Arsenal rallied to defeat local rival Tottenham 5-2 yesterday in English soccer’s Premier League, while Ryan Giggs scored a late winner at Norwich on his 900th appearance for Manchester United.
The Gunners trailed by two goals after 34 minutes at the Emirates Stadium in north London, but efforts from Bacary Sagna and Robin van Persie saw them level at halftime. Tomas Rosicky then put the Gunners ahead, with Theo Walcott adding two goals.
“It was a performance full of everything you want from your team,” Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger told Sky Sports. “It was an exciting game, we had a difficult start but kept going and showed great character.”
The win lifts Arsenal above Chelsea into fourth spot because it has scored more goals. Both have the same goal difference.
United needed a 90th-minute goal from Giggs to secure a 2-1 win at Norwich and maintain pressure on league leader Manchester City. Paul Scholes also scored for the defending champion at Carrow Road, with Grant Holt replying for the hosts.
“Norwich put up a great fight but we didn’t really play very well,” Giggs told the British Broadcasting Corp. “But I think if you look at the last 10 minutes, we probably just deserved it.”
City has 63 points, two ahead of United, with Tottenham remaining on 53 points. Arsenal and Chelsea have 46 points.
Stoke City beat Swansea City 2-0 in yesterday’s other match.
Spurs took only four minutes to take the lead at the Emirates, with Louis Saha scoring his third goal for the club since joining from Everton last month.
Former Arsenal forward Emmanuel Adebayor slid the ball through the home team’s defense and Saha scored from a shot which deflected off defender Thomas Vermaelen and over goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny.
Van Persie missed an opportunity to tie the game when he fired wide after 20 minutes, then goalkeeper Brad Friedel tipped over a header from Rosicky.
The visitor’s second goal came from a penalty kick after Szczesny was adjudged to have fouled Gareth Bale. Adebayor scored to make it 2-0.
Bale had an effort saved by Szczesny as he looked to increase the lead, then Van Persie hit a post at the other end of the field with Sagna heading into the net moments later. Van Persie scored after 43 minutes from the edge of the area.
Six minutes after halftime, Rosicky got his first goal of the season before Walcott completed the turnaround with two strikes. Walcott clipped his first over Friedel, then struck a low shot into the bottom corner.
Tottenham, which came into the game on a three-match unbeaten run in the league, finished with 10 men after Scott Parker was shown a second yellow card late on.
“Even at 2-0 I couldn’t say I felt over-comfortable,” Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp told Sky Sports. “We didn’t defend well. It was basic, really.”
Giggs scored from close range late on to extend United’s unbeaten league run to six games.
Norwich looked to have earned a point when Holt fired past David de Gea on 83 minutes, with United striker Danny Welbeck then missing a close-range header.
Scholes had given the visitors an early lead with a header from a cross by Nani, his second goal since returning to the team in January after reversing his decision to retire.
“It was more about the result than the performance,” Giggs said.
Matthew Upson and Peter Crouch got first half goals for Stoke as it beat Swansea at the Britannia Stadium. Stoke climbs to 12th, while Swansea is 14th.
Two days ago, Man City beat Blackburn 3-0, Chelsea defeated Bolton 3-0, Wolverhampton Wanderers tied 2-2 at Newcastle, while West Bromwich Albion won 4-0 against Sunderland. Fulham beat Queens Park Rangers 1-0, and the match between Wigan and Aston Villa was 0-0.
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