Arsenal 1-1 Tottenham: Kieran Gibbs grabs late point for Gunners

Arsenal's Kieran Gibbs. © Toby Melville
A 77th-minute goal from substitute Kieran Gibbs kept Arsenal joint top of the Premier League after a stormy draw with Tottenham, with the Gunners fighting back after England striker Harry Kane had set Spurs on course for a rare win at the Emirates.

With Manchester City held to a goalless draw at the Etihad earlier on Sunday, the impetus was on Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal to claim three points against neighbors Tottenham Hotspur in the late kickoff to claim top spot outright in the Premier League for the first time this season.

But with Mauricio Pochettino’s Spurs putting in a performance of real industry at the Emirates, the Gunners found it difficult to get a prolonged foothold in the game.

Taking the lead play in the first half and continuing to stifle Arsenal in all but the aerial confrontations in the match, it looked like Spurs would be rewarded for their efforts. However, a late intervention from Gibbs spared the club from a first defeat at home in the North London derby since 2010.

Kane, who recently rediscovered his form in front of goal, put Spurs ahead after 32 minutes, running on to a defense-splitting pass from Danny Rose from the left to calmly slot under Arsenal keeper Petr Cech.

The opening goal for Tottenham came very much against the run of play, with Arsenal eager to go two points clear at the top of the league.

Indeed, despite Arsenal’s initial dominance, the pendulum swung very much in Tottenham’s favor after the break, with Kane, Toby Alderweireld and Christian Erikson spurning chances to go two goals to the good.

Olivier Giroud had an eventful afternoon, striking the Tottenham bar in the second half after yet another tempting ball from Mesut Ozil, the Premier League’s top assist-maker.

The French striker had a number of chances to draw his side level, and was involved in a feisty duel with Spurs’ Eric Dier throughout.

But it fell to substitute Kieran Gibbs to save the Gunners’ blushes, running on to an Ozil ball to the far post to fire against keeper Hugo Lloris and into the roof of the net.

The result keeps Arsenal second in the league on goal difference, a point ahead of high-flying Leicester City and two from Manchester United.

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