Updated:Mar 14, 2023 10:29 am
Arsenal came into this game needing a win to respond to Man City’s narrow 1-0 victory against Crystal Palace a day earlier, thanks to another Erling Haaland goal. However, it didn’t take long to rest Arsenal fans’ nerves in the West side of their city.
It was men against boys in the first 25 minutes as Fulham felt Arsenal’s presence. Arsenal continued to dominate possession and win the ball back high up the pitch which ultimately resulted in their first goal which was ultimately ruled out for offside.
Gabriel made sure to capitalise on the momentum with a towering header from a Trossard corner that broke the deadlock. Gabriel doubled up to score his second goal against Fulham this season having scored a decisive winner in the home fixture earlier in the season.
Trossard continued to enjoy the wing as the ball was awkwardly pinged into him by Xhaka, he took it under control and crossed it with a little help from a Tosin deflection into Martinelli to head home the second. With the first two goals being just five minutes apart Fulham needed to change something if they were to prevent a battering.
Arsenal continued to push on despite a little fightback from fulham, they created very few chances. This was largely due to arsenal’s great defensive shape forcing Fulham to strike from range unsuccessfully.
Odegaard and Trossard were linking up well to create a handful of chances that could have had the gunners up by 5 going into the half. They finally scored a third thanks to another Trossard assist.
Partey jumps on a wayward throw and kickstarts the counter-attack, he then brings Saka into play who sprays the ball out wide to Martinelli who brings Trossard into play who then plays the ball into the box almost identically to the second goal. Odegaard meets the ball in the box with an abundance of time, he composes himself, takes two touches and fires into the bottom corner on the stroke of halftime. By the halftime whistle the game was dead and buried at 3-0.
This assist made Trossard the only player to get a first-half hat trick in a premier league away game (Thanks Opta!).
While the second half was a bit more competitive, it was clear Arsenal were going to be walking away with the three points.
The major takeaways from the second half saw Saka replaced by Nelson who was equally energetic and impactful as he was when coming on against Bournemouth. Although, trumping that substitution saw Gabriel Jesus finally return to huge rows from the away end. Jesus had little time to impact the game as Arsenal’s midfield had slowed the game significantly, there was time for one counter-attack in the dying embers where Viera put it on a plate for Jesus in a one-on-one with Leno which saw Jesus fail to find the target.
Nevertheless, this sent a message to Man City that Arsenal is true title challengers and reminded them that they are going to have to win out to stand a chance of piping Arsenal to the post.