Manchester United 1-1 Arsenal: Giroud denies Mourinho

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  • Mata scores in 68th minute
  • Giroud equalizes in 89th minute
  • Mourinho unbeaten in 12 PL games vs. Wenger
  • United on 19 points

MANCHESTER — Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United drew 1-1 with Arsene Wenger‘s Arsenal at Old Trafford on Saturday as the Portuguese coach kept his incredible record intact of never losing to Wenger, or Arsenal, in the Premier League, but was left feeling flat after a late equalizer for the Gunners.

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Juan Mata finished superbly on the edge of the box to give United a deserved lead against a lackluster Arsenal but Olivier Giroud headed home late on to snatch a point for Wenger.

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With the point United move on to 19 for the season, remaining six points behind Arsenal.

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Arsenal had the first chance of the game as a corner from the left was set back and Nacho Monreal‘s cross was flicked onto Sanchez at the back post but his header across goal evaded everyone. Great opportunity missed for the Gunners.

United started brightly and after patient build up from Juan Mata and Antonio Valencia, Pogba surged into the box but his dangerous cutback evaded his teammates.

Francis Coquelin then had a speculative effort at the other end but as half time approached United did all the pressing.

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First a through ball from Martial found Valencia who ran into the box and looked to be upended but no penalty kick was awarded by referee Andre Marriner. Mourinho couldn’t believe it as he raced around the sidelines. Moments later came the first shot on target in the 36th minute of the first half as Pogba found Mata who wriggled free but his low shot was tipped just wide by Petr Cech. United were in the ascendancy as Martial curled a shot from the left side of the box which Cech had to tip over.

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At the start of the second half Arsenal broke free and Walcott’s cross was cleared for a corner. From that set piece Phil Jones cleared under pressure from Laurent Koscielny as both teams struggled to win the midfield battle.

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Wayne Rooney then arrived with 30 minutes to go and was greeted by warm cheers from the home fans after his tumultuous week off the field.

Rooney’s arrival seemed to lift United and he had a pivotal role in United’sgoal. Pogba was set free on the right and his ball to Herrera saw the Spaniard cut it back to the penalty spot. Rooney dragged two defenders with him and Mata arrived in the space behind him and finished first time. 1-0 to United as the Spaniard was booked for celebrating wildly with his teammates in the Stretford End with the fans.

After that goal the chances kept coming for United as Marcos Rojo headed inches wide but then a late dagger was to be forced into Mourinho’s heart.

Despite their lackluster play, Arsenal grabbed an 89th minute equalizer as two substitutes combined. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain raced down the right and his cross was powerfully headed home by Giroud at the back post. 1-1.