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MATCH REVIEW: Newcastle 0-2 Arsenal

Arsenal keep pace with Manchester City with a win over Newcastle United at St James’ Park.

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Folarin Balogun may leave Arsenal this summer
Image Credit: Getty Images

Arsenal secured a hard-fought 2-0 victory against Newcastle at St James’ Park to keep their title hopes alive.

In a pulsating game played in a hostile atmosphere, Mikel Arteta’s men showed great resilience and character to see off a Newcastle side that had won eight of their last nine games. 

Martin Odegaard put Arsenal ahead with a stunning 30-yard strike on 14 minutes, before a Fabian Schar deflected Gabriel Martinelli’s shot into his own net in the second half.

Despite the home side hitting the woodwork twice through Jacob Murphy and Alexander Isak, Arsenal held on to secure a vital victory that keet them within touching distance of league leaders Manchester City.

Last season, Arsenal’s top-four hopes were dashed with a defeat at St James’ Park. However, this time around, the Gunners showed their mettle and dug deep to secure a crucial three points.

Newcastle started brightly and had a penalty claim turned down, before Odegaard’s moment of brilliance settled Arsenal down and put them in control of the game. Aaron Ramsdale made a string of decisive saves to keep the home side at bay. Meanwhile, Gabriel Martinelli hit the crossbar as the Gunners threatened on the break.

Gabriel Martinelli celebrating Arsenal’s second goal against Newcastle. [Image Credit: Getty Images]

The second goal proved decisive, as Martinelli’s cross deflected off Schar and into the net to give Arsenal some breathing space. This was a performance to be proud of for Arteta’s men, who showed they have the resilience and determination to stay in the title race.

While Manchester City still have a game in hand, Arsenal are not giving up on their title hopes yet. With a group of battle-hardened players who are willing to fight for every point, the Gunners will look to maintain their momentum in the final few games of the season.

Speaking after the game, Mikel Arteta says the team made a statement with the win.

“I think the word to describe it is pride,” Arteta said. “When you have question marks, you have to resolve them straight away. When you had the emotions that we had last year in that dressing room, you have to make sure that you feel them again. 

“To realise how difficult, how nasty and how unpleasant they are, and then you have to find a way to approach the game in a different way, because the manner is going to be higher than last year. The boys did that extremely well so I’m really proud of them.”

On talking about last year’s result before the game:

“We have to feel it, I think it wasn’t enough just talking about it. We have to feel it, we have to see it, we have to recognise our phases. Not only the players, but what it meant for the staff as well, and that’s football. You can win or lose but that feeling is beyond something and that we didn’t do enough in the day, and we had to put that right today.”

Full transcript of Arteta’s Newcastle United post match conference

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