14 Jan, 18:49
Bournemouth scored twice in four minutes as they came from a goal down to see off Arsenal 2-1 at the Vitality Stadium in their first ever win over the Gunners.
The home side mustered the first attempt when Adam Smith fired wide early on, but after eight minutes Arsenal were within a whisker of breaking through. The chance came when Jack Wilshere, on loan at Bournemouth last season, linked with Alexandre Lacazette to find Ainsley Maitland-Niles, whose effort cannoned back off the bar.
Alex Iwobi tested home keeper Asmir Begovic before Bournemouth midfielder Dan Gosling was booked after going to ground under a Shkodran Mustafi challenge when the Arsenal player appeared to have caught him. With 10 minutes to go until half-time, Arsenal were close to breaking through when Danny Welbeck evaded a Simon Francis challenge to force Begovic into more action, but back came Bournemouth and Ryan Fraser saw a dangerous-looking strike blocked.
HT Bou 1 - Ars 0.
After a quiet start, the second half burst into life when Arsenal took the lead after 52 minutes. Hector Bellerin on target after Iwobi had put him through one-on-one with keeper Begovic, who got a hand to the strike but could not stop it. Iwobi and Lacazette linked up after 67 minutes only for the final ball from the former to go awry and within three minutes of that wasted opportunity Bournemouth had equalized.
The first Bournemouth goal came when Fraser and substitute Lys Mousset swapped passes down the right and Callum Wilson was in the right place to turn home the cross.
Four minutes later, soon after Arsenal had brought on Aaron Ramsey to try and get themselves going again, the turnaround was complete when Wilson controlled a long pass forward and set up Jordon Ibe, whose shot went in off Cech.
FT Bou 2 - Ars 1.
There was a sense of predictability to Arsenal's capitulation, and they appeared bereft of ideas in their search for a leveler. The Gunners lay siege to Bournemouth's goal, committing men forward, but were unable to repeat their last-minute dramatics of last season and succumbed to another disappointing defeat.
The loss leaves Arsenal five points behind both Liverpool and Spurs, occupying the third and fourth Champions League places, while Bournemouth climbed to 13th, above Huddersfield.
This performance left pundits like Michael Owen and Peter Schmeichel asking questions like whether this was how Arsenal would always play without Sanchez and Ozil.
Bournemouth XI: Begovic; Daniels, Francis, Ake, Steve Cook, Smith; Lewis Cook, Gosling; Wilson, Ibe, Fraser.
Arsenal XI: Cech; Chambers, Mustafi, Holding; Bellerin, Xhaka, Wilshere, Maitland-Niles; Welbeck, Iwobi, Lacazette.