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Arsenal go top as Ramsdale overcomes blip vs Brentford

Aaron Ramsdale and Arsenal overcame a pre-halftime blip to beat Brentford 2-1 at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday and run their win streak to eight while summitting the Premier League table or at least a day.

Ramsdale made a huge error that allowed Yoane Wissa to tie the game at one, but also was strong in the second half including a terrific stop on Ivan Toney. Arsenal move to 20-4-4 as their 64 points are one more than Liverpool and two ahead of Man City before the Reds face the Citizens at Anfield on Sunday.

WATCH ARSENAL vs BRENTFORD FULL MATCH REPLAY

Declan Rice scored early for the Gunners and Kai Havertz late, both headers off Ben White crosses as the Gunners have now rung up a 34-4 goal differential during a winning run that only Porto has been able to slow — let alone stop. Arsenal host Porto in a UEFA Champions League Round of 16 second leg on Tuesday.

Brentford are winless in five matches and have the Premier League's fourth worst defensive record with 52 goals conceded this season. The Bees sit 15th with 26 points, five clear of 18th-place Luton Town.

Ramsdale was only starting as Arsenal No. 1 David Raya is on loan from Brentford, and his teammates showed big support of the backup both after his mistake and the Gunners eventual match-winner.

What’s next?

Arsenal host Porto at 4pm ET Tuesday in the Champions League, needing to overcome a 1-0 deficit from the first leg in Porto. Their next Premier League game is currently set for March 31 at Manchester City.

Brentford go to Burnley at 11am ET Saturday, then host Manchester United on March 30.


How to watch Arsenal vs Brentford live, stream link and start time

Kick off: 12:30pm ET Saturday
TV Channel: NBC
Online: Online via NBC.com and Peacock Premium


Arsenal vs Brentford live updates — By Nick Mendola

Arsenal vs Brentford final score: 2-1

Goals: Rice (19'), Wissa (45+4'), Havertz (86')

Arsenal vs Brentford player ratings (from fotmob.com)

White gets high marks for his assists, but the whole unit moved well for Arsenal, who only conceded via Ramsdale's error. The midfield was especially good and Bukayo Saka leaving this game without a goal or an assist is a bit of a surprise. Toney will have won more admirers from both sides as Arsenal consider their forward ranks for this summer. He got stuck into 15 duels, winning nine, and nearly scored an unbelievable goal before Ramsdale's leaping paw got a piece of it.

Arsenal vs Brentford player ratings (from fotmob.com)
Arsenal vs Brentford player ratings (from fotmob.com)

Havertz redemption

Havertz will feel he should've scored earlier in the game and while the miss wasn't nearly as grievous an error as Ramsdale, there's a measure of redemption here.

Another cross and header for the Gunners, as Kai Havertz thumps home another Ben White cross. Gabriel Magalhaes races back to Ramsdale to celebrate with the keeper.

Ramsdale renewal going nicely, Gunners just off

He's been very good since the big mistake.

Arsenal have had two penalty shouts denied, one a clear-cut Kai Havertz dive and the other deemed either acting by Leandro Trossard or irrelevant positioning.

Meanwhile, Declan Rice has cranked a wondershot off the post from distance. It's all there for both sides.

Aaron Ramsdale, nice!

Ivan Toney tries his luck with a tremendous strike from distance, thumping the ball with the outside of his boot and sending it spinning toward Ramsdale's upper 90 near post.

Ramsdale would've naturally thought the strike was going to the other corner but read it very well and flies to his right to push it away from wondergoal status. Nice recovery.

Aaron Ramsdale, WYD? — Arsenal 1-1 Brentford (45+4' minute)

There's being rusty, and then there's being unaware.

Aaron Ramsdale is starting thanks to David Raya being on loan from Brentford, and the keeper has made a massive error.

Ramsdale seemingly has no urgency as Yoane Wissa charges toward him in possession. A leaping Wissa blocks the cross and it goes into the goal.

Oof.

Havertz just misses 2-0

Jorginho gets the ball in his own half and only needs a half-look before sending a super pass to put Kai Havertz on goal.

Havertz does everything right but finish, dinking the keeper but missing the far post.

All Arsenal as Declan Rice puts Gunners on top — Arsenal 1-0 Brentford (19th minute)

It's an all-England hook-up as Ben White's cross is headed home by Declan Rice, who has shattered his career scoring marks.

His sixth Premier League goal of the season joins six assists to give him 12 goal contributions, six more than his best season at West Ham.

Emirates Stadium buzzing as title hopes tempt Gooners

The advanced stats say that Arsenal has been the best or second-best team in the Premier League this season, with Man City only a point in front of them and set to play leaders Liverpool. So a win here puts them in a terrific spot with Man City still on their schedule. Brentford can play but are missing Bryan Mbeumo, Rico Henry, Ben Mee, and others. Ivan Toney and the Bees can attack, but if both teams are anywhere near their best it's still a day for the Gunners. This is the Premier League, though, let's see what happens here.


Arsenal lineup

Ramsdale, White, Saliba, Gabriel, Kiwior, Rice, Jorginho, Odegaard, Saka, Trossard, Havertz.

Brentford lineup

Flekken, Roerslev, Zanka, Ajer, Collins, Lewis-Potter, Norgaard, Onyeka, Janelt, Wissa, Toney.


Arsenal focus, team news

OUT: David Raya (loan - parent club), Jurrien Timber (torn ACL - out for season) | QUESTIONABLE: Gabriel Martinelli (foot), Bukayo Saka (illness), Oleksandr Zinchenko (calf), Takehiro Tomiyasu (undisclosed)

Brentford focus, team news

OUT: Ben Mee (ankle - out for season), Ethan Pinnock (ankle), Rico Henry (torn ACL - out for season), Kevin Schade (adductor), Aaron Hickey (hamstring), Josh Dasilva (torn ACL - out for season) | QUESTIONABLE: Bryan Mbeumo (ankle)