Alexis Sanchez continued his goalscoring run of form, but Gylfi Sigurdsson grabbed the headlines with a thumping free kick as Swansea leveled with 15 minutes to go, and Bafetimbi Gomis earned all three points just a minute after coming off the bench.
The three points were deserved by the home side, who were dominant throughout the first half without earning anything from it. While Arsenal was dangerous on the counter, there was always a concern about its back line that featured Nacho Monreal deputizing next to Per Mertesacker
Swansea looked quite bright to start the match, showing both confidence and organization in defense while also owning possession and looking dangerous up front in the opening 20 minutes.
It appeared the hosts had a clear penalty shout just past the 20-minute mark but referee Phil Dowd said no despite Calum Chambers clattering into the back of Wilfried Bony while receiving a cross into the middle of the box. They continued to pummel the Arsenal box, but couldn’t find the final ball.
Finally Arsenal grew into the match a half-hour in, but Swansea then became dangerous on the counter. On 35 minutes Jefferson Montero dispossessed Chambers and Bony found Marvin Emnes trailing the play but his low shot was right at Wojciech Szczesny.
Arsenal should have gone ahead just before the halftime despite dealing with Swansea for most of the first 45. A number of Gunners could have had a shot from the edge of the box, but instead it was worked around to Danny Welbeck from point blank range in front of the post but Lukasz Fabianski was strong to deny the England international. Just moments later Swansea couldn’t clear, and Aaron Ramsey ripped a wobbling volley just inches wide of the post.
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As the rain picked up in the second half and it edged on monsoon status at the Liberty Stadium, the two teams began to get physical, but as it continued to pour, things opened up on the wet pitch. Arsenal broke in the 63rd minute, and Danny Welbeck’s cutback in the box found Alexis Sanchez wide open in the middle of the box. The in-form Chilean couldn’t miss, and he buried his eighth goal of the season to give Arsenal a 1-0 lead.
Swansea nearly hit back straight away as Jefferson Montero beat Calum Chambers down the left, and his cutback found Bony unmarked in the box, but he scuffed the first-time shot and it went harmlessly wide.
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A prospect of both teams making it out of the match with all 11 men continued to lessen, as Phil Dowd drew card after card. With substitute Modou Barrow’s great run on 74 minutes drawing a foul by Kieran Gibbs, eight cards had been shown to that point. The ensuing free kick was Swansea’s moment to equalize.
An absolute howitzer off the foot of Gylfi Sigurdsson splashed the top corner of Szczesny’s net, and Swansea were back on level terms as Garry Monk pumped his fist emphatically on the sidelines. It was just the beginning. Moments later Montero again beat Chambers down the left, and his searching cross found the head of Bafetimbi Gomis who had just come on a minute earlier, and Swansea were suddenly ahead after trailing just three minutes prior.
The rain didn’t let up and neither did Swansea, and Arsenal went down with little fight. Instead of the three points Arsenal appeared to be headed towards that would have sent them into the top four, it’s Swansea who go above the Gunners into fifth place, even with West Ham in fourth.
Swansea: Fabianski; Rangel, Bartley, Williams, Taylor; Ki, Carroll (Britton 87′), Sigurdsson, Emnes (Barrow 67′), Montero; Bony (Gomis 76′).
Goals: Sigurdsson 75′, Gomis 78′
Arsenal: Szczesny; Chambers, Mertesacker, Monreal, Gibbs; Flamini (Wilshere 79′), Oxlade-Chamberlain, Ramsey (Walcott 79′), Alexis, Cazorla; Welbeck (Sanogo 90’+1).
Goals: Sanchez 63′