Don’t press the panic button just yet! After coming off a very convincing win against Fenerbahce to put them in the driver’s seat to advance to the Champions League group stages, Arsenal came out and beat Fulham, 3-1, for their first three points earned this Barclay’s Premier season.
What started out as a very rainy day at Craven Cottage turned out to be a very bright day for Arsenal. Arsenal opened the scoring in 14th min., Ramsey received a pass from Cazorla in space and took a shot on goal. The ball happened to fall at Giroud’s feet and he finished the opportunity by chipping the ball past Stockdale.
Fulham began to threaten afterwards. In the 16th min., Taarabt took a shot on goal which was saved by Szczesny. Off the rebound, Duff took another shot on goal which Szczesny saved again. Huge double save by Szczesny to prevent Fulham from tying the game.
In the 40th min., Arsenal hits Fulham on the counter attack to increase the lead to 2-0. Cazorla provided the pass out wide to Walcott, who took a shot on goal. Stockdale saved it and the rebound fell into the path of Podolski, who finished it with power. Podolski completed his brace in the 68th min. off of another counter attack with the assist provided by Cazorla.
Fulham was able to pull back a goal in the 77th min. off a Berbatov cross which was finished by Bent. Szczesny was able to get his fingertips to the cross but it wasn’t enough to seriously alter the path of the ball.
Man of the Match: Cazorla. He was given a free roaming role and was able to create many chances while on the ball. He was able to find players in space and played a role in all three goals scored by Arsenal.
Special Mention: Ramsey. A player who’s been often criticized by Arsenal supporters in the past, really seems to be coming into his own as of late. Despite losing possession a few times against Fulham, he did a very good job of playing in front of the back four and being an outlet between defense and attack. He has also proven to be effective going forward, if necessary.
Arsenal has proven their class against Fenerbahce and Fulham but reinforcements need to be made if Arsenal is to seriously challenge for silverware this season. Arsenal’s starting eleven is good enough, but depth is needed in case of injury. The transfer window isn’t over yet and Arsenal supporters should fully expect Wenger to bring in two or three players before the transfer window closes.
It was also Wilshire’s 100th appearance for Arsenal.