A thrilling encounter unfolded at Old Trafford on a chilly winter night. With his 800th goal ‘Mr Inevitable’ Cristiano Ronaldo secured the victory from the jaws of defeat as Ralf Ragnick witnessed the whole encounter from the stands. A 3-2 scoreline is not enough to reflect Arsenal’s dominance over the course of the game. Even a draw would have given them some hope and surety with the upcoming hectic schedule of fixtures. However, a defeat only rubs salt on their wounds. Smith Rowe and Odegaard featured on the scoresheet for the Gunners. The main issue for Arteta and Arsenal, the main issue which exists in front of the goal, is Aubameyang's goal drought. The Gabonese are chasing the shadow of his past self.
As it happened
Arsenal started the game brightly forcing out a few saves from the Spanish veteran goalkeeper David De Gea. On the 13th minute mark, Smith Rowe opened the scoresheet following a corner kick. The young English midfielder simply placed the ball into the back of the net. As De Gea lay still on the ground Man United players surrounded Martin Atkinson with the voice of their protests. VAR was called into action as the video clearly showed that De Gea stumbled on his teammate (Fred). Moments before the halftime whistle Bruno came in to score the equaliser after Fred played the ball right in his path.
The Red Devils started the second half with more urgency. In the 52nd minute of the game, Cristiano Ronaldo in the most subtle manner placed the ball in the bottom left corner. Just like a reflex Arsenal squared the game with the Norwegian Martin Odegaard within 2 minutes. The game was in a phase when two boxers let their guards down and start to land punches right in the teeth.
With the game reaching its climax Fred made a sharp run in the box only to find a mistimed tackle from Odegaard. The Portuguese showstopper stepped up to take the penalty kick to complete his fairy tale. The landmark 800th goal was enough to seal off the game as Old Trafford erupted with the chants of Siu.
The thing to look back for Arsenal and Manchester United
Arsenal is not the same team that started out the season with three defeats. They have more character; they enjoy more dominance by controlling the ball in their opponent’s half. As English football approaches its halfway mark Arsenal can still eye that number five or four position.
For Man United, their reign under Michael Carrick is now over as he announced his departure after the game. Ralf Ragnick will now step up in the shoes of management. He has to fill a big hole that was left the moment Sir Alex Ferguson retired. He has a short amount of time in his hands to turn the tables around in Man United’s fortune.
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