit Xhaka carelessly took down Son in the area. Harry Kane made no mistake from the spot.

Just before the break, Alex Lacazette fired brilliantly into the roof of the net to give the Gunners a breath of fresh air. That goal changed the whole mood inside the Emirates.

But Tottenham remained a threat on the counter, and they came perilously close to extending their lead when Kane struck the inside of the post from inside the area.

It was breathless, end-to-end stuff and Dani Ceballos soon stepped off the bench, and nearly made an immediate impact, only to see Lloris tip his fierce drive over the bar.

The clock was ticking, but Arsenal kept pushing and probing and finally got rewarded when the impressive Guendouzi charged forward, and picked out Aubameyang in the box, who poked beyond Lloris.

|Arsenal thought they had taken the lead when the ball was bundled in from close range, but it was ruled out after a video review.

Harry Kane was up to his usual theatrics as he tried to steal a penalty off Sokratis, but the referee wasn’t having any of it.

That was the final act of note in a thrilling derby in which Arsenal showed real character, but just couldn’t quite find a winner.