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Man Utd 1-1 Arsenal: Aubameyang earns Gunners a point

By Phil McNultyBBC Sport chief football writer at Old Trafford
Arsenal players celebrate
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang became the first Arsenal player to score seven or more goals in the first seven Premier League games of a season since Dennis Bergkamp in 1997-98

Manchester United and Arsenal played out a grim stalemate at Old Trafford that provided compelling evidence to illustrate just how far away from a Premier League challenge both clubs are.

In a disappointing encounter that was a pale shadow of their mighty clashes of years gone by, Scott McTominay gave Manchester United the lead at the end of an attritional first-half with a rising drive from the edge of the area.

Arsenal equalised just before the hour courtesy of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's cool finish. It was originally ruled out for offside but the video assistant referee confirmed the striker had been played onside by Harry Maguire.

Goalkeeper Bernd Leno excelled for Arsenal with fine saves from Maguire and Marcus Rashford's late free-kick, while Bukayo Saka's goalbound shot crucially struck Victor Lindelof and flew over the top.

McTominay also headed a great chance well over from Ashley Young's corner but neither side could force a winner.

The result takes Arsenal into the top four but Manchester United are now down in 10th after an outcome that means they have made their worst start after seven games in 30 years, failing to reach double figures for the first time since 1989-90, a season in which they finished 13th.

How times have changed

The current circumstances of both clubs was instantly demonstrated by the two captains who led out the sides.

Manchester United's captain was 34-year-old Ashley Young, pressed into defensive service by Aaron Wan-Bissaka's absence through injury, and Arsenal were led by Granit Xhaka, newly appointed and a divisive figure among supporters.

Young led from the front in a fashion by regularly contesting decisions, showing a remarkable knack of getting to referee Kevin Friend in an instant on numerous occasions.

Xhaka's night will be best remembered for his contribution to United's goal - getting away with a foul in the build-up before appearing to take evasive action as McTominay's drive made its way into the top corner.

There was no shortage of effort but this was a scrappy mess of a game, lacking any cohesion or quality.

United had the edge on chances, although they were grateful to David de Gea for a fine double save from Saka and Matteo Guendouzi in the first half and they also felt they had a respectable appeal for handball against Sead Kolasinac ignored by referee Kevin Friend.

Arsenal boss Unai Emery will be more satisfied than counterpart Ole Gunnar Solskjaer with a point but this showed just how far away both are from leaders Liverpool and reigning champions Manchester City - and just how much work they have to do to catch up.

Tough night for Pepe

It was no surprise when Arsenal's club record £72m signing Nicholas Pepe failed to last the course, being substituted for Reiss Nelson after 72 minutes.

The 24-year-old signing from Lille had struggled desperately throughout and looks worryingly short of confidence so soon after his introduction into the Premier League.

Pepe had one clear shooting opportunity in the first half but skied his effort hopelessly into the Stretford End. He was on the periphery of the action in a laboured performance also littered with poor decision-making.

It was left to the lethal Aubameyang to provide the finishing touch for Arsenal, correctly assisted by VAR after technology showed he was clearly onside.

Solksjaer appeared to think the linesman's raised flag made his players stop but it was clearly the correct decision as Maguire loitered yards behind his defensive colleagues.

Premier League table
Manchester United (nine) and Arsenal's (12) combined points tally is level with league leaders Liverpool on 21

'It is a steep learning curve'

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: "How many times have we have been 1-0 up and not got the second goal? This is a steep learning curve for us and we'll keep working hard and, with more experience, we'll make the right decisions.

"We didn't get out of the blocks quick enough at the start of the second half. It felt like Arsenal were the more proactive until they scored their goal.

"I felt we could get a goal at the end and we sent men forward. I've been in that situation as a player when you come off and think you could've got more out of a game, but we'll learn from this."

Arsenal manager Unai Emery: "I want more - more in the result and in the performance but we are progressing. We were competitive but we can do better. We can control moments with the ball better and take more chances in the box.

"We have young players who can take confidence. Bukayo [Saka] is progressing well but we need other players too. This is not the best in terms of points but one point can be good if we win next Sunday against Bournemouth."

