Arsenal pip Tottenham to third with win over West Brom

17:57 13 May 2012

Arsenal

Arsenal's Laurent Koscielny (far left) celebrates scoring his side's third goal of the game with teammates

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Premier League: West Bromwich Albion 2 Arsenal 3

Arsenal pipped Tottenham to an automatic Champions League spot with a dramatic victory over West Brom and they will have Baggies’ goalkeeper Marton Fulop to thank after a nightmare display between the sticks.

Fulop, who replaced the injured Ben Foster, was at fault for all three Gunners goals from Yossi Benayoun, Andre Santos and Laurent Koscielny as Arsene Wenger’s side came from 2-1 down to win.

Albion had netted through Shane Long and Graham Dorrans after Benayoun’s opener, but Fulop’s horror show meant the Gunners ended the season with a win.

Most importantly, the result will also give the club a stronger hand to play in attempting to keep hold of leading scorer and skipper Robin van Persie.

Albion will now look to find a successor for Hodgson and attempt to build on a second successive mid-table finish.

Arsenal were the first to settle and a mistake by Fulop gifted Benayoun the opening goal after three minutes.

Van Persie and James Morrison challenged for the ball in midfield and the ball ricocheted into the path of Fulop.

But he appeared to stumble when under no pressure and Benayoun was left with the simplest of tasks to knock the ball into an empty net.

Albion retaliated and Wojciech Szczesny produced a fine low save to keep out a shot on the turn from a narrow angle by Marc-Antoine Fortune.

But after 11 minutes the fit-again Long brought the Baggies on level terms.

He chased down a pass from Morrison and hammered a low shot past Szczesny into the corner of the net.

Wenger appealed in vain for offside with the fourth official but Long appeared to be played onside by Carl Jenkinson.

Three minutes later an equally clinical finish from Dorrans put the Baggies in front.

Morrison was again the creator and Dorrans gave Szczesny no chance of saving with a similar finish to that of Long.

Gareth McAuley blocked an effort from Benayoun inside the box and a Van Persie free-kick hit the defensive wall, but after half an hour Santos brought the Gunners level.

Fulop got a hand to his swerving left-footed drive from 20 yards out but could only parry it into the corner of the net.

Play was moving from end to end and Van Persie became the first player to be booked seven minutes before half-time for a touchline challenge on McAuley.

Wenger brought on Theo Walcott in place of Tomas Rosicky for the second half.

The visitors started the period on the offensive and a cross-shot from Santos was only just off target.

Albion were forced to reshuffle after 51 minutes when the impressive Morrison limped out of the action to be replaced by Keith Andrews.

Fulop’s horror show continued when another mistake gifted Koscielny a goal after 54 minutes to restore Arsenal’s lead.

The former Sunderland goalkeeper punched a corner from Van Persie back towards his own goal and Koscielny made no mistake from four yards out.

Albion tried to recover and a Jonas Olsson header was deflected over his own bar by Van Persie.

Then Szczesny reacted quickly to turn aside a shot on the turn from Andrews.

In injury-time substitute Kieran Gibbs produced a vital block on Billy Jones’ shot after he burst into the box.

Related articles

Live Blog Transfer Window Live - January 27

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest Stories from SNAP.PA

Anything can happen on live TV – including one dog getting very frisky on This Morning.

Read more

Hollywood beckons for Roger Hargreaves’ much-loved creations.

Read more

Have you noticed lots of ladies with smudged lippie on social media lately? Find out why they’re deliberately committing a make-up faux pas.

Read more

Promoted content

Valentine's Day Afternoon Tea

London Hilton on Park Lane is inviting couples to celebrate this Valentines Day over a deliciously romantic afternoon tea at Podium Restaurant and Bar. Taking inspiration from the highly popular Confessions of a Chocoholic Afternoon Tea, London Hilton on Park Lane presents the ultimate romantic afternoon out with its Valentine’s Day Afternoon Tea.

Established in 1987, Tucci is one of the North's premier stores for branded clothing, footwear and accessories.

Save up to 70% on designer brands for Men and Women, including G-Star, Diesel, French Connection, Firetrap and many more….our sale is now on.

Valentine's Day in London

If you’re struggling over what to buy for the special person in your life in your life, our Valentine’s Day in London section is here to help.

Match reports

TOP STORIES

Arsenal Quizzes

Adrian Chiles is no longer ITV's main man... so why not test your knowledge of some of his (and others') greatest gaffes? (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

With news of presenter Adrian Chiles’ sacking by ITV, it’s a good time to remember some of the most memorable punditry blunders.

Read more
£50million Fernando Torres and former Fulham striker Kostas Mitroglous are two of the biggest transfer flops in recent Premier League history

The transfer window is a time for optimisim, but it doesn’t always work out for the best...

Read more
Try our fiendishly difficult new Arsenal quiz! Picture: PA

This new quiz will test even the most devoted Arsenal fans’ knowledge...

Read more

Arsenal Transfer News