Premier League
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Arsenal 0-0 Manchester United

By Phil McNultyChief football writer at Emirates Stadium
Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere and Manchester United midfielder Michael Carrick fight for the ball

Arsenal missed the chance to return to the top of the Premier League as they played out a grim goalless stalemate with Manchester United at Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners were attempting to recover from the 5-1 mauling at Liverpool, while United were desperate to bounce back from the 2-2 draw at home to bottom club Fulham.

And it showed in a game that was desperately disappointing in between a flurry of chances in the opening and closing minutes, ending in a result that did not serve the purposes of Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger or United counterpart David Moyes, other than in avoiding defeat.

Former Arsenal striker Robin van Persie came closest for the visitors but his early effort was saved by Wojciech Szczesny, who also turned the Dutchman's late header onto the bar.

Arsenal 0-0 Man Utd: David Moyes says fight for fourth will continue

Olivier Giroud missed Arsenal's best opportunity although Santi Cazorla brought two fine late saves out of United keeper David De Gea and Laurent Koscielny's header was cleared off the line by Antonio Valencia.

For too long, however, this was a poor game between two sides who seemed intent on avoiding defeat as their first priority - and a shadow of previous games between these two clubs in recent years.

Moyes is still waiting for his first win at Arsenal in his managerial career, while the home side could not land a morale-boosting blow in their pursuit of the title as they remained a point adrift of leaders Chelsea.

United, meanwhile, are still seventh, now 11 points behind fourth-placed Liverpool.

The excitement of the opening moments and an exchange of chances proved to be a false dawn ahead of a turgid first half.

Van Persie should have punished his former club when he robbed Mikel Arteta 25 yards out to advance on Szczesny but his shot lacked power and the keeper was able to save low down.

Giroud then wasted an equally good opportunity when he muscled his way ahead of Nemanja Vidic only to head Cazorla's corner wide.

De Gea then needed to make a diving stop as Tomas Rosicky's shot deflected off Vidic - but otherwise this was stale fare from two teams who have produced so much better.

Moyes made an enforced change at the start of the second half as he sent on Rio Ferdinand for Rafael, who had taken a blow to the head in an aerial challenge with Giroud.

It was Arsenal who came closest again just after the hour when Koscielny rose to meet another Cazorla corner only to see his header swept off the line by Valencia.

As the game entered its final 20 minutes both Wenger and Moyes attempted to give their sides fresh impetus as Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain replaced Rosicky and Adnan Januzaj replaced the subdued Juan Mata.

There had been little sign of any partnership between Rooney and Van Persie but the pair linked superbly as United almost went ahead with 11 minutes left. Rooney's cross found Van Persie at the far post but Szczesny reacted superbly to push his header on to the bar.

Arsenal responded as the game finally showed signs of life, De Gea doing well to save from Cazorla on two separate occasions in the closing minutes, but there was no breakthrough.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger:

"Overall, we could have won it - it was a game of few chances. Our defensive focus was extreme as we conceded so many goals on Saturday.

"In the end, either side could have won 1-0. Manchester United are a good team, so when you go forward they can catch you.

"It is important to recover physically and prepare for the next game as we want to stay in the FA Cup. The title race is absolutely open for many teams."

Line-ups

Arsenal

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Szczesny
  • 3SagnaBooked at 87mins
  • 28Gibbs
  • 10Wilshere
  • 4Mertesacker
  • 6Koscielny
  • 7RosickySubstituted forOxlade-Chamberlainat 74'minutes
  • 8Arteta
  • 12Giroud
  • 11Özil
  • 19Cazorla

Substitutes

  • 9Podolski
  • 15Oxlade-Chamberlain
  • 17Monreal
  • 21Fabianski
  • 22Sanogo
  • 23Bendtner
  • 25Jenkinson

Man Utd

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1de Gea
  • 2da SilvaSubstituted forFerdinandat 45'minutes
  • 3Evra
  • 23Cleverley
  • 12Smalling
  • 15Vidic
  • 25A ValenciaBooked at 73minsSubstituted forYoungat 82'minutesBooked at 90mins
  • 16Carrick
  • 20van Persie
  • 10Rooney
  • 8MataSubstituted forJanuzajat 75'minutes

Substitutes

  • 5Ferdinand
  • 13Lindegaard
  • 14Hernández
  • 18Young
  • 28Büttner
  • 31Fellaini
  • 44Januzaj
Referee:
Mark Clattenburg
Attendance:
60,021

Match Stats

Home TeamArsenalAway TeamMan Utd
Possession
Home57%
Away43%
Shots
Home17
Away6
Shots on Target
Home5
Away2
Corners
Home5
Away5
Fouls
Home10
Away14

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Arsenal 0, Manchester United 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Arsenal 0, Manchester United 0.

  3. Booking

    Ashley Young (Manchester United) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  4. Post update

    Bacary Sagna (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  5. Post update

    Foul by Ashley Young (Manchester United).

  6. Post update

    Attempt saved. Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Olivier Giroud.

  7. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Mesut Özil (Arsenal) left footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

  8. Post update

    Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  9. Post update

    Foul by Patrice Evra (Manchester United).

  10. Booking

    Bacary Sagna (Arsenal) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

  11. Post update

    Foul by Bacary Sagna (Arsenal).

  12. Post update

    Wayne Rooney (Manchester United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  13. Post update

    Mikel Arteta (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  14. Post update

    Foul by Robin van Persie (Manchester United).

  15. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Mesut Özil.

  16. Post update

    Attempt saved. Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) left footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the bottom left corner. Assisted by Mesut Özil.

  17. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Santiago Cazorla (Arsenal) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Mesut Özil.

  18. Substitution

    Substitution, Manchester United. Ashley Young replaces Luis Antonio Valencia.

  19. Post update

    Mikel Arteta (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  20. Post update

    Foul by Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United).

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Chelsea26176348212757
2Arsenal26175448262256
3Man City25173568274154
4Liverpool26165566323453
5Tottenham2615563632450
6Everton25129437261145
7Man Utd26126841311042
8Southampton2610973729839
9Newcastle26114113238-637
10Swansea2677123336-328
11West Ham2677122833-528
12Aston Villa2677122736-928
13Hull2676132531-627
14Stoke2669112741-1427
15Crystal Palace2582151834-1626
16Norwich2667131939-2025
17West Brom26412103038-824
18Sunderland2566132538-1324
19Cardiff2657141944-2522
20Fulham2662182658-3220
View full Premier League table

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