Sheffield United shocked Arsenal with a 1-0 win thanks to a Lys Mousset goal. Chris Wilder’s men have been the surprise package of the season and defeated one of England’s biggest clubs to move into the top half of the table.
Arsenal, on the other hand, stay in fifth place with Leicester City and Chelsea leapfrogging them on Saturday.
Sheffield Utd a big priced winner
Ahead of the fixture, Sheffield United were 13/5 to win but they thoroughly deserved it with a well-drilled performance in both ends of the pitch.
The Blades put the pressure on the Gunners early on but it was Unai Emery’s side with the first decent chance. 5 minutes in, club-record signing Nicolas Pepe puts in a teasing delivery following a swift counter-attack but striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang could not get a touch on the ball to score.
A minute later, Sokratis was having his shirt pulled in the box but referee Mike Dean did not award a penalty and VAR did not overrule the decision either leaving the Greek baffled.
Sheffield United did have their first big chance halfway through the half where Lys Mousset should have done much better. The striker was just a few yards from goal but his attempt to flick the ball in backfired as he got it all wrong and the ball trickled the wrong way.
Arsenal then had a huge chance which Pepe shockingly failed to convert. The Ivorian started the move with a great skill move and a superb counter gave the £72m man to tap-in an inviting cross. However, the 24-year-old failed to connect with it properly and thus, missed a huge opportunity to get his second goal of the season.
Unai Emery’s side rued the missed chance just five minutes later with United opening the scoring via a corner. It was a well-worked set-piece where Jack O’Connell nods down into the six-yard box and Mousset poked home from close range.
The Frenchman was 8/1 to score first so any punters on him will have been delighted.
Bukayo Saka was booked for a supposed dive in the box but it did look harsh as there was some contact. Granit Xhaka also had a late chance with a great strike from outside the box but Dean Henderson was equal to it.
The Blades looked to add a second goal in the second half with Mousset’s chance at goal getting blocked in the nick of time by Sead Kolasinac.
Second-half substitute Dani Ceballos had a chance to tie the game just minutes later. However, the Spaniard scuffs a volley from a promising position straight at the keeper.
Chris Wilder’s side were impressive throughout and applied huge pressure onto the Gunners. They were hungry to double their lead but a swerving effort from John Fleck could not manage to get past Bernd Leno. The keeper did fumble the ball but managed to gather at the second attempt with David McGoldrick closing in.
Nicolas Pepe was perhaps the liveliest man on the pitch and looked Arsenal’s only hope of securing some points. He had two great efforts back-to-back just 15 minutes before full-time but they both did not hit the back of the net.
The electric winger will rue his missed sitter in the first half as Arsenal failed to muster up any chances late on handing the home side a shock but much-deserved win.