Full-time - 90'
1 - 1
12:45 +00:00, February 26, 2005
St. Mary's Stadium, England
Referee: A Wiley
Four or five exceptional saves from Smith rescued Southampton from some strong attacking by Arsenal. A precious point for Saints, but for Arsenal the title challenge must now surely be dead and buried.
And that's full time. 1-1!
Ljnugberg's ball found Cole fractionally offside - he finished well with an unorthodox header, but he was offside. Cole sits on the floor and stares at the linesman. Not happy.
Ashley Cole scores...No OFFSIDE GIVEN!!!!
Credit to Arsenal who are fighting to the death - they are not willing to accept defeat
What a save by Smith!! Man of the match! he made a great save from Henry who had got himself into a superb goal-scoring and matching winning position!
Good work by Cygan - defending against Delap
Clichy fouls Delap and Saints will pump it deep toward Crouch
Smith taking his time with the goalkick - 3 minutes of stoppage time signalled
Arsenal are throwing everything at Saints - but good work from Delap
Great work by the tireless Crouch to hold the ball and win Southampton a throw
Arsenal pressing in the last few minutes - they want the winner
More resolute, if a tad desperate, defending from Saints - lots of pround girlfriends if thier work results in a point against Arsenal!
Great work on the right wing by Telfer, he crossed for Crouch but even the lanky striker was unable to reach it in time to get a header on target - but a great move
What a chance for Saints! Wasted!
Another superb save from Smith - this time his left hand was strong enough to block a strong drive from Ashley Cole
It's a straight swap - striker for striker
Here comes Kevin Phillips - he is on for Henri Camara, who has had a great game
From the kick Crouch sets up Camara with a shooting chance, but his shot is from a difficult angle and is out for a Lehmann goalkick
Another over-hit ball from the right wing gifts Smith a goalkick
Flamini and Vieira link-up well - they obviously work well together.
The corner is wasted - Arsenal win another freekick, which is deflected out for another corner...which again is wasted!
And from the freekick Paul Smith makes an extraordinary save - pushing over the ball which looked set for the top corner
Foul by Redknapp and its a freekick for Arsenal 35 yards out which Henry will take
What a mistake it was by Lehmann for the Saints equaliser - he is becoming a pantomime villan for the Gunners!
Vieira, Flamini and Ljungberg link up well but the final ball is too long and Southampton get a goalkick
Offside given against Crouch - close call
Eboue quicklu into the game; helping Arsenal win a corner
A change for Arsenal: Off goes Toure and on comes Emmanuel Eboue
It's just not happening for Arsenal. Flamini pulled a ball back for Ljungberg byt Bernard was on hand with a great tackle. The ball then fell to Henry but he wanted too many touches and his eventual shot was weak
Referee Alan Wiley collides with Ljungberg and sends the Swede to the deck - red card for Wiley?
Henry tries his luck from range - but his curler aimed at the far post fails to come back and its a goalkick
Substitution for Saints: Off goes Le Saux and in his stead comes former Luton Town player, Paul Telfer.
Vieira tries to take on two in the Saints half and promptly loses the ball
Great play from Crouch - Crouch beats Senderos to the long-ball and fires in a shot from range which was just wide
Comical really, but the game has been stolen away from Arsenal and they have been masters of their own downfall in the second half. The needless red card and terrible set-peice defending.
Yet more terrible goalkeeping from Arsenal and Lehmann!! The German came of his line and missed the ball totally. Crouch climbed highest (obviously), the ball hit him on the back of the head and bounced up and over the two men on the line.
Goal for Southampton and Crouch!!
Corner for Saints...
Henry's oh-so-cool on the ball attitude bites him on the bum! He tries to trick his way through three defenders in the box, stopped, put his foot on the ball. The defender was not prepared to let the pose continue and kicked the ball away. All when Cole was available for a pass.
Ljungberg tries to beat Bernard for pace but fails and has to check back
Now Arsenal win a corner. Henry takes it along the ground; Cygan swings his leg at the ball, but Smith saves easily.
