Arsenal vs. Southampton – Football Match Report – December 16, 2020

Arsenal held on to earn a 1-1 draw against third-placed Southampton but their third red card in the last five games ensured their winless run in the Premier League extended to six matches.

Theo Walcott, who scored over 100 goals for Arsenal during a 12-year spell with the club, opened the scoring for Southampton, before a second-half strike from Gunners captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang saw them earn a first home point since Oct. 4.

Under-pressure Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta made four changes to the side that lost to Burnley on Sunday, with Eddie Nketiah, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Dani Ceballos and club-record signing Nicolas Pepe coming into the side with Willian and Alexandre Lacazette relegated to the substitutes’ bench.

That meant they named their youngest starting XI since September 2012, with the average age of the side just 24 years and 349 days.

Southampton made a strong start to the game and were rewarded in the 23rd minute when Che Adams won the ball in midfield and played Walcott in behind the Arsenal defence to chip past Bernd Leno.

Although they failed to create any clear-cut opportunities, Arsenal managed to get a foothold in the game but Southampton took a deserved lead into the break.

Aubameyang got Arsenal back into the game with a close-range strike in the 52nd minute after good work from Bukayo Saka on the left wing, but soon after they were up against it again as Gabriel‘s second caution of the game, for a foul on Walcott, left them down to 10 men in the 62nd minute.

Gabriel’s red card was Arsenal’s seventh in the Premier League since Arteta took over in December 2019 and it saw momentum swing back in Southampton’s favour.

Substitute Nathan Redmond struck the bar with an effort and a series of corners and sustained Southampton possession saw the Arsenal goal come under siege as Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side pursued a winner.

But Arsenal held firm and even struck the woodwork in stoppage time through a Rob Holding header.

That leaves Arsenal in 15th place.

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