Van Persie rescues 1-0 win for Arsenal vs Everton
Robin van Persie rescued Arsenal again by crashing home a
stunning volley to earn a 1-0 win over Everton in the Premier
League on Saturday.
The Netherlands striker peeled off his marker to meet a floated
pass by Alex Song in the 70th minute with a powerful shot that went
in off the far post, taking his league-high tally to 15 goals.
”Robin got us a goal, which was at the moment of the game where
we struggled a little bit to create chances,” Arsenal manager
Arsene Wenger said. ”He delivered something special and three
The deserved victory was the perfect way for Arsenal to
celebrate the club’s 125-year anniversary festivities, lifting
Wenger’s team provisionally above Chelsea into the top four thanks
to a sixth win in eight league games.
Arsenal legends Frank McLintock, Charlie George, David O’Leary,
George Graham, Robert Pires, Jens Lehmann and Thierry Henry – who
on Friday was one of three former players to have a bronze statue
of him unveiled outside the Emirates – all helped make up a guard
of honor as Van Persie led the current side onto the field.
”Today was an historic day for us. So it’s not easy to keep the
focus right with so many people here and the celebration before the
game, with everybody coming back,” Wenger said.
”But we were a bit historical today as well because we won
1-0,” added the Frenchman, referring to a scoreline Arsenal was
famous for having in its title-winning years under Graham in 1989
The winning margin could have been bigger had the hosts taken
advantage of a number of clear-cut chances, particularly in the
first half when Theo Walcott ran riot down the right wing up
against England teammate Leighton Baines.
Aaron Ramsey and Gervinho wasted one-on-one chances before the
break, before Van Persie failed to get the right connection from
Walcott’s volleyed cross and ended up skying a finish over the bar
in the 54th.
Walcott then drew a wonderful, one-handed save from United
States goalkeeper Tim Howard two minutes later, only for Van Persie
to save the day with his 12th goal in his last eight league
It was the Dutchman’s 33rd goal of the calendar year, one fewer
than Henry’s haul in 2004. Former Newcastle and Blackburn striker
Alan Shearer holds the all-time record with 36.
”It was a terrific finish, a really good goal which beat us,”
Everton manager David Moyes said. ”But we can’t kid ourselves
because we were fortunate to go into halftime at 0-0.”
The nearest Everton came to salvaging a draw was in second-half
stoppage time, when substitute Conor McAleny flashed a drive just
wide. The defeat left the northwest team in mid-table.