Crouch puts Senderos and Toure under-pressure and wins Southampton a thorw, good work rate from Crouch
Lundekvam, Quashie and Redknapp with some good pass-and-move for Saints
Long throw from Delap in an attacking position, but Lehmann comes off his line to claim
Good strong work from Camara to win a throw from Cygan
Great ball from Cole for Henry whose first touch deserts him and allows Delap to clear - superb pass
Lovely ball from Vieira out wide to Toure - who looked to handle it
Good work from Cole defending well despite the attentions of Camara and Crouch
Lehmann comes off his line to clear the threat - poor communication between him and Cygan
Clichy gives the ball away to Le Saux and Arsenal break
Somehow Delap ends up with Clichy in a headlock... freekick!
Superb solo skills for Henry carves a chance on goal for Ljungberg, but Smith saves
And van Persie will be another player suspended! Which with existing suspensions and injuries leaves Arsenal threadbare. Wenger will be furious.
Van Persie makes it 58 players sent off during Wenger tenure - though its the first red card for Arsenal in 14 months... there you go stat fans!
A bit of argy-bargy while Le Saux has treatment - Vieira and Quashie getting involved. The ref has a word and Henry plays peacemaker.
Robin van Persie, already on a yellow card, lost the ball and dove in on Le Saux and he's gone! Now its 10 players each! Game-on!
Oh dear - Van Persie sent off!!
From the resulting corner Southampton fail to clear and Arsenal press
Neat attack from Arsenal saw van Persie slip a ball into Henry, but Smith saved with his feet - excellent stuff
Superb save from Smith!
Looks like a 4-3-2 for Saints - Harry will hope Olivier Bernard and Rory Delap can press down the flanks, wing-back style to add forward options
Gary Lewin the Arsenal physio thinks Pires will miss the next three games. He is understood to have a cut on his ankle and is set for x-rays to check for a break. Deperate news for Arsenal.
How will Harry play it now he has 10 men. Keep 2 men up to challenge the error-prone Cygan? Or for 1 up and keep a fuller team at the back?
OK, here we go with the second half...
Other than that(!) it's been a good game, end-to-end, a few chances and Arsenal marginally on top. Southampton were playing well, but with 10 men it will be tough for them now. Keep it here for the second half.
Prutton was on thin ice after the first yellow, but then the challenge on Pires - he had to go, no question, so why he reacted so angrily is anyone's guess. He is not a dirty player so the tackle and reaction were out of character.
Well, what a half! Just the one goal but plenty of incident and no little controversy.
And that's half-time...
Sub for Arsenal - Pires cannot continue and on in his place comes Gael Clichy.
Ashely Cole's shot from range was blocked and fell to Henry who held the ball well before mis-hitting a shot into the path of Freddie Ljungberg who tapped in.
Goal for Arsenal!!
The home fans booing every Arsenal touch - difficult to see why given that they were the side who had ill done to them
Toure tries a shot but its blocked
That incident means both teams are down to 10 men in the last few minutes of the half
Prutton is furious with the linesman, who the ref spoke to before deciding on the card. He is pushing and shoving the ref to get at the linesman and tell him what he thinks. He'll be in trouble for that. Harry Redknapp steps in and drags Prutton away. Meanwhile, Pires is on a stretcher and will surely play no further part.
Prutton is sent off for a second yellow. A dangerous and late tackle on Pires who is lucky not to get a broken ankle.
As the game, which has been one of classic Premiership tempo, draws towards half time Prutton is in trouble for another tackle...
Quashie, Le Saux and Camara all combining well under-pressure from three Arsenal players to hold the ball
Quashie with another crunching tackle - foul given for the challenge on Vieira
Pires does well to control a difficult ball from Ljungberg, but fails to use it
It may have snowed this week, but no sign of wintery conditions at St Mary's - no gloves on any of the players, they do feel the cold... softies
Arsenal with three quick shots following Lehmann's throw - Vieira and Henry all involved, but eventually the offside flag goes up
Well-worked training ground freekick from Saints - Redknapp aimed a ball deep towards Crouch, he headed down but Lehmann saved
The game being stretched at the moment - Southampton pressing and leaving gaps at the back which Arsenal are trying to exploit - but fierce tackling is slowing them down
David Prutton gets a yellow card for a late an dangerous tackle on Flamini - he held his hand up knwoing he'd done wrong, but the booking was right.
