Arsenal 4-1 Fulham: 5 Talking Points and Tactical Analysis | Premier League 2018-19
Arsenal notched up their first points of 2019, courtesy of a 4-1 victory over fellow Londoners, Fulham. The Gunners were not at their best, yet managed to get the job done to ensure a smooth start to the year.
Arsenal created an opportunity very early in the game but Aubameyang failed to keep his shot under the crossbar. After the early impetus, the Gunners suddenly looked bereft of ideas and played at a pedestrian pace.
The first goal of the game came when Xhaka popped up unmarked in the box. The Swiss international made no mistake in putting the ball in the back of the net to give Arsenal only their second half-time lead in the league this season.
The Gunners were much better going forward in the second half and Lacazette capped off a sublime team move with an emphatic finish in the 55th minute. However, Kamara scored in the 69th minute to set some panic among the Arsenal ranks.
But, it was only short-lived as Ramsey and Aubameyang scored in quick succession to kill the game off. The defeat left Fulham stranded in 19th place whereas the Gunners are now just a couple of points off the top four.
Here we take a look at the key talking points from the game.
#5 Fulham game could not have come at a better time for Arsenal
The Gunners have overseen a strange 2018-19 season so far. Their season started off with two defeats before they embarked on a 22-game unbeaten run. However, since the streak was brought to a halt, they have portrayed the deficiencies that they had seemingly overcome during the run.
At the weekend, the Gunners were handed an absolute mauling and hence, the game against Fulham gained greater importance. Fulham has the worst defensive record in the league, having conceded 43 goals in their 20 Premier League games before the Arsenal clash. After an uninspiring first 25 minutes, they produced a bit of quality in the final third to go ahead.
As the Gunners came out of the tunnel in the second period, they played a lot better to go 2-0 ahead. Later in the game, with Fulham applying pressure to eke out an unlikely draw, Ramsey struck the decisive third goal to end the game as a contest.
Despite an uninspiring performance, it was a much-needed win and three points for the Gunners. The game against Fulham could not have come at a better time for Arsenal. It gives them something to build on in their race for a top-four finish.