Arsenal failed to scored for a third consecutive home game on Wednesday night as they were held to a 0-0 draw by Sunderland.
The result saw the Gunners take a firm hold of third place, but, more importantly, it sealed Sunderland’s place in the Premier League for another season.
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Sunderland set their stall out early on – they had come to frustrate Arsenal and try to nick the clean sheet that would guarantee their survival.
They certainly did frustrate the Gunners in the opening period. It took 41 minutes for a Sunderland player to have a touch of the ball in Arsenal’s penalty area.
At the other end, Arsenal were having plenty of the ball, but their passing was too slow and their attacking play was too elaborate at times…
Sunderland started the second half with more attacking intent and they were nearly rewarded with a goal, but David Ospina made two impressive saves in quick succession.
Arsenal regained the upper hand and made Sunderland goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon a very busy man.
Luck was on Sunderland’s side and the Black Cats were very fortunate not to concede one of the funniest own goals ever.
Sunderland hung on and, at the final whistle, John O’Shea’s delight was clear for all to see. He, strangely, opted to celebrate with referee Anthony Taylor.