Arsenal kept alive their hopes of claiming a 14th league title with an injury time victory at the Emirates Stadium over Premier League leaders Leicester City. It was the last league game for Arsène Wenger’s team before the first leg of their Champions League last 16 tie against FC Barcelona on 23 February and the vital win will give the Gunners an important boost ahead of the game in London with the blaugranes.
The clash with Claudio Ranieri’s team, the surprise package of the season so far, began with the visitors striking first. In form Jamie Vardy scored from the penalty spot just a minute before the break after he himself had been brought down inside the area by Monreal.
With Leicester leading 1-0 at half time, 10 minutes after the restart the Londoners were handed a lifeline when Simpson was dismissed for a second yellow card. Arsenal went on the offensive with the extra man and when substitute Theo Walcott leveled things up after a lay off from Giroud, the momentum swung in favour of the home side.
The Gunners piled on the pressure in the final 20 minutes but could not find a way through a disciplined Leicester rearguard. Just when it seemed both side would have to settle for a point, another substitute in Danny Welbeck headed home the winner from a free kick deep into injury time for a vitally important strike in his first game back after six months out due to injury.
Arsenal are now just two points behind leaders Leicester in the table with 12 games of the league season remaining. Next weekend Arsenal are in FA Cup action again Hull City on Saturday.