Full Time After Extra Time This is a live match. Extra Time Half Time

Bournemouth vs Arsenal. Premier League.

Vitality StadiumAttendance10,234.

Bournemouth 1

  • D Gosling (35th minute)

Arsenal 1

  • P Aubameyang (63rd minute)

Bournemouth 1-1 Arsenal: Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang rescues point for Mikel Arteta's side

Report and highlights as the Mikel Arteta era at Arsenal starts with a point

Thursday 26 December 2019 22:11, UK

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Bournemouth hold Arteta’s Arsenal

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's second-half strike rescued a point for Arsenal as Mikel Arteta’s first game in charge ended in a 1-1 draw at Bournemouth.

Dan Gosling put Bournemouth in front in the 35th minute but the Gunners fought back after the break as Aubameyang's 12th Premier League goal of the season (63) ensured Arteta avoided defeat in his first match as a head coach.

There were some encouraging signs for Arsenal, who dominated possession for long spells on the south coast, and their new head coach, but they were unable to grab a winner as both sides took away a point.

Mikel Arteta during Bournemouth vs Arsenal at the Vitality Stadium
Image: Mikel Arteta during Bournemouth vs Arsenal at the Vitality Stadium

The draw sees the Gunners stay 11th, eight points behind fourth-placed Chelsea - who they face live on Sky Sports on Super Sunday - while Bournemouth, who had a late Callum Wilson strike correctly ruled out for offside, drop to 15th despite the point.

Live Renault Super Sunday

How Bournemouth denied Arteta winning start

After watching his side's goalless draw at Everton from the stands last weekend, Arteta was a conspicuous figure in the dugout on his first outing as a head coach.

The Spaniard would have been looking for a bright start from his side but it was Bournemouth who created the first opening of the game with Wilson playing in Fraser, who saw his low drive blocked by Bernd Leno.

Player ratings

Bournemouth: Ramsdale (7), Stacey (7), S Cook (7), Mepham (6), Simpson (6), Fraser (7), L Cook (6), Lerma (7), Gosling (7), King (8), C Wilson (6).

Subs: H Wilson (6), Billing (6).

Arsenal: Leno (7), Maitland-Niles (7), Sokratis (6), Luiz (7), Saka (6), Torreira (7), Xhaka (7), Nelson (6), Ozil (8), Aubameyang (7), Lacazette (6).

Subs: Willock (6), Mustafi (n/a), Pepe (n/a).

Man of the match: Mesut Ozil.

Arsenal grew into the game and Mesut Ozil, recalled by Arteta following the German's absence at Everton, was finding pockets of space, creating a shooting opportunity for Alexandre Lacazette, who scooped the ball high over Aaron Ramsdale's crossbar.

More on this story

Mesut Ozil in action at the Vitality Stadium
Image: Mesut Ozil in action at the Vitality Stadium

Minutes later, the ball dropped invitingly for Aubameyang in the penalty area but a combination of Steve Cook and Stacey blocked the Arsenal captain's goal-bound effort.

Arsenal were dominating the ball, but theyfound themselves behind 10 minutes before the interval after gifting the hosts possession when trying to play out from the back. Wilson played in Jack Stacey on the overlap and the full-back cut the ball back for Gosling, who showed great determination to get to the ball at the near post to poke home past Leno.

Dan Gosling celebrates his goal against Arsenal
Image: Dan Gosling celebrates his goal against Arsenal

Arteta's half-time team talk was almost made even more difficult when Joshua King nearly squeezed the ball past Leno at his near post following a powerful surge down the left-wing.

Arteta resisted making any changes at the break and he was rewarded in the 63rd minute when the Gunners leveled with their first shot on target. Reiss Nelson's strike from the edge of the penalty area was deflected into the path of Aubameyang, who made no mistake in finding the bottom left corner to score his 14th goal of the campaign in all competitions.

It was a well-deserved equaliser for the visitors, who dominated possession for long periods at the Vitality Stadium and they would have completed the turnaround with a quick second had Lacazette been able to finish when played through on goal by David Luiz.

Team news

Mikel Arteta selected Mesut Ozil for his first game as Arsenal boss as he made three changes at Bournemouth. Ozil, who became a peripheral figure under Arteta's predecessor Unai Emery, came into the team which drew 0-0 at Everton alongside Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Alexandre Lacazette. Defender Calum Chambers and forward Gabriel Martinelli missed out because of suspension and injury respectively, while Emile Smith Rowe dropped to the bench.

Steve Cook returned to captain Bournemouth as Eddie Howe also made three changes. Cook, available again after a wrist problem, was recalled along with fellow defender Jack Simpson and striker Callum Wilson, with regular skipper Simon Francis injured, Diego Rico suspended, and Philip Billing named among the substitutes.

Bournemouth thought they had sealed all three points when Wilson had the ball in the net with nine minutes remaining, although it was correctly ruled out for offside after Leno saved Harry Wilson's initial shot.

