Arsenal's dismal collapse almost complete after defeat at Man City

Granit Xhaka and Arsenal are falling apart after a 4-1 thumping at City /COURTESY PICTURE

EPL Arsenal's dismal collapse almost complete after defeat at Man City

Ndyamuhaki J Emanzi 22:08 - 26.04.2023

City's win moved them to within two points of the Gunners and with two games in hand.

The Premier League title race took another fascinating twist as leaders Arsenal were hammered 4-1 by Manchester City at the Etihad Wednesday night.

The Gunners found themselves behind inside the first ten minutes after Kevin De Bruyne was put through on goal by Erling Haaland.

The hosts dominated the first half and made it 2-0 just before halftime, defender John Stones jumping highest to head in De Bruyne's freekick.

The goal had to go through a thorough VAR check after it was disallowed for offside, but it stood, and City were entirely in charge going into the halftime break.

De Bruyne completed his brace in the 54th minute to stretch City's lead, and from there on, it was a professional performance from the defending champions.

Arsenal barely threatened in the game, but Rob Holding scored in the 86th minute for the visitors' consolation.

Haaland completed the rout in added time to send the home crowd into frenzy.

The Gunners and their title credentials were given a thorough examination in Manchester, but they failed to twist the race into City's favour.

The two sides went into the game with Arsenal carrying a five-point advantage, albeit having played two games more than their hosts.

City's win moved them to within two points of the Gunners and with two games in hand.

How we got here

Arsenal were 2-0 up before the break at Anfield and ended up drawing 2-2.

Anfield is a tough place to visit, and only a few would be criticized for escaping with a point like Arsenal did.

But if you are going to win the Premier League, you must be able to pass such tests in the season, and Arsenal failed on that occasion.

The next stop was in London, where Westham awaited. And when Gabriel Jesus and Martin Ødegaard scored inside ten minutes to give the table leaders a 2-0 lead, it looked like the draw at Anfield was only a minor mishap.

But questions had to be asked when Saïd Benrahma and Jarrod Bowen scored for Westham to take a point from the game.

Questions had to be asked as to whether Arsenal had the mental strength to challenge City for the title.

But the last few weeks have shown that the wheels are falling off for the North London side.

And if there were any doubts about Arsenal's struggles, a third straight draw was enough to clear those.

It could have been worse for the Gunners, who needed two late goals to steal a point off bottom-side Southampton at the Emirates.

The 3-3 draw, just before the journey to the Etihad, left Arteta and his troops in deep trouble, and it now looks like a matter of when and not if City will win the title.

Three draws and a loss differ from the kind of run Arsenal would have hoped for, and their wait for a league title looks headed for a much longer wait than many thought.