Man of the match - Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (Arsenal)

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
Aubameyang has now scored 14 goals in his last 14 starts in the Premier League for Arsenal

The best of the stats

  • Manchester United's haul of nine points after seven games is their worst tally at this stage of a top-flight season since 1989-90 (7 points).
  • Arsenal are unbeaten in consecutive Premier League games at Old Trafford (D2) for the first time since January 2000.
  • Arsenal (5) had more shots on target than Man Utd (4) in a Premier League game at Old Trafford for the first time since May 2009 (4-0).
  • Manchester United have won 49 points from their 28 Premier League games under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer - two fewer than they won in their final 28 games under Jose Mourinho.
  • McTominay's goal was his first for Manchester United at Old Trafford, in his 25th home game for the club in all competitions.
  • Since his Manchester United debut in February 2016, Rashford has been directly involved in 71 goals for the Red Devils in all competitions (48 goals, 23 assists), eight more than any other player.
  • Saka has registered four goal involvements in just three starts for Arsenal in all competitions this season (1 goal, 3 assists).


Man Utd

Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1de Gea
  • 18YoungBooked at 41mins
  • 2Lindelöf
  • 5Maguire
  • 38Tuanzebe
  • 39McTominay
  • 6Pogba
  • 15PereiraBooked at 32minsSubstituted forGreenwoodat 74'minutes
  • 14LingardBooked at 68minsSubstituted forFredat 74'minutes
  • 21James
  • 10RashfordBooked at 27mins


  • 8Mata
  • 16Rojo
  • 17Fred
  • 22Romero
  • 26Greenwood
  • 31Matic
  • 53Williams


Formation 4-3-3

  • 1Leno
  • 21ChambersBooked at 10mins
  • 5Papastathopoulos
  • 23David Luiz
  • 31Kolasinac
  • 11TorreiraSubstituted forCeballosat 55'minutes
  • 34XhakaBooked at 77mins
  • 29Guendouzi
  • 19PépéSubstituted forNelsonat 74'minutes
  • 14Aubameyang
  • 77SakaSubstituted forWillockat 80'minutes


  • 8Ceballos
  • 15Maitland-Niles
  • 16Holding
  • 24Nelson
  • 26Martínez
  • 28Willock
  • 35Martinelli
Kevin Friend

Match Stats

Home TeamMan UtdAway TeamArsenal
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Manchester United 1, Arsenal 1.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Manchester United 1, Arsenal 1.

  3. Post update

    Foul by Axel Tuanzebe (Manchester United).

  4. Post update

    Reiss Nelson (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  5. Post update

    Foul by Mason Greenwood (Manchester United).

  6. Post update

    Dani Ceballos (Arsenal) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  7. Post update

    Attempt missed. Mason Greenwood (Manchester United) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Fred.

  8. Post update

    Attempt saved. Reiss Nelson (Arsenal) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner. Assisted by Joe Willock.

  9. Post update

    Attempt saved. Marcus Rashford (Manchester United) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

  10. Post update

    Scott McTominay (Manchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  11. Post update

    Foul by David Luiz (Arsenal).

  12. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Scott McTominay (Manchester United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Ashley Young.

  13. Post update

    Daniel James (Manchester United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  14. Post update

    Foul by Calum Chambers (Arsenal).

  15. Post update

    Attempt missed. Dani Ceballos (Arsenal) right footed shot from the centre of the box misses to the right. Assisted by Joe Willock following a fast break.

  16. Post update

    Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Axel Tuanzebe.

  17. Post update

    Corner, Arsenal. Conceded by Axel Tuanzebe.

  18. Post update

    Offside, Arsenal. Joe Willock tries a through ball, but Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is caught offside.

  19. Post update

    Foul by Marcus Rashford (Manchester United).

  20. Post update

    David Luiz (Arsenal) wins a free kick in the defensive half.


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Scores, Results & Fixtures

Monday 30th September 2019

As It Stood

2Man City75112772016
5West Ham7331109112
9Crystal Palace732267-111
10Man Utd72329729
12Sheff Utd72237708
18Aston Villa7124811-35
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