Bournemouth 1 Arsenal 1
Gosling 35, Aubameyang 63

Arsenal came from behind to battle for a point in a 1-1 draw at Bournemouth. Having dominated the early sequence of possession and play, the Gunners were unable to capitalise on their early chances. Pierre-Emerick Aumabeyang was lively but unable to hit the target, with Bukayo Saka and Reiss Nelson also having half chances which should have delivered more. Alexandre Lacazette was put in with a neat ball over the Bournemouth back line, however coming under pressure, the France striker lost his footing at the vital time.

Arsenal looked solid and were playing with the right aggression and fight on a rain sodden and wind-swept Vitality stadium. Trying to play out from the back has been a tactic which new head coach Mikel Arteta seems to also favour and in fairness David Luiz and Sokratis racing out wide for Bend Leno to find had been worked confidently early on. However, when left back Saka lost possession, Callum Wilson fed Jack Stacey who then nipped in to the vacant space to cross for the unmarked Dan Gosling to score the game’s opener.

Having claimed their first point since Arteta’s appointment in the 0-0 at Everton last week-end, this was the former Arsenal midfielder’s first outing in the dug out and his instructions were timely and loud. He has already been able to stabilise a creaking side, and Aubameyang was always going to be key to the Gunners all over the pitch. Nelson will be a great addition in the near future, but here his right sided cross / shot selection will require further analysis on how best to utilise his abundant talent. It was a Nelson’s placed effort which deflected into the path of Auabameyang to place in the leveller beyond Ramsadale.

Luiz had fired in some dissecting balls to the Gunners front line, as heads Granit Chaka, and from one such passes, Lacazette looked odds on to get the Gunners’ second, until the Cherries covering defender intervened from literally out of nowhere to deflect the ball for a corner. Both sided tried to find a winner, but had to settle for a point which Arteta, although frustrated was nevertheless pleased to see his side gain point.

“ I’m very pleased with some of the things I’ve seen, in terms of attitude, character, the passion we showed, and the fight and spirit the team showed. It was spot on. Probably better than I expected over 90 minutes. A lot of things that happened in the game, we prepared. They understood them and they tried to take them on board. We lacked the final product at the end,” said Arteta.

Arteta was also pleased with Ozil’s contribution and will be watching the mercurial German for more telling contributions. Words at half time inspired the leveller and Arteta will want more of the same.

“It will be a process. I was worried what would happen if we conceded a goal. We did and I was very pleased with the character they showed. They came in at half-time and their faces, their reactions [were spot on]. It was about how much they wanted it. Normally, when you are in this process and you concede a goal, the confidence goes down and a lot of things that have happened in the past can come back. It didn’t happen, it happened in the complete opposite sense and that’s a really positive thing to take on board.”

The festive fixtures come thick and fast, and Arteta will be aiming for his first Premier League win when Chelsea arrive at the Emirates stadium on Sunday.