Newcastle 0-1 Arsenal: Aleksandar Mitrovic sent off before Fabricio Coloccini own goal
Last Updated: 29/08/15 5:15pm
Arsenal took advantage of Aleksandar Mitrovic's early red card to beat Newcastle 1-0 at St James' Park on Saturday.
The Magpies striker, who had been booked in both his previous Premier League matches, was dismissed after just 16 minutes following a high tackle on Francis Coquelin.
The hosts managed to hold out until half-time but their resistance was broken in the 52nd minute by an own goal as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain's shot deflected in off Fabricio Coloccini.
The goal proved to be decisive as Arsenal dominated possession and never looked in danger of conceding an equaliser.
While Newcastle were applauded for their efforts at the final whistle by their fans, they have now not scored in the league since the opening day of the season and have not had a shot on target since August 15.
Both sides made three changes to their starting line-ups, with Laurent Koscielny returning for Arsenal in defence, Theo Walcott preferred to Olivier Giroud up front and Oxlade-Chamberlain starting ahead of the injured Mesut Ozil.
Opposite number Steve McClaren restored the bulk of the men rested for the midweek Capital One Cup cup tie against Northampton and brought in Daryl Janmaat, Florian Thauvin and Moussa Sissoko.
But his game-plan was ripped apart within 16 minutes when referee Andre Marriner interpreted Mitrovic's challenge on Coquelin as a red-card offence and dismissed him, much to the Serbia international's astonishment.
The official's standing on Tyneside plummeted further when, having already booked Sissoko for a foul on Nacho Monreal, he swiftly added Chancel Mbemba and Thauvin to his collection.
However, he might have angered the locals further had he spotted Thauvin's 13th-minute trip on Hector Bellerin inside the box.
With a numerical advantage, Arsenal dominated possession, but only created two clear chances before half-time, both of which were spurned by Walcott.
The England international was first denied by Tim Krul before firing wastefully wide of the target after the Newcastle keeper could only parry Alexis Sanchez's drive 13 minutes before the break.
But the Netherlands international was finally beaten seven minutes after the restart when Oxlade-Chamberlain fired a shot across goal and it went in off the post, with the help of a deflection off Coloccini.
Krul enjoyed better fortune when he pushed away Sanchez's 58th-minute strike from close-range and then claimed Cazorla's snapshot at the second attempt.
The Magpies repeatedly tried to hit the visitors on the break with midfielder Thauvin attempting to lead the line, but they found themselves largely camped deep inside their own half and Krul had to deny substitute Giroud, Cazorla and Monreal before his day was done.
Newcastle: Krul (7), Janmaat (6), Mbemba (6), Coloccini (6), Haidara (6), Colback (5), Anita (5), Thauvin (5), Wijnaldum (5), Sissoko (6), Mitrovic (3).
Subs: Cisse (5), De Jong (5), Perez (5)
Arsenal: Cech (6), Bellerin (7), Gabriel (6), Koscielny (6), Monreal (6), Coquelin (6), Cazorla (6), Oxlade-Chamberlain (7), Ramsey (6), Sanchez (6), Walcott (5).
Subs: Arteta (5), Giroud (5).
Man of the match: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain