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Player ratings as Gunners cruise to north London derby victory

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Arsenal extended their lead at the top of the Premier League table with a comfortable 3-1 victory over north London rivals Tottenham on Saturday.

Thomas Partey’s long-range strike opened the scoring but Harry Kane’s penalty tied things up at the break. Gabriel Jesus soon restored Arsenal’s lead after the interval and, after Emerson Royal was sent off, Granit Xhaka’s strike eventually secured all three points.

Arsenal began the game on top and nearly had an opener inside just a few minutes as Gabriel Martinelli’s fierce half-volley was tipped on to the outside of Hugo Lloris’ post.

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The Gunners’ pressure was relentless but, against the run of play, Spurs nearly took the lead as Richarlison poked goalward from a free-kick and drew an impressive reflex save from Aaron Ramsdale.

Down the other end, Xhaka’s low drive fizzed agonisingly wide of Lloris’ far post, before Partey unleashed a screamer from range to curl the ball into the top corner and draw first blood.

Spurs responded fairly well and, just before the half-hour mark, were awarded a penalty as Richarlison was tripped by Gabriel, and up stepped Kane to tie things back up.

The goal evidently galvanised Spurs and they nearly had a second after a nice piece of play ended with Kane at the back post, but Ramsdale was equal to the effort.

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It was all square at half-time but Arsenal nearly snuck ahead through Jesus, who combined well with Martin Odegaard in the box and saw his effort well blocked by Lloris.

Like the first half, Arsenal came out hot and they needed just four minutes to get ahead this time. Bukayo Saka’s strike was spilled by Lloris and Jesus did superbly well to force his way in front of Cristian Romero to bundle the ball over the line.

Jesus should have had a second almost immediately after as he sent an unmarked header wide of Lloris’ goal under very little pressure.

Spurs did try their best to get back into the game but their case was harmed by a red card shown to Emerson on the hour mark. The Brazilian caught Martinelli high on the ankle with a challenge that didn’t immediately look like a red, but VAR had no issues upholding the decision and off he went.

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Xhaka killed the game off just moments later as he drove home from close range, handing Arsenal an unsurmountable lead.

They continued to push for more but Spurs opted for damage limitation and sat deep to try and avoid any further issues, allowing the Gunners to cruise to a massive victory.

Gabriel Jesus

Jesus bundled home / Catherine Ivill/GettyImages

GK: Aaron Ramsdale – 5/10 – A nice save to stop Richarlison early on but looked a little uncertain after that. Played by Kane for the penalty.

RB: Ben White – 6/10 – An awkward first half but a minor tactical switch saw White improve after the break. Impactful at both ends of the field.

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CB: William Saliba – 7/10 – Had enough composure to go around. Regularly made the right decision and never let his team down.

CB: Gabriel – 6/10 – Another impactful mistake as he gave away the penalty. Did a decent job of bouncing back from that though.

LB: Oleksandr Zinchenko – 5/10 – The stats were kind to him but the eye test was not. Zinchenko was caught out of position a lot in the first half. Looked a little rusty on his return from injury.

DM: Thomas Partey – 7/10 – A glorious goal to open the scoring. His love of a long-range strike finally paid off.

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DM: Granit Xhaka – 7/10 – A little sloppy in the first half but really stepped it up after the break. A nice goal.

RM: Bukayo Saka – 6/10 – Felt a little isolated at times but put in a real shift at both ends of the field. Made an impact when he finally got away from his defenders.

AM: Martin Odegaard – 5/10 – Couldn’t get on the ball as much as he would have liked.

LM: Gabriel Martinelli – 7/10 – Some really nice dribbling and caused havoc whenever he ran at Spurs’ back line.

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ST: Gabriel Jesus – 7/10 – A massive threat up against Spurs’ back line, and deserved the goal he ended up with.

SUB: Albert Sambi Lokonga (73′ for Partey) – 6/10 – Played with refreshing confidence.

SUB: Kieran Tierney (73′ for Zinchenko) – 6/10 – Enjoyed his cameo as an inverted full-back.

SUB: Fabio Vieira (80′ for Odegaard) – N/A

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SUB: Eddie Nketiah (80′ for Jesus) – N/A

SUB: Takehiro Tomiyasu (89′ for White) – N/A

Manager: Mikel Arteta – 7/10 – Struggled to find a way through Spurs’ stubborn defence in the first half but figured out how to free up Saka at half-time and reaped the rewards.

Anthony Taylor, Emerson Royal, Richarlison

Emerson was given his marching orders / Shaun Botterill/GettyImages

GK: Hugo Lloris – 4/10 – A couple of nice saves to go along with some absolutely honking passes. Really poor for the second goal as well.

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CB: Cristian Romero – 5/10 – Incredibly fortunate not to get booked in the first half. Didn’t cover himself in glory for the second goal either.

CB: Eric Dier – 5/10 – Kept his composure up against the two Gabriels but lost it immediately after the red card.

CB: Clement Lenglet – 6/10 – His job was to neutralise Saka and he did a decent job of that.

RM: Emerson Royal – 1/10 – Was having a rotter even before he was shown a red card on the hour mark for a nasty challenge. Might have already spent £1m to get better this season but probably needs to spend another £1m.

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CM: Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg – 4/10 – Lost his battle against Partey. Didn’t look comfortable at either end of the pitch.

