Substitute Olivier Giroud rose high to head home a late equaliser to ensure Arsenal managed to hold Manchester United to a 1-1 draw in a high-octane English Premier League clash on Saturday.
The hosts will feel the result was akin to a defeat, such was their dominance in the final third of the pitch. In fact, United goalkeeper David de Gea didn't have a single save to make before Giroud’s 89th minute header.
United had the vast majority of chances as Jose Mourinho’s men executed his plan almost perfectly, stifling the likes of Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil without much difficulty.
A surprise considering the fact that Arsenal have been free-scoring of late and with a strong line-up with just Carl Jenkinson replacing regular Hector Bellerin, one almost feared for United. Sanchez, so often their difference-maker, was clearly not match-fit, playing with a heavily bandaged right thigh.
The sides went into the interval deadlocked, and Petr Cech was the man to thank for that fact, making two crucial saves to keep his side in the game. First Juan Mata’s low shot was tipped around the corner, and later Anthony Marital’s curler was tipped over the bar.
United weren't to be denied after the break however, dominating their opponents in a similar fashion as they did in the first period.
Paul Pogba who gave a composed performance in the middle of the pitch, released the energetic Ander Herrera on the wing and the Spaniard’s cut-back was guided into the back of the net with precise accuracy by the onrushing Mata in the 68th minute.
No less than what United deserved and while they came close to adding a second twice after their opener, somehow they could not finish the game off. Marcos Rojo in particular, was guilty of an easy miss, somehow unable to keep a free head on target.
And United were left to rue their profligacy as Arsenal started to press for an equaliser.
Arsene Wenger threw on the mercurial Alex Oxlade Chamberlain and the burly Olivier Giroud to force the result and the two combined with devastating effect in the 89th minute, grabbing a equaliser which leaves their title credentials intact.
Chamberlain skipped past a tiring Marcus Rashford on the wing and sent in a doozy of a cross and Giroud responded in kind with a well-placed header which left David de Gea with no chance.
United’s inability to finish the game off will worry Mourinho, as it is not the first time this season they have conceded a late equaliser. They remain in sixth place but could slip to seventh should Everton beat Swansea later on Saturday.
Arsenal will go back to London content with a result which feels like a win and rise to third in the table, albeit provisionally considering they have played a game extra than fourth-placed Manchester city.