Arsenal 2, Burnley 1
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger apologised after appearing to push fourth official Anthony Taylor as his 10-man team snatched the latest of wins from a heated Premier League contest with Burnley.
Wenger clashed with Taylor after being sent to the stands by referee Jon Moss for protesting Burnley’s 92nd-minute penalty award, which allowed Andre Gray to equalise.
But his mood mellowed after the Gunners, who had Granit Xhaka sent off, won a spot kick of their own in the seventh minute of added time and Alexis Sanchez coolly converted.
Victory lifted Arsenal into second place and boosted their faint hopes of pursuing Chelsea, although Wenger could yet face disciplinary action from the Football Association for his pitch-side altercation.
What Wenger said
“I regret everything. I should have shut up, gone in and gone home. I apologise for that,” Wenger said.
“It was nothing bad. I said something that you hear every day in football. Nine times out of 10, you are not sent to the stand for that. If I am, I am, and I should have shut up completely.
“I didn’t know if I was sent to the stand but I was sent out. I thought I could watch it from the corridor. I went inside and watched it on television.”
What Dyche said
Burnley manager Sean Dyche insisted Arsenal’s penalty should not have been given due to an offside after seeing his team succumb to an injury-time Gunners winner for the second time this season.
The Clarets, who slipped to 13th, have taken just one point from 10 away games.
“To lose a game in that fashion, with an offside not given, is tough, particularly when you come to tough places like this,” Dyche said.
“We know how tough this division is but you need officials to make the right decisions and that is the shame today.”
Xhaka facing four-match ban
Xhaka’s straight red card was his second of the season – both awarded by Moss – and came in the 65th minute, with Arsenal in control following defender Shkodran Mustafi’s headed goal moments earlier.
It means the Switzerland midfielder is set for a four-match ban that will keep him out of Saturday’s FA Cup trip to Southampton and subsequent league matches with Watford, Chelsea and Hull.
The dismissal, for a two-footed lunge on Burnley midfielder Steven Defour, changed the game, forced Arsenal to protect their lead and encouraged Burnley to push for an equaliser.
That came in added time when substitute Francis Coquelin caught Ashley Barnes as he burst into the box and Gray clipped his penalty straight down the middle.
While Wenger railed against Taylor, appearing to push him as he was ordered from the touchline, Arsenal threw men forward in pursuit of an improbable late winner.
It came in the eighth minute of added time, after Moss penalised defender Ben Mee for catching Laurent Koscielny in the face with his studs as the Arsenal player tried to head in a cross at the back post.
Sanchez kept his nerve amid the drama and dinked his penalty past goalkeeper Tom Heaton.