London, England, United Kingdom (4E Sports) – Olivier Giroud scored the game’s lone goal in the second half as Arsenal remained on top of the Premier League with a 1-0 win over Newcastle Sunday at St James’ Park.
Giroud glanced in Theo Walcott’s free kick in the 65th minute to end a personal drought of 499 minutes without a Premier League goal, a run dating back to Nov. 23.
Arsenal had a chance to double its lead but Walcott’s lob was headed onto the bar by a backtracking Mathieu Debuchy.
With nine minutes left, Newcastle almost tied the count but Wojciech Szczesny’s attempt rolled wide of the goalmouth.
“We got a big physical challenge today. Overall I felt that we were in control of the game until we scored the 1-0. We missed a second chance that would have certainly sealed the game,” said Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.
The victory saw the Gunners move a point clear of Manchester City at the top, but Chelsea is just two points behind the leader after a 2-1 win over Liverpool at Stamford Bridge.
Liverpool was ahead after just four minutes behind Martin Skrtel’s close-range goal but Chelsea tied the game after Eden Hazard’s goal from 20 yards.
Samuel Eto’o then put Chelsea ahead just past the half-hour mark when his six-yard shot went past Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet.
Liverpool was robbed of an opportunity to tie the game after referee Howard Webb waved off an apparent penalty on a kick to Luis Suarez in the second half.
In other games, Everton defeated Southampton, 2-1, at Goodison Park to overtake Liverpool for fourth place while Tottenham defeated Stoke City, 3-0.
Seamus Coleman struck in the ninth minute after cutting inside James Ward-Prowse and firing his shot into the top corner but Gaston Ramirez tied the count in the 71st minute.
Three minutes later, Romelu Lukaku pounced onto James McCarthy’s pass to put Everton back in front.