Newcastle vs Arsenal: Gunners beaten again in top-four collapse

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Newcastle vs Arsenal: The Magpies dealt perhaps the final blow to the Gunners’ top-four hopes with a 2-0 victory at St. James’ Park on Monday.

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Arsenal’s (66 points) second defeat in five days sees them slip to 5th in the Premier League table, two points behind north London rivals Tottenham (68 points), with one game left to play. Arsenal will host relegation-battling Everton, with Tottenham visiting already-relegated, last-place Norwich City at the same time on Championship Sunday.

Newcastle (46 points), meanwhile, have jumped from 14th to 12th with the victory. A top-half finish is still on the table for the Magpies, who trail 9th- and 10th-place Leicester City and Brighton & Hove Albion (48 points each) by two.


Newcastle vs Arsenal final score, stats, results

Final score: Newcastle 2, Arsenal 0

Goal scorers: Newcastle (White 55′ – OG, Guimaraes 85′), Arsenal (None)

Shots: Newcastle 16, Arsenal 11

Shots on target: Newcastle 4, Arsenal 2

Possession: Newcastle 51%, Arsenal 49%


3 things we learned – Newcastle vs Arsenal

1. Occasion too big for Arsenal: Just as was the case in the north London derby on Thursday, the pressure of being favorites — the expectation, and the fear of “blowing it” — appeared far too much for this young Arsenal side, who were consistently nothing short of brilliant in the run-up to the run-in. But, on Monday, they were slow in thought and in action, timid in their approach, increasingly shorthanded in their numbers as the game wore on and, ultimately, second-best to a side that just a few months ago was a legitimate relegation candidate. With three games to go in the season, they held a four-point lead. With one game to go, they trail by two. Only a Tottenham loss to Norwich will give Arsenal a final shot at Champions League qualification.

2. Arteta’s project still right on schedule: Without any European football this season, Mikel Arteta was able to put all of his focus and energy into preparing for Premier League games for the whole week, rather than all of the travel and less familiar opponents in continental competition. Through 35 games, they appeared to have arrived on the biggest stage a year ahead of schedule. Given they deployed the youngest (on average) starting lineup in the Premier League this season, it would have made for an incredible achievement. Alas, a return to the Europa League might have to do. They’ll be able to attract a slightly higher caliber of player with some European football to offer, but nothing close to what it would have been with Champions League TV money combined with the considerable commercial resources also at their disposal.

3. Speaking of summer recruitment…: Newcastle will look unrecognizably different by the time the 2022-23 Premier League season kicks off. It might be $200 million spent in the summer transfer window. It might be $300 million. It’ll take some time for the squad to gel together, and then Eddie Howe’s job will come under question every time they lose, and perhaps a new managerial carousel will begin operation, but there’s plenty for the Magpies to build upon after the way they came together from Boxing Day onward (11W-3D-5L over their last 19 games).


Newcastle vs Arsenal highlights

Ben White redirects cross into Arsenal goal (video)

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Bruno Guimaraes slides a rebound home to make it 2-0 (goal video)