Arsenal beat 10-man Bolton
Arsenal maintained their unbeaten run this season after recording a 4-1 win over 10-man Bolton at the Emirates.
By James Riach
Last Updated: 11/09/10 5:37pm
Arsenal maintained their unbeaten run in the Premier League this season after recording a 4-1 win over 10-man Bolton at the Emirates.
Defender Laurent Koscielny bagged his first goal for the club in the 24th minute to open the scoring, bundling the ball over the line from close range but the home side could not put the game to bed before the break.
The Trotters pulled level just before half-time as Johan Elmander nodded in after a disastrous back header from Koscielny gifted Lee Chung-Yong possession.
But Arsenal retook the lead in the 58th minute when Marouane Chamakh latched on to a Cesc Fabregas pass to finish with aplomb, before Gary Cahill was controversially sent off for a challenge on the Moroccan - receiving a straight red card.
It was all Arsenal from thereon in and they put gloss on the result as Alex Song and substitute Carlos Vela both got on the scoresheet in the latter stages.
As expected, the home side made all the early running, with captain Fabregas, who has a fine personal record against Bolton, having a shot blocked after cutting into the right side of the area.
Andrey Arshavin should have made it 1-0 after latching onto a brilliant through ball by Tomas Rosicky, but Bolton goalkeeper Adam Bogdan - making his first Premier League start in place of the suspended Jussi Jaaskelainen - was out quickly to close the Russian down at the edge of the penalty area.
The Czech midfielder then had a go himself, driving an angled shot just over as Arsenal continued to press.
Bolton - who now play a much-changed style under Owen Coyle - found an opening on 12 minutes when a knockdown by former Gunner Fabrice Muamba fell to Kevin Davies, but the striker's shot on the turn was held by Manuel Almunia.
The Gunners were ahead after 24 minutes. Jack Wilshere's angled chip across the penalty area picked out Fabregas' run at the far post, and his cutback was bundled in by Koscielny following a rebound from Bogdan.
The Hungarian was being kept busy, as a fine passing move ended with Rosicky drilling in a low, angled shot which produced another fine reaction block from the Bolton shot-stopper.
Arshavin clipped the side-netting after he just got ahead of Zat Knight before he was again denied on the breakaway, as this time Gretar Steinsson did just enough to put the Russian off balance.
Bolton snatched an equaliser just before half-time following a terrible mix-up in the Arsenal defence.
Koscielny's backward header was far too soft, leaving Almunia exposed as Lee Chung-yong darted onto the loose ball.
The Korean rounded the goalkeeper, before chipping back across goal, where Elmander headed in at the far post.
The tempo was lacklustre during the opening exchanges of the second half, as both sides knew the next goal would be crucial.
Song hacked away a loose ball in the Arsenal six-yard box before Chamakh burst clear to the edge of the Bolton box, but again Bogdan produced a superb save.
However, there was little the Bolton goalkeeper could do moments later when, as the danger was not cleared after the resulting corner, Morocco international striker Chamakh headed in Fabregas' cross at the far post to restore Arsenal's lead after 58 minutes.
Koscielny and Davies, jumping in at full pelt, both needed treatment after a nasty clash of heads as they challenged for a ball on the edge of the Arsenal penalty area.
Despite calls for action from referee Attwell, it was Emmanuel Eboue who ended up in the book for protesting.
The Nuneaton official - who famously allowed a "ghost goal" during a match between Watford and Reading two years ago - then missed what looked liked a foul by Kieran Gibbs on Lee at the edge of the Arsenal box.
Moments later, the 27-year-old official did reach for his back pocket, this time to show Cahill a straight red card after the England international went through the back of Chamakh right in front of the dugout.
The match suddenly developed an edge, as a few hefty challenges went in from sides, Arsenal substitute Abou Diaby eventually had to be replaced after suffering an injury in a clash with Paul Robinson.Song made it 3-1 when he collected a cutback from Arshavin to cleverly chip the goalkeeper from a tight angle, before substitute Vela stroked in number four with seven minutes left - and Eboue was denied what looked a penalty when tripped by Muamba.
|Arsenal||Team Statistics||Bolton Wanderers|
|1||1st Half Goals||1|
|10||Shots on Target||4|
|8||Shots off Target||1|