Arsenal 2 Hull City 2
( Sanchez 13, Welbeck 90, Diame 17, Hernandez 46 )

Arsenal were pegged back by a resolute and stubbornly organised Hull City whose football, at times inventive, was at other times very close to the wrong side of the law. That said, Alexis Sanchez gave the Gunners a stunning opener, deservedly so on the balance of play. Failure to capitalise on their numerous chances to double their advantage, would fray the nerves of the Arsenal faithful. Hull and Mohamed Diame fully took advantage. Diame levelled but a clear foul on Mathieu Flamini wasn’t spotted by referee Roger East.

Despite protests from several Arsenal players Diame’s neat finish over Wojciech Szczesny stood, and seconds after the restart, Abel Hernandez hushed the Emirates crowd with a firm header as the visitors stole a lead. Time wasting and gamesmanship by Hull would come to cost them however, as seconds into a massive six minutes of time added on, Danny Welbeck grabbed a leveller for Wenger’s side. Arsenal surged forward for the last remaining few minutes, but try as they might, they would not get the winner their football deserved.

Wenger was forced to play Nacho Monreal in a central back pairing alongside Per Mertersacker. With Calum Chambers suspended, Hector Bellerin was entrusted at right back. After starting in a deeper role for England, Jack Wilshere lined up in that role at the Emirates, and should’ve given the Gunners the lead after five minutes. Sanchez crossed from the right, but as he arrived on time, Wilshere’s header lacked power and direction.

A minute later and more Arsenal pressure saw firstly Wilshere and then Sanchez denied by double quick reflex saves from Steve Harper. The Hull keeper had to be at full stretch moments later. Santi Cazorla twisted and turned past Jake Livermore to unleash a curling shot, which was tipped over the bar by Harper’s acrobatic dive.

The Arsenal momentum continued and Hull’s defences were finally breached after 13 minutes. Mertersscker found Sanchez, and the Chilean bamboozled Curtis Davies to let fly with a low shot which flew past Harper.

The Gunners were dominant and should have made their football pay, as the visitors’ back line was continually stretched. However it was they who got back on level terms and in somewhat controversial circumstances. Flamini tracked back for the ball, but despite pulling him back, Diame was allowed to hustle past the Arsenal defence and beat Szczesny for the leveller. Wenger looked horrified, at the injustice, as his players switched off anticipating a referee’s whistle, which never came.

Having had Nikica Jelevic injured in the pre match warm up, Hull had to withdraw Harper, who suffered a bicep injury. On came Eldin Jakupovic. His first taste of action was to push out Welbeck’s low effort, but despite the loose ball, the Gunners were unable to pounce.

Moments after the restart, Hull took a shock lead. Tom Huddlestone crossed to Hernandez to head past Szczesny. The mostly inexperienced Arsenal defence, and the experienced Mertersacker, who should’ve challenged Hernandez looked shocked.

There was no need for Hull to slow the game down, with a spate of conceding trivial free kicks and players, Michael Dawson in particular feigning injury. Sanchez however continued with same verve and determination. He tracked back and tackled when he was over run, and his level of play epitomises what Wenger needs to get from all his players. Only a last gasp block denied Sanchez and Arsenal as the red and white shirts surged forwards to in search of parity once more.

Aaron Ramsey and Joel Campbell came on and linked up well as the clock ticked away. Monreal reverted to a wing back to provide a beautiful cross which Sanchez headed with power, only to see Jakupovic save.

Six minutes of time added on were signalled and Arsenal were in danger of suffering a first home Premiership loss of the season. Sanchez wasn’t about to give up though, and his run to take out three Hull defenders allowed him to pick out Welbeck. The England marksman was coolness personified as he struck his fifth club goal of the season for a 2-2 scoreline.

Late chances to Cazorla and Kieran Gibbs went begging. Arsenal dropped another two points at home, but despite the result, will take some heart from their latent battling qualities.