Arsenal tops Liverpool, cuts Reds’ Premier League lead to two points

Liverpool’s lead atop the Premier League now stands at just two points following Sunday’s 3-1 loss to Arsenal in London — a result that puts Manchester City in the driver’s seat to hoist the trophy for the fourth straight year.

The Gunners dominated from kickoff at the Emirates Stadium, with Bukayo Saka opening the scoring for the hosts just 14 minutes in. Mikel Arteta’s side seemed well on their way to victory as the first half wore on, only for an own goal just before halftime by Arsenal defender Gabriel Magalhães to send the two squads to the dressing rooms on even terms.

But Arsenal reclaimed its lead after the break following a collision between Liverpool keeper Alisson Becker and defender Virgil van Dijk. Gabriel Martinelli was there to pounce on the loose ball which, with Alisson on the ground, he rolled into an empty net. Liverpool defender Ibrahima Konaté was later shown a red card for his second caution of the game before second-half substitute Leandro Trossard added Arsenal’s third goal in stoppage time, capping the visitors’ miserable day.

Arsenal’s triumph was enough for the Gunners to leapfrog City into sole possession of second place behind the Reds. But third-place City has played two fewer games than either Liverpool or Arsenal. The Sky Blues visit Brentford on Monday, a match Pep Guardiola’s side is heavily favored to win.

City would pull back level on points with Arsenal if they do.  They’d also control their own destiny as far as retaining the title. Liverpool’s loss — just its second of the season in league play — on Sunday means that should Guardiola & Co. win all 17 of their remaining matches and Jürgen Klopp’s Reds win each of their last 15, City would claim the Premier League crown by a single point. Liverpool and Manchester City face each other for the final time this season on March 9 at Anfield. 

Man City has won five of the last six English titles. Liverpool beat City out in 2019, its lone win since 1990. Arsenal last finished atop the Prem twenty years ago this year.

Doug McIntyre is a soccer writer for FOX Sports. Before joining FOX Sports in 2021, he was a staff writer with ESPN and Yahoo Sports and he has covered United States men’s and women’s national teams at multiple FIFA World Cups. Follow him on Twitter @ByDougMcIntyre.

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