Report: Arsenal 1-0 Wolves
Arsenal might have let the points slip at the death last week but it was during that same time today that Wenger’s men grabbed victory by its horns.
The Barcelona showdown had robbed Arsenal of much commitment and energy coming into this weekend, so a straight-forward task in the league on Saturday would be very welcomed.
Wolves were just not straight-forward. Mick Mccarthy’s men had Arsenal toiling for the break-through all day and looked to have succeeded until Bendtner headed home in the last minute of injury time.
Three points off the leaders and a point behind second-place with five games to go, Arsenal will remain the outsiders of this three-horse title race but you just do not discount this team.
There might have been tired legs from Wednesday’s European exertions but Arsenal were raring to play today in the wake of United and Chelsea’s early meeting. And the latter’s win meant Wenger’s men could follow up this topsy-turvy race with a result today.
As usual, Arsenal were at business from kick-off. Theo Walcott weaved his way into the Wolves box after cutting in from the right, before chipping the ball back across goal where Eduardo forced goalkeeper Marcus Hahnemann into a fine, one-handed reaction save.
Wolves defender Michael Mancienne charged forwards and let fly from 25 yards, but the effort was just off target.
Arsenal went close again when Rosicky pulled the ball back through a crowded six-yard box to find Eduardo, but the Croatian could only stab the ball wide as he lost balance.
Walcott then released right-back Bacary Sagna on the overlap into the Wolves penalty area, and his shot was blocked by Hahnemann. After 15 minutes, the French defender was in again, this time sliding to hook the ball to Emmanuel Eboue, whose attempted backheel hit his trailing leg.
Arsenal continued to press, with Walcott testing Hahnemann with a 20-yard snap-shot after the ball dropped to him from a corner. Although it continued to be one-way traffic, Wolves remained solid.
Rosicky created some space for himself on the edge of the area, but could only fire his shot high into the stands, while Denilson then drilled a low effort wide and Mikael Silvestre tested the Wolves goalkeeper again.
Arsenal maintained the pressure at the start of the second half as Silvestre flashed a low centre across goal.Alex Song collected the ball 30 yards out and charged forwards, only to blaze his shot wide.
As the hour mark approached, Rosicky cut in from the right and fired a low, angled drive goalwards, which Hahnemann was again behind.There was still a threat from Wolves, though, as winger Matthew Jarvis flashed a couple of dangerous balls into the Arsenal six-yard box.
After 66 minutes, Wolves captain Henry was shown a straight red by referee Andre Marriner for needlessly going through the back of Rosicky, who was facing his own goal in the centre-circle.
The Czech midfielder needed treatment to his calf, but was soon back on the pitch and forced Hahnemann into another good reaction save before Bendtner stretched the American with a looping header.
Rosicky cleared off the line as Sol Campbell deflected the ball towards his own goal following a Wolves corner.Walcott stabbed a close-range effort wide during five minutes of stoppage time.
Then, just when it seemed all over, Sagna whipped the ball into the six-yard box where Bendtner arrived to bullet a header past Hahnemann as the Emirates Stadium erupted.