Le Saux overhits a ball towards the back post - wasteful again
Toure climbs all over Le Saux - freekick
Route-one nearly lead Southampton to score. From the freekick a long-ball was floated in towards Crouch, he headed it down to Camara whose shot was saved well by Lehmann
Yellow card for Robin van Persie with a clumsy challenge on Delap which included a rather unpleasant elbow in Rory's face - no need, rightly booked.
van Persie shakes of the attentions of Nigel Quashie and spreads the ball out wide to Lungberg
Wasteful by van Persie - good passing movement was let down by the final ball there
More stern stuff from Jamie - foul given
Crouch unlucky to not have any support - he got his head to a ball from Rory Delap, but he was marked by Senderos and Toure and had no-one up with him.
Ah, now Alan Wiley calls Redknapp over for a word on his tackles. Ashley Cole (no robust Rugby player he) complained about a tackle and the Ref responded
More tackles flying in - Redknapp on Vieira, but the refs waves play-on
A poor clearance by former Brentford keeper PauL Smith allows Henry the chance to gather the ball and press down the left wing - but his final ball was neither a cross nor a shot and the Saints keeper has another chance to clear
Sendeross with a calm header into touch - he was underpressure and had no support at the back, but he handled it well
Jakobsen with another good challenge to stem an Arsenal charge
Toure, of course, had an absolute shocker in Munich earlier this week and will be looking for strong showing today to ease his conscience!
Arsenal look accusingly at Toure who wastes possession by launching a long-ball toward Henry - Smith was off his line to claim.
Strangley for a team in Southampton precarious position, they haven't lost a home game in the league since September - 5 months and 10 matches
Toure, Lungberg and Flamini link-up well to create a chance for van Persie - he rolled a defender on the edge of the box before firing in a shot, but Paul Smith in the Saints goal saved.
Le Saux whips in a shot from the free-kick, but Lehmann was covering his near post and gathered with ease
Typical! Arsenal give away a foul and Saints get a foothold in Arsenal territory
Arsenal have got control of the game in the middle of the park - they are starting to spread play. Even when they attacks breakdown, Southampton can't hold it.
Andreas Jakobsen with a good tackle to rob Pires of the ball
Freekick given against Henry - he lost the ball and clattered into both Crouch and Flamini to try and win it back. Sadly for him he fouled both players and lost the ball.
Arsenal turning on the style up the pitch - neat one-touch passing
Camara nearly exploited Arsenal's high defensive line; the lively Camara getting in behind the defenders, but Senderos was back to check his run - good defending from Arsenal (we don't say that much theses days!)
Great defending by Claus Lundekvam - he perfectly judged a pass from Ashley Cole aimed at Henry. Without his interception Henry was in on goal.
Crunching tackles flying in - good to see full-blooded elephant-sized tackles flying in!
Confusion! The linesman signalled a foul against Cygan for a challenge on Camara, but the ref ignores it. Not good enough Mr Wiley.
Ljungberg, Pires and Henry exchange passes - no end result, but it looked good.
Phillipe Senderos under-pressure from Camara passes all the way back to Lehmann - good defending from the front from Saints
Van Persie squanders a goalscoring opporunity. His shot was poor, missing the target after Henry laid on a perfect defence-splitting ball
Very quick tempo to the game so far - classic end to end stuff: both teams anxious to dominate
Redknapp floats the ball in toward beanpole Crouch - but Cygan atones for his earlier mistake and clears
At the other end a corner for Southampton
Decent work on the left flank with Ashley Cole and Robin van Persie link well - but Delap gets stuck in and clears
A first touch for Henry, who has dropped deep
Poor corner but Arsenal fail to clear. Camara making a nuisance of himself and causing confusion at the back. Vieira misjudges a header, but Lehmann eventually gathers.
Almost a nightmare start for Arsenal with Cygan make a mistake at the back and allowing Henri Camara a shot on goal - Corner ball...
Referee Alan Wiley blows the whistle and gets us underway
Surely this is Southampton best chance of beating Arsenal after the week the Gunners' have had - but Harry Redknapp's team must beware the wounded; Arsenal will be hoping to rise to the occasion.
For Arsenal: Lehmann, Toure, Senderos, Cygan, Cole, Ljungberg, Vieira, Flamini, Pires, Henry, Van Persie. And on the bench: Taylor, Lauren, Eboue, Clichy, Aliadiere.
Minutes from kick-off and St Mary's and the teams are in. For Southampton: Smith, Delap, Lundekvam, Jakobsson, Bernard, Prutton, Redknapp, Quashie, Le Saux, Camara, Crouch. On the subs bench: Phillips, Higginbotham, Poke, Telfer, Davenport.
Graeme Le Saux
Robin Van Persie