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      Report: Palace defeated by Arsenal

      Gabriel Magalhães 11' 37'
      Trossard 59'
      Gabriel Martinelli 90+4' 90+5'
      Crystal Palace

      Goals either side of half-time saw Palace slip to defeat at the home of title-challengers Arsenal.


      • Hodgson makes two changes, with Henderson and Mateta coming in.
      • Gabriel opens the scoring for the hosts, rising highest to meet an inswinging corner.
      • Lerma’s swerving half-volley forces Raya into a save at full stretch.
      • Arsenal double their advantage from another corner.
      • HT: Arsenal 2-0 Palace
      • Eze strikes towards the bottom corner, with Raya pushing behind.
      • Trossard adds a third on the counter-attack.
      • Richards nods over in added time.
      • Martinelli strokes in a fourth, before adding his second and Arsenal’s fifth minutes later.
      • FT: Arsenal 5-0 Palace

      Goals from Gabriel, Leandro Trossard, Gabriel Martinelli (two) and an unfortunate own goal gave the Gunners all three points.

      Arsenal, on the back of three consecutive defeats in all competitions, started the game with the urgency warranted by their situation, and the palpable sense of tension as the players emerged only grew as the game got underway.

      The hosts dominated the early possession, with Palace setting up with the same five-man defensive unit as midweek: Chris Richards slotted in alongside Joachim Andersen and Marc Guéhi, with Will Hughes and Jefferson Lerma marshalling central midfield.

      Chances were few and far between, with Gabriel Jesus firing over the top, before a moment of brilliance unlocked the visitors' defence.

      Oleksandr Zinchenko's inch-perfect through ball found Leandro Trossard, who won a corner; from the resulting set-piece Gabriel rose highest to power a header past Dean Henderson and into the back of the net.

      Danger from set-pieces has been a major source of joy for Arsenal this season, and moments later there was almost another opening as Guéhi's header clear struck Lerma and deflected up into the upright.

      The Eagles recovered from the early setback to enjoy their best period of possession so far, winning a free-kick on the edge of the penalty via the ever-dangerous Ebere Eze. The England man picked himself up to take, denied by the wall, before Nathaniel Clyne's effort took a wicked deflection and was scrambled clear.

      Palace stayed forwards, and when David Raya's mishit clearance dropped at the feet of Lerma 30-yards out he unleashed a dipping, swerving half-volley towards the bottom corner which the Arsenal’ keeper had to be at full-stretch to parry behind.

      Just as Palace looked to be gathering a head of steam, Arsenal struck again - and again, a set-piece paid off. Gabriel was at the centre of the action for the second time, heading down into the ground where the ball struck Henderson on its way in.

      Lerma and Trossard had chances just before half-time, the former forcing Raya into an unorthodox save and the latter firing wide. Palace had plenty to do at the break.

      There was certainly a renewed vigour around the visitors when they emerged, with Eze's low, driven shot palmed behind by Raya.

      As Palace pushed, the space in behind grew and from a rapid counter-attack Arsenal had a third. It was one end to the other in the blink of an eye, as Raya's quick-thinking brought the Gunners forward, Jesus squared and Trossard was there to smash home.

      Still the Eagles pushed, as Eze forced Raya into yet another stop from a well-struck free-kick.

      Hodgson introduced 18-year-old David Ozoh and later 19-year-old Matheus França as the half wore on, but Arsenal’s dominance of possession meant chances to break forwards were at a premium.

      In added time, Arsenal struck twice in quick succession, with Gabriel Martinelli - who had been introduced as a second-half substitute - stroking home twice to complete a strong afternoon's work for the Gunners.

      Full-time brought relief for Mikel Arteta and Arsenal but frustration for Palace, for whom a 10-day break awaits before the visit of Sheffield United to Selhurst Park at the end of January.

      Arsenal: Raya (GK), White, Saliba, Gabriel (Kiwior, 81) Zinchenko, Rice (Jorginho, 74), Havertz (Smith Rowe, 69), Odegaard, Trossard (Martinelli, 69), Jesus (Nketiah, 81) Saka.

      Subs not used: Ramsdale (GK), Cedric, Nelson, Walters.

      Palace: Henderson (GK), Clyne (Ahamada, 76), Richards, Andersen, Guéhi (Tomkins, 87), Mitchell, Lerma, Hughes (Ozoh, 68), Schlupp (França, 76), Eze, Mateta.

      Subs not used: Johnstone (GK), Edouard, Ebiowei, Riedewald, Adaramola.

      As It Happened