Arsenal and Liverpool played out the best game of the Premier League season so far, the Gunners coming from two goals down to lead only for Roberto Firmino to claim a dramatic 3-3 draw.
Philippe Coutinho had Liverpool deservedly in front at half-time, the Brazil international beating Petr Cech with a deft header after Mohamed Salah’s cross looped up off Laurent Koscielny.
But while Jurgen Klopp’s side dominated the first period, they were later left to rue missed chances.
An epic second half initially saw a rampant Liverpool double their advantage shortly after the restart, Salah’s shot deflecting in after Firmino led a superb counter-attack.
Their two-goal lead was short-lived, though, as a resurgent Arsenal were in front with three goals inside five remarkable minutes.
Alexis Sanchez headed through the legs of Simon Mignolet from Hector Bellerin’s pinpoint right-wing cross, and then the goalkeeper was beaten too easily by Granit Xhaka’s viciously swerving drive.
The comeback was seemingly complete thanks to Mesut Ozil’s sensational finish, the playmaker chipping Mignolet after a sublime one-two with Alexandre Lacazette, but Firmino beat Cech with 19 minutes left to level the match.
A draw was certainly the fairest outcome in a thrilling contest, with Firmino’s intervention ensuring Arsene Wenger is yet to beat Klopp’s Liverpool in five attempts.
After throwing away another lead, Liverpool stay fourth – a point and a place above Arsenal – but the dreadful defending from both sides indicated they will struggle for Champions League qualification without improvement at the back.
388 – There were just 388 seconds between Liverpool going 2-0 ahead and Arsenal taking the lead to make it 3-2. Rapid.
Key Opta Stats:
– There have been 27 goals scored in the last five Premier League meetings between these teams (10 for Arsenal, 17 for Liverpool) at an average of 5.4 per game.
– Liverpool have scored 54 away goals in all competitions in 2017, their most in a calendar year since 1982 (66).
– Arsenal have conceded seven goals in two league games against Liverpool this season – in only one Premier League campaign have they conceded more against an opponent (10 v Man Utd in 2011-12).
– Since Jurgen Klopp’s first Premier League match in charge in October 2015, Liverpool’s games have seen 279 goals scored (174 for, 105 against), more than any other club.
– Phillipe Coutinho has been involved in 16 goals in 11 away matches across all competitions (nine goals, seven assists).
– Roberto Firmino has been involved in eight goals in his last five Premier League appearances against Arsenal (five goals, three assists).