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Rice wins it late for Arsenal

2023-12-06 HKT 09:25
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  • Rice's goal in the 97th minute sparked wild celebrations. Photo: AP
    Rice's goal in the 97th minute sparked wild celebrations. Photo: AP
Arsenal moved five points clear at the top of the Premier League after Declan Rice's last-gasp goal capped the leaders' thrilling fightback in their 4-3 win against Luton on Tuesday.

Rocked by a pair of costly blunders from keeper David Raya, Mikel Arteta's side trailed 3-2 in the second half of a pulsating clash at Kenilworth Road.

But Arsenal roared back to consolidate their lead at the top of the table thanks to Kai Havertz's equaliser and Rice's header deep into stoppage-time.

The wild celebrations from Arteta and his players underlined the significance of a gritty escape that will fuel the belief Arsenal can finally win their first title since 2004.

"I'm so happy. We knew it would be a big battle here, we made it hard for ourselves the way we conceded the goals," Arteta said.

"The spirit of the team, how we fought, showed our quality in the right moments and never gave up. We went for it and got our rewards today.

Gabriel Martinelli had opened the scoring for Arsenal, with Luton's Gabriel Osho equalising and Gabriel Jesus restoring the visitors' advantage just before half-time.

Elijah Adebayo scored Luton's second equaliser soon after half-time thanks to the first of Raya's mistakes and Ross Barkley benefitted from another error from the Spaniard.

But England midfielder Rice had the last word to give Arsenal six successive wins in all competitions since their controversial VAR-aided defeat at Newcastle.

In Tuesday's other game, Hwang Hee-chan sealed Wolves' 1-0 win against Burnley at Molineux.

Hwang's ninth goal of the season settled the affair when he netted in the 42nd minute, teed up by Matheus Cunha after Burnley surrendered possession too easily.

Burnley remain second bottom after an eighth defeat in their last nine games, while Wolves, who recorded a first clean-sheet since August, climb to 12th place. (AFP)

Rice wins it late for Arsenal