Nottingham Forest secured a famous 1-0 win over Arsenal at the City Ground on Saturday evening. The result means that Forest avoid relegation and preserve their Premier League status for the next season. It also ends Arsenal’s title hopes.
Manchester City thus retain their league title as they have an unsurmountable four-point lead with Arsenal having a solitary game to play.
Forest take surprising lead
Forest took the lead in the 19th minute when Taiwo Awoniyi scored through a stroke of fortune. Martin Odegaard needlessly gave the ball away in midfield, and Morgan Gibbs White drove through the Arsenal defense with a darting run.
The midfielder put Awoniyi through on goal and the striker’s effort took a deflection off Gabriel, which dinked over goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale to hit the back of the net.
Forest avoid relegation by restricting Arsenal
Forest, to their credit, restricted Arsenal after taking the lead and threatened n every opportunity when they won the ball up front.
Arsenal hardly offered any attacking threat in the rest of the half, but Mikel Arteta’s side settled down after the restart. The Gunners saw most of the ball but failed to garner any clear-cut openings as the Forest back five looked resolute.
Steve Cooper got his tactics spot on as the back five held their own with stoic defending. The center backs hardly allowed the Arsenal frontmen any free space in the final third with goalkeeper Keylor Navas also doing his part with his dominant ball collection.
Arteta did ring in changes from the bench to salvage the game but it was the hosts who held firm to secure a win against the Gunners for the first time in the top flight in 27 years.
For Arsenal, there will be questions on how they threw away the title in the past few weeks and it remains interesting to see how they perform next season in the league with European commitments.
Photo credit: IMAGO / Sportimage
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