CM: Rodrigo Bentancur – 6/10 – Another solid performance from Bentancur. Marshalled the midfield well and made a significant impact yet again.

LM: Ivan Perisic – 5/10 – Did a good job on Saka in the first half and then didn’t do a good job on Saka in the second half.

AM: Richarlison – 5/10 – Felt like he wanted to play too centrally. Couldn’t get in the game that much.

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AM: Son Heung-min – 6/10 – A nice threat on the counter but found it hard to get as many touches as he would have liked.

ST: Harry Kane – 7/10 – Took his penalty well and played some really nice passes when he did get the chance.

SUB: Davinson Sanchez (71′ for Lenglet) – 6/10 – Did a decent job but the game was already gone by this point.

SUB: Yves Bissouma (71′ for Perisic) – 6/10 – His presence alone helped in the midfield battle.

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SUB: Ryan Sessegnon (71′ for Richarlison ) – 5/10 – Got very few opportunities to do anything.

SUB: Matt Doherty (71′ for Son) – 6/10 – Actually not that bad.

SUB: Oliver Skipp (75′ for Hojbjerg) – 4/10 – Could hardly get on the ball but that was almost certainly because of the numerical deficit.

Manager: Antonio Conte – 4/10 – Spurs’ midfield two struggled against Arsenal when Zinchenko and Tierney came inside but the boss didn’t act until it was too late. Bringing Bissouma on earlier may have changed things.

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Player of the Match – Gabriel Jesus



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EPL

Man City face Chelsea; Man Utd host Everton

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Chelsea will travel to Manchester City in the headline fixture of the 2022/23 FA Cup thid round draw.

The two sides clashed recently at the same stage of the Carabao Cup, with City coming out on top 2-0 courtesy of goals from Rihad Mahrez and Julian Alvarez, and they’ll hope to replicate that in the next domestic competition.

Elsewhere, Manchester United’s quest for silverware kicks off with a visit from Everton, while Liverpool have their own all-Premier League affair to contend with as they prepare to host Wolves

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Arsenal face a trip to League One’s Oxford United, while Tottenham are braced for a Harry Redknapp derby against Portsmouth.



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Conor Coady responds to ‘daft’ question about Liverpool allegiance

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Conor Coady has told England teammate Jordan Henderson to do better in his goading after the Liverpool captain taunted him over his Everton connection.

Coady was a product of the Liverpool youth system and made a solitary appearance for his boyhood club in the 2012 Europa League. He has since moved on to Huddersfield Town and Wolves before joining Liverpool’s Merseyside rivals Everton on loan last summer.

Speaking on the latest episode of Lion’s Den from England’s World Cup camp, though, Henderson could not resist trying to wind up Coady by quizzing him on his allegiances.

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“Conor, we are all England here,” Henderson said. “But what I really want to know is: are you blue or red?”

Henderson then started laughing, which prompted a similar response from Coady, who appeared both irritated and amused by the question.

“It’s so poor from him,” Coady said while smiling. “We have banter all the time. Of course, I am playing for Everton. He knows deep down.

Harry Symeou hosts Scott Saunders and Toby Cudworth to look back on South Korea/Japan ’02 as part of the ‘Our World Cup’ series. We take a trip down memory lane – join us!

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If you can’t see the podcast embed, click here to download or listen to the episode in full!

“So, for him to come out there and ask that question is daft. Of course, I am blue. Of course, I am blue, without a shadow of a doubt.

“For him to say that…you know what I am going to go back there sit down and have a coffee with him. I will give him a bit. That’s nowhere near good enough from the big fella. Blue all day long.”

Everton have a clause allowing them to sign Coady permanently from Wolves this summer for a fee of just £4.5m.

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Club director leaves door open to Chelsea transfer in January

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Dynamo Moscow director Dmitry Gafin has admitted young midfielder Arsen Zakharyan could seal his move to Chelsea in January.

The Blues attempted to sign the 19-year-old during the summer transfer window but complexities involved in dealing with a Russian club left them unable to complete a deal for Zakharyan before the window closed.

Since then, sources have informed 90min that Chelsea have not given up on Zakharyan, who comes with a release clause of around £12.6m, and have remained in contact with all relevant authorities in an attempt to conclude a transfer.

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Talks have been held between Chelsea and FIFA, UEFA and the Premier League to try and find a way to work within the current rules regarding dealing with Russian clubs, with Blues co-owner Todd Boehly still very keen to get a deal done.

Harry Symeou hosts Scott Saunders and Toby Cudworth to look back on South Korea/Japan ’02 as part of the ‘Our World Cup’ series. We take a trip down memory lane – join us!

If you can’t see the podcast embed, click here to download or listen to the episode in full!

In Moscow, club director Gafin has conceded that talks with Chelsea could reignite in January.

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“We cannot rule out the resumption of history with Chelsea in winter, I cannot comment on the information that appears and will appear,” he told TASS.

Gafin was, however, quick to question claims that Zakharyan has already agreed personal terms with Chelsea, insisting Dynamo Moscow have not given the club permission to speak with the Russia international just yet.

“Regarding his alleged contract with Chelsea, we don’t know anything about this, we did not give permission for such contacts,” he said. “I think this is from the rumour mill.”



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