Friday, August 11, 2017

Arsenal 4-3 Leicester: Giroud leaves it late on opening day




Olivier Giroud came off the bench power home a late headed winner as Arsenal came from behind to beat Leicester City 4-3 at the Emirates stadium on Friday, escaping a third successive Premier League opening day defeat.
Alexnadre Lacazette opened scoring two minutes after kickoff but Okazaki restored parity three minutes later before Jamie Vardy opened his season's account on the stroke of half time. Danny Welbeck came to the home side's rescue with a close range finish on the cusp of half time after being teed up by Kolasinac to deny the Foxes a half time lead after an eventful opening 45 minutes.

11 minutes after the break, Vardy scored again - this time glancing a header in at the near post from a corner after being allowed to run into space by the watching Xhaka. With the clock winding down, Xhaka's inch-perfect pass found substitute Aaron Ramsey and the Welshman slammed home an angled drive to draw level. But the Gunners were not done yet - this time, Olivier Giroud thumped home a header from a Xhaka corner to hand Arsenal the lead, extending Leicester winless run against Arsenal to 22 games.
SETTING THE SCENE
Fans at the game on the night paid tribute to Bradley Lowery, who passed away over the summer following a strong fight with cancer.
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger made two changes to the Arsenal starting XI from Sunday's Community Shield win against Chelsea. Alex Iwobi was the man to make way for Mesut Ozil, who missed out with an ankle injury.
Summer signing Sead Kolasinac started in a three-man defence instead of Per Mertersacker. Kolasinac replaced the German, who suffered a facial injury, in the first half at Wembley. New £46.5m striker Alexandre Lacazette made his Premier League debut, leading the Gunners' line.
Leicester midfielders Danny Drinkwater and Vicente Iborra were unavailable because of muscle problems, meaning a rare start for Matty James who had not started a Premier League game in two years. Defender Robert Huth was recovering from ankle surgery so was replaced by summer signing Harry Maguire.
Kelechi Iheanacho, a £25m summer signing from Manchester City, was only fit enough to start on the bench.

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