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Lacazette double helps Arsenal see off West Brom

Lacazette double helps Arsenal see off West Brom

LONDON: Arsenal kept up their 100 percent home record this season with a 2-0 win over West Bromwich Albion in the Premier League on Monday, with new club record signing Alexandre Lacazette grabbing both the goals.

West Brom had lost on their previous six visits to the Gunners but started the match brightly and were even denied a penalty after only seven minutes of play.

Gareth Barry, appearing in a record 633rd Premier League fixture and the Baggies’ captain for the night, released the ball to Jay Rodriguez in the area who cut back and was brought down by defender Shkodran Mustafi.

However, no foul was given by referee Bobby Madley, much to the frustration of manager Tony Pulis on the touchline and Rodriguez himself.

“For me I felt contact and I went down and I was waiting for the foul to be given but it wasn’t,” the striker told Sky Sports. “For me it was a penalty, but you get them and you don’t... It’s difficult when it’s 0-0 and if you get the decision you can get a goal which changes the game.”

Arsene Wenger’s side took the lead after 20 minutes, Lacazette heading in after goalkeeper Ben Foster had pushed Alexis Sanchez’s free-kick on to the bar.

The goal meant that the close season signing from Lyon became the first Arsenal player to score in his opening three home fixtures in the league since Brian Marwood in 1988.

Arsenal’s lead was preserved before halftime when Rodriguez’s header beat goalkeeper Petr Cech but Nacho Monreal produced a goal-line clearance.

Lacazette was on target again from the penalty spot in the 67th after Allan Nyom fouled Aaron Ramsey, giving the France forward his fourth goal in an Arsenal shirt since his club record £52 million ($70 million, 59 million euros) move.

“He gets stronger in every game. Good first touch and movement,” Gunners manager Wenger said of Lacazette. “West Brom disturbed our build up in the first half but in the second half we controlled the game and did not give anything away.”

Welshman Ramsey was also full of praise for his new free-scoring team-mate.

“Lacazette is fantastic. He has lovely touches and knows where the back of the net is,” he said.

Arsenal moved up to seventh in the league on 10 points, six behind both Manchester clubs at the top. West Brom dropped to 12th and have now gone five games without a win in all competitions.

The Gunners can continue their home run on Sunday against Brighton and Hove Albion, a day after West Brom host Watford.

Published in Dawn, September 27th, 2017

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