Leeds cannot find way past 10-man Arsenal
Leeds - Arsenal: There were chances a-plenty between Leeds United and 10-man Arsenal in a scoreless draw at Elland Road on Sunday.
It was a decent watch but neither side will be happy with the result, as Arsenal’s poor league scoring record stayed poor and Leeds couldn’t find a winner despite nearly a whole half up a man.
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The Gunners are now 11th with 13 points, two more than 14th-place Leeds, who welcomed Kalvin Phillips back in the win.
Three things we learned from Leeds - Arsenal
1. Goalkeepers star in entertaining 0-0: Bernd Leno and Illan Meslier both made massive stops in this clean sheet affair, the former making more of them but the latter’s late, off-balance denial of a streaking Saka was something to see (especially in slow motion). Leno was helped by his post in the late stages, as this game just wouldn’t allow anything but zeroes.
2. Pepe’s in trouble: Pepe’s VAR-aided straight red for going head-to-head with Alioski is not the way to earn any sort of trust from Arteta, who wasn’t handing the Ivorian many opportunities anyway.
3. Arteta’s attack is out of whack: There was nothing coming from Arsenal aside from pre-red Pepe. Even ever-bright attackers like Willian were partly cloudy, and Aubameyang remains in a massive slump. It’s bad out there, though there was a lot to like late from Bukayo Saka moving forward. And, of course, Saka was injured late to add injury to insult.
Here are the Gunners’ last four league outings.
Oct. 17 - L 0-1 at Man City
Oct. 25 - L 0-1 v Leicester
Nov. 1 -- W 1-0 at Man Utd
Nov. 8 -- L 0-3 v Villa
Man of the Match: Erzgan Alioski
The Leeds left back just edges Leno.
Leeds - Arsenal recap
Ezgjan Alioski tore down the left side and cut back for Patrick Bamford in the 13th minute but Bernd Leno was quick enough to stop the Englishman’s outside-of-the-foot effort.
Nicolas Pepe nearly found Willian with a searching ball in the 26th minute and Leeds threatened through a Raphinha 25-yard curler a couple of minutes later, the match threatening to open up.
Leeds’ Stuart Dallas ripped a volley wide of the far post with a charging run to a loose ball in the 34th, while Pepe swirled a distance shot of his wide just before halftime.
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Pepe’s decent day died when he went head-to-head with Alioski and VAR led to a red card.
Dallas tested Leno just after the hour mark, a terrific save from the German keeping the match scoreless.
Illan Meslier stayed with Saka off a tremendous pass from Hector Bellerin and saved a point for Leeds.