Arsenal had one final chance in added time to snatch a win under Arteta at the first time of asking through substitute Joe Willock, but his low effort was easily saved by Ramsdale, leaving Arteta with plenty to think about ahead of games against Chelsea and Manchester United.

Small steps for Arteta's Arsenal

Mikel Arteta during Bournemouth vs Arsenal at the Vitality Stadium
Image: Arteta during Bournemouth vs Arsenal at the Vitality Stadium

Analysis from Sky Sports' Oliver Yew…

It wasn't the result Mikel Arteta would have wanted from his first game as Arsenal head coach, but there were promising signs for the Gunners and their Spanish head coach during their 1-1 draw with Bournemouth.

Firstly, the balance of the Gunners' midfield looked better with solid performances from Lucas Torreira and Granit Xhaka, while Mesut Ozil also produced a promising display, starting in the No 10 position.

Arsenal had more shots in this game (17) than they did in their previous two Premier League games combined (12 – six each vs Everton and Manchester City).

Secondly, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang continued his excellent scoring run to rescue Arsenal's point. The Arsenal captain has now scored 11 of Arsenal's last 16 away league goals, including seven of their last nine on the road in the Premier League. He's scored 12 goals in the Premier League so far this season and 14 in all competitions.

Finally, Arsenal, who have now won 11 points from losing positions in the Premier League this season - more than any other side - showed plenty of fight and character to respond to Dan Gosling's first-half strike.

Mikel Arteta
Image: Arteta gives instructions to Joe Willock

On the other hand, there were signs of the task of the job facing Arteta in north London. Some of his players are struggling for confidence at the moment and top of that list is Alexandre Lacazette, who produced a number of poor finishes at Bournemouth. The final ball from Arsenal's wide players was also lacking, while their failure to keep a clean sheet will still be a cause for concern for Arteta and his coaching staff.

However, it is still very small steps for Arteta's Arsenal, who will have much sterner tests to come in the shape of Chelsea, live on Sky Sports on Super Sunday, next and Manchester United on New Year's Day. We will surely get a much clearer view of the job facing Arteta and the changes he is trying to bring in, in the next week or so, but it's a positive first small step for the new head coach at the Emirates.

Image: Arteta thanks the away fans at full-time

What the managers said…

Arsenal head coach Mikel Arteta: "I am pleased with a lot of things I have seen today and a lot of things we practised that happened today. I am not happy we have not won the game but happy overall.

"It's part of the process to learn when it's time and when it's not. In terms of attitude, desire and commitment it was better than I expect. They are not used to playing at this rhythm.

"I am still learning about the players, about the priorities to make them more secure when they jump on to the pitch. My only aim now is to find solutions, to attack better, defend better, I don't look at the games, the urgency, the impact, needs to be now."

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta
Image: Arteta's first game as a head coach ended in a draw

Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe: "I thought the players gave everything to win the match. It was one of those games that ultimately could have gone either way at the end - they had chances, we had chances. But I think we'll take the point and then try and build on it.

"We didn't quite know what to expect, we assumed that the philosophy would change and it did. It was quite visible to see Arsenal playing a slightly different way. The system was different but we couldn't plan for that, we had no idea really what they were going to do. We had to plan for us and make sure we were better than we were against Burnley [a 1-0 loss on Saturday] and learnt from that experience, and I thought we did. That's why I'm very pleased with my players."

Man of the Match - Mesut Ozil

Image: Arteta recalled Ozil to his starting line-up at Bournemouth

Recalled to the Gunners' starting line-up by Arteta after missing the 0-0 draw with Everton, the German put in an improved display at the Vitality Stadium.

He showed an improved work-rate and he created a number of chances for his side, which on another day would have resulted in goals had the finishing been better.

It was a performance that impressed his new head coach.

"To be fair his attitude in training since the day that I walked in the building has been incredible," Arteta said.

"I've seen this. I've said that I was going to give a clean slate to everybody and it was fair to give it to him. When we did the game preparation and were watching the opponents, where we could hurt them, we believed that he could be a key point.

"We prepared the game like this with him. He responded, did what he had to do, and we could've scored two or three goals from his balls through. I think he played really well. He worked and could have been the difference. The final product wasn't what we wanted."

Opta stats - Auba strikes again for Arsenal

  • Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has scored 73 per cent of Arsenal's away Premier League goals this season (8/11).
  • Arsenal have won 11 points from losing positions in the Premier League this season - no side has won more.
  • Arsenal had more shots in this game (17) than they did in their previous two Premier League games combined (12 - six each vs Everton and Manchester City).
  • Bournemouth have scored just three goals in their last six Premier League home games, and never more than once in a match in that time.

What's next?

Arsenal take on Chelsea at the Emirates Stadium on Renault Super Sunday; kick-off at 2pm, live on Sky Sports Premier League.

Meanwhile, Bournemouth face Brighton at the Amex on Saturday lunchtime, with that match also live on Sky Sports Premier League; kick-off 12.30pm.

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