May 23, 2022

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Arsenal’s top-four hopes take another hit with defeat to Southampton

2 min read

Arsenal’s chances of securing Champions League football for next season suffered another blow as Jan Bednarek condemned them to a 1-0 loss at Southampton.

Bednarek put the hosts ahead on the stroke of half-time, with Fraser Forster making two excellent saves as Southampton inflicted Arsenal to a third straight Premier League defeat.

Having watched Tottenham suffer a last-minute reverse to Brighton and Hove Albion earlier on Saturday, Arsenal would have moved level with their top-four rivals with a victory.

A flat performance from the Gunners, however, meant Spurs’ slip-up went unpunished, allowing Southampton to end a five-match winless run of their own.

Despite the end result, Arsenal did make a bright start, with Cedric Soares drawing a decent save from Forster after cutting in from the right.

Southampton’s goalkeeper was forced into a more difficult stop when he brilliantly diverted Bukayo Saka’s effort over the bar.

The Saints recovered from their slow start to strike first, though, when Bednarek swept Mohamed Elyounoussi’s cut back home from close range after 44 minutes.

Eddie Nketiah went close with a neat backheel after meeting Cedric’s cross as Arsenal searched for a response, before Saka almost picked out the top-right corner after cutting in from the right on the hour.

Forster made his second stunning save in the 73rd minute, getting down to his left to turn substitute Emile Smith Rowe’s fierce volley away from the corner.

He then denied Saka and Granit Xhaka in the final 10 minutes as Arsenal’s season threatens to spiral downwards.

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