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Saturday, 20 April 2013

Arsenal held to goalless draw with Everton

Arsenal were held to a frustrating 0-0 draw with Everton on Wednesday night as the Gunners missed the chance to extend their lead over Chelsea and Spurs in the race for Champions League football next season. It was a hard fought point for the Gunners, but both sides indeed had chances to win the game and Arsenal will be unhappy not to have taken their chances in such an important game. There were plenty of positives to take from the game though despite the result. Another clean sheet had been kept as Szczesny returned to the side whilst the ever improving Aaron Ramsey earned himself a second man of the match performance in as many games. There were a few changes to the side that had beaten Norwich as Walcott replaced Gervinho and Mertesacker came in for Vermaelen. Rosicky also returned from injury as he was on the bench.
 Giroud missed two great chances that would've won the game for Arsenal
The first chance of the match fell to Everton as the ball was slipped through to Pienaar but he put it over the bar.

Arsenal's first good attempt on goal came from an unlikely source as Gibbs made room for a shot on the edge of the area but it failed to find the target.

Theo Walcott was then to come under some aggression from the Everton players as he was on the end of a nasty tackle from Gibson and was then obstructed by the same player and Pienaar.

Everton were looking the most likely to score and they almost broke the deadlock as Barkley tried curling a shot from range but Szczesny was equal to it.

The best chance of the half fell Arsenal's way though. Ramsey got down the right hand side and then centered the ball brilliantly for Giroud but he somehow slid wide.

Arsenal were to create the first chance of the second half as a good build up led to Cazorla hitting a shot from outside the box which Howard managed to beat away.

Giroud then missed another fairly decent chance as Gibbs did well down the left to then lay off the Frenchman but he fired over from the edge of the box.

Ross Barkely was proving to be a very good player as he then worked off a shot as he had done in the first half. This time though, the ball flew inches wide.

Arsenal then really should have scored as they broke away on the counter with Cazorla who then played in Oxlade-Chamberlain. However instead of shooting, he fired the ball across goal towards Giroud but the defender was in the way to make a crucial interception.

All the chances seemed to be falling to Giroud as he then wasted another one, firing over from a few yards.

The final score finished Arsenal 0-0 Everton.

The teams lineups:

Arsenal: Szczesny, Sagna, Mertesacker, Koscielny, Gibbs(90), Ramsey, Arteta, Wilshere(68), Walcott(68), Walcott(68), Cazorla, Giroud.
Subs: Mannone, Vermaelen, Monreal(90), Rosicky, Oxlade-Chamberlain(68), Gervinho, Podolski(68). 

Everton: Howard, Coleman, Jagielka, Distin, Baines, Barkley(76), Fellaini, Pienaar, Gibson, Mirallas(90), Anichebe(90).
Subs: Mucha, Heitinga, Oviedo(90), Neville, Hitzlesperger, Naismith(90), Jelavic(76). 

My man of the match: Aaron Ramsey

Referee: Neil Swarbrick
Attendance: 60,071

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