MX23RW : Tuesday, March 26 01:10:32
Sep 29, 2018 at 3pm UK at ​Emirates Stadium
Attendance: 60,019
Arsenal
2-0
Watford
Cathcart (81' og.), Ozil (83')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Gunners march on but Emery seeks stronger starts

Arsenal again had to wait into the second half before finding the goals to break down Watford.

Unai Emery admitted Arsenal need to improve their first-half displays after they again left it late to seal a 2-0 victory over Watford.

Their seventh successive win came courtesy of Craig Cathcart’s 81st-minute own goal and a strike soon afterwards from Mesut Ozil, and after Isaac Success had squandered a fine chance to give the visitors the lead.

Arsenal continue to show signs of progress under their new manager but as in recent victories over Cardiff, Newcastle and Everton they were not leading at half-time.

Similarly to against Everton they also could have lost had Watford capitalised on an encouraging display by taking their chances, and Emery said: “We need more moments in the 90 minutes for this control.

“The first half was not easy but our defensive moments were good. They were more than we wanted but we did well in the first half.

“In the second half, we scored two goals but we conceded two good chances for them. We need more control, we need to continue to improve with the control, with the possession, with the positioning.

“But it’s not easy. Each match is very difficult. I am happy because we are becoming more competitive.

“The ball was near our box for a lot of moments and the rhythm of the match is not particularly what we want. Our players in the first half were a little nervous and we need to continue in being calm.”

Petr Cech suffered a suspected hamstring injury in the first half that Emery expects to keep him out for the coming two to three weeks, leading to Bernd Leno making his league debut, but when asked if Leno could retain his place, the manager responded: “He can convince me, but not now.

“He played because of an injury to Petr Cech but I am very happy with him. He has waited for his moment.”

Following four league victories from four, Watford have secured only a single point from a possible nine despite continuing to impress.

Had substitute striker Success given them the lead, an away win would not have been an unjust outcome and their manager Javi Gracia said: “I am very upset for my players because they deserved more; a better result.

“We had a very good performance, with more shots, with a lot of clear chances to score. We deserved more. I’m sure the right results (will come).

“We are competing well in all the games. All the players are frustrated because they think we will be able to get a good result playing here. They have played well but, as in the last games, we feel we deserved more.

“I am very proud of my players. They have played well. Only the result was bad but the performance was very good.”


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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool31237170185276
2Manchester CityMan City30242479215874
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs30201957322561
4Arsenal30186663392460
5Manchester UnitedMan Utd30177658401858
6Chelsea30176750331757
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves30128103836244
8Watford30127114244-243
9West Ham UnitedWest Ham31126134146-542
10Leicester CityLeicester31125144043-341
11Everton31117134342140
12Bournemouth31115154356-1338
13Newcastle UnitedNewcastle3198143140-935
14Crystal Palace3096153641-533
15Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2996143242-1033
16Southampton3079143450-1630
17Burnley3186173559-2430
18Cardiff CityCardiff3084182757-3028
19Fulham3145222970-4117
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield3135231857-3914

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