Arsenal breaks down Leeds, scores stylish 4-1 win
Arsenal’s Premier League title run continues to grow in strength as the Gunners overcame a slow start to hammer Leeds United 4-1 on Saturday at the Emirates Stadium..
Gabriel Jesus struck twice, once from the spot, to join Ben White and Granit Xhaka on the score sheet and the Gunners led 3-0 before allowing a Rasmus Kristensen goal.
Arsenal restores its 8-point title lead over Manchester City, who battered Liverpool 4-1 earlier Saturday and holds a match-in-hand on the Gunners.
Leeds was coming off a feisty but fortunate 4-2 win over Wolves that it took it clear of the bottom three, and boss Javi Gracia’s lineup seemingly prioritized the side’s upcoming matches with Nottingham Forest and Crystal Palace this week by keeping Rodrigo, Weston McKennie, Georginio Rutter, and Patrick Bamford on the bench.
Leeds’ 26 points are currently good enough for 16th with one more point than 18th-place Leicester City.
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Gabriel Jesus reminding Premier League of his, Arsenal’s class
We could write about Leeds’ choice of lineup but it doesn’t really matter if Gabriel Jesus is going to continue to look nothing like a man who missed months of Arsenal’s title campaign.
The ex-Man City man is proving the reason the Gunners might just roll past his former club for a Premier League title even if they lose their head-to-head meeting with City in a few weeks.
Jesus won a penalty and then worked a oh-so-pretty extended give-and-go -- it wasn’t quite a 1-2 -- with Leandro Trossard to make it 3-0 on a day that was only going to go one way despite Leeds’ opening half-hour (or so) of good fight.
Almost everyone starred Saturday as the absence of William Saliba didn’t matter much for at least one day. We’ll see what happens against Liverpool next weekend.
Arsenal vs Leeds player ratings: Stars of the Show
Arsenal goes to Liverpool at 11:30am ET April 9 (next Sunday), while Leeds hosts Nottingham Forest on Tuesday before Palace arrives on April 9. Huge week for Leeds.
Gabriel Jesus goal video: Brazilian converts pen after silly Ayling challenge
Ben White goal video: Defender belts Martinelli cross home
Gabriel Jesus goal video: Clever give-and-go with Trossard
Rasmus Kristensen goal video: Deflected strike pulls one back
Granit Xhaka goal video: One more for the leaders
How to watch Arsenal vs Leeds live, stream link and start time
Kick off: 10am ET, SaturdayTV Channel: USA NetworkOnline: Stream via NBCSports.com
Key storylines & star players
For Arsenal, it’s going to continue to be a feast of talent in attacking positions as Bukayo Saka and Martin Odegaard are in the Premier League Player of the Year conversation and Gabriel Martinelli isn’t too far off. Perhaps Gabriel Jesus would be there, too, if he didn’t miss such a long stretch of time with injury but he’s fit and firing and Leeds has reason to worry about its back line. Leeds would love to see Maximillian Wober and Tyler Adams available but they are not and it will be incumbent about the attackers to make up for their absences. Weston McKennie and Marc Roca will be under the microscope today.
Arsenal team news, injuries, lineup options
OUT: William Saliba (lower back), Mohamed Elneny (knee), Eddie Nketiah (ankle), Takehiro Tomiyasu (knee)
Leeds team news, injuries, lineup options
OUT: Maximillian Wober (thigh), Stuart Dallas (thigh), Adam Forshaw (groin), Tyler Adams (hamstring), Wilfried Gnonto (ankle).