Arsenal 2-0 Bournemouth: Ozil gets Gunners back on track

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  • Gunners top of the table
  • Ozil with goal and assist
  • Cech gets record 170th clean sheet

After an uninspired defeat to Southampton on Boxing Day, Arsenal got back on track with a solid performance against Bournemouth on Monday, leaving the Emirates with all three points after a 2-0 win.

The win saw Petr Cech get his 170th clean sheet, the most ever by a Premier League goalkeeper.

Mesut Ozil put in another brilliant display, grabbing a goal and an assist as the Gunners now sit top of the table, one point ahead of Leicester City. Leicester has one game in hand.

[ RELATED: Watch full match replays ]

Aresene Wenger made four changes to his side that lost to Southampton, one key move being Gabriel coming into the defense for Laurent Koscielny.

Those changes paid off, as Gabriel put Arsenal ahead in the 27th minute. Mesut Ozil’s corner kick found the head of Gabriel, who took advantage of some poor defending from Bournemouth to walk past his mark and head home from close range. It was the Brazilian’s first goal for the Gunners, and Ozil’s 16th assist of the season.

[ RELATED: Latest Premier League standings ]

Arsenal should have scored off another corner, as it was Ozil to Gabriel again. Gabriel’s header hit the post and redirected off the face of an unsuspecting Per Mertesacker, who had no time to react and saw his inadvertent deflection go wide.

Bournemouth showed more intent moving forward early after the break, but it was Arsenal who found the game’s second goal in the 63rd minute. A counter-attack from the right wing found Mesut Ozil, who linked up beautifully with Oliver Giroud to put the Gunners ahead 2-0. Ozil weaved through a group of Cherries defenders, taking a clever flick from Giroud and slotting it through the keeper’s legs to double the Arsenal lead.

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

After the second goal, the Gunners saw the match out comfortably in a necessary win for the club. Bournemouth’s unbeaten run was snapped at six matches.

Bayern: Flick to stay manager “at least until Christmas”

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Bayern Munich is leaving the door open for Hansi Flick to snare its manager chair full-time.

Flick is 2-0 since taking over for Niko Kovac, including a 4-0 defeat of Borussia Dortmund in Der Klassiker.

[ WATCH: G. Jesus’ comical penalty miss ]

Bayern announced last weekend that Flick would manage the club for an indefinite period of time, and has the support of players like Robert Lewandowski as a possible season-long boss.

Chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge has clearly tired of answering questions about what ‘indefinite’ means.

From Sky Sports:

“Last Saturday, Uli Hoeness, Hasan Salihamidzic and I publicly announced that Hansi Flick is our head coach ‘until further notice.’ And since we don’t want to be asked every Saturday whether Hansi will be our head coach for the next match, I’ll tell you, dear members: ‘until further notice’ means Hansi Flick will bear responsibility in terms of sport at least until Christmas, and potentially beyond,” he said.

Flick, 54, managed Hoffenheim from 2000-05 before spending eight years as an assist on the Germany staff. He was hired July 1 to assist Kovac.

He played for Bayern over 100 times between 1985-90.

LIVE — USMNT seeks ‘payback’ v. Canada in CONCACAF Nations League

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The USMNT’s CONCACAF Nations League hopes are on the line when it meets Canada in Orlando at 7 p.m. ET on Friday.

[ FOLLOW: USMNT on Twitter ]

The Yanks seek to avenge a 2-0 loss to the Canucks in Toronto last month, one that heaped pressure on coach Gregg Berhalter.

If the USMNT fails to win on Friday, a match Canada also needs for its World Cup qualifying hopes, it will bow out of the tournament before the semifinal round.

There’s no place for DeAndre Yedlin in the back line, as Tim Ream‘s been chosen to play right back with a center back pairing of John Brooks and Aaron Long. Sergino Dest starts on the right.

The midfield will have Jackson Yueill lying deep, with Weston McKennie and Sebastian Lletget also getting the call.

Gyasi Zardes starts at center forward with Jordan Morris and Paul Arriola on the wings.

EURO qualifying wrap: Sweden joins Finland in qualifying

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Finland and Sweden have qualified for EURO 2020 after posting big wins on Friday, the former doing it at home to relative minnows Liechtenstein while the latter scored an impressive win away to Romania.

[ WATCH: G. Jesus’ comical penalty miss ]


Romania 0-2 Sweden

Marcus Berg and Robin Quaison scored first half goals as Sweden qualified for its sixth-straight EURO. Both are having decent starts to the club season. The veteran Berg has scored five times for Krasnodar, while the 26-year-old Quaison has scored four times for Mainz this season.

Spain 7-0 Malta

The Spanish had seven different goal scorers beginning with Alvaro Morata and Santi Cazorla providing a 2-0 halftime lead. Spain out shot Malta 25-1, with Pau Torres, Pablo Sarabia, Dani Olmo, and Gerard Moreno also scoring for an experimental squad.

And what if we told you Jesus Navas scored? Cause he did.

Denmark 6-0 Gibraltar

Christian Eriksen scored twice in the final five minutes after Robert Skov’s brace came sandwiched around Christian Gytkjaer and Martin Braithwaite goals. The Danes climbed to the top of Group D, one point better than the Swiss and three better than Republic of Ireland (who it meets on the last match day).

Switzerland 1-0 Georgia

Granit Xhaka went 90 minutes and Cedric Itten scored the game’s lone goal as the Swiss joined the Danes in climbing above Republic of Ireland.

Bosnia and Herzegovina 0-3 Italy

The Azzurri were clinical on Friday, with Francesco Acerbi, Lorenzo Insigne, and Andrea Belotti bagging

Elsewhere
Norway 4-0 Faroe Islands
Finland 3-0 Liechtenstein — RECAP
Armenia 0-1 Greece

WATCH: Gabriel Jesus comically misses penalty; Messi pots winner on Argentina return

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As long as Lionel Messi is on the field, Argentina and Brazil is going to be must-watch no matter the location.

Messi converted a rebound of his own won and saved penalty to score his 69th international goal in Argentina’s 1-0 win in a Saudi Arabia-hosted friendly on Friday.

[ MORE: Finland makes history ]

It was Messi’s first match with Argentina since the summer, when he was banned three months for claiming the 2019 Copa America tournament was fixed for hosts Brazil.

Let’s be real, though: You should be here for this terrible penalty miss from Gabriel Jesus.

The Brazilian also won his penalty, but his miss was a dreadful dribble wide of the frame. It clicked three boxes of terrible: no direction, no conviction, no technique.