IMAGE: Tottenham Hotspur’s Gareth Bale celebrates after scoring their sides fourth goal with Serge Aurier. Photograph: Matthew Childs/Getty Images
Arsenal revived their hopes of playing in European competition next season after goals from David Luiz, Alexandre Lacazette and Nicolas Pepe helped them to a 3-1 win at Leicester City in an entertaining Premier League clash on Sunday.
The result lifted Arsenal two places up to ninth on 37 points from 26 games while Leicester stayed third on 49 points after suffering a second setback in three days following their Europa League elimination.
Leicester, who exited Europe’s second-tier competition with a 2-0 home defeat by Slavia Prague on Thursday, took a sixth-minute lead against Arsenal as Youri Tielemans cut inside the area from the right flank and fired a low shot into the far corner.
The Gunners equalised in the 39th when Luiz headed a Willian cross into the bottom right corner and Lacazette turned the tide in first-half stoppage time as he drilled in a penalty after a VAR check showed Wilfred Ndidi had handled the ball in the area.
Poor defending cost Leicester again in the 52nd minute as they allowed the visitors to break through the middle before Willian slipped the ball to Pepe and the Ivorian forward tucked it into an empty net from two metres.
Arsenal held on comfortably in the closing stages and missed chances to win by a bigger margin as Kieran Tierney volleyed just wide from 20 metres and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang came close with a fizzing low shot.
Bale double helps Tottenham crush Burnley
IMAGE: From left, Arsenal’s Alexandre Lacazette celebrates with teammates Willian, Granit Xhaka and Martin Oedegaard after scoring their team’s second goal. Photograph: Rui Vieira/Getty Images
Gareth Bale produced his most impressive performance since returning on loan to Tottenham Hotspur with two goals in his side’s 4-0 win over Burnley in the Premier League on Sunday.
The Welshman continued his recent resurgence by marking only his third league start of the season with the opening goal after only two minutes, prodding in from close range.
He then set up Harry Kane for Tottenham’s second after 15 minutes before Lucas Moura made it 3-0 before halftime.
Bale then claimed his second of the game with a clinical finish after 55 minutes as Tottenham returned to form in the league having lost five of their previous six games.
The impressive win left Tottenham in eighth spot with 39 points from 25 games and revived their hopes of finishing in the top four. Burnley are 15th with 28 points.
Fulham held in 0-0 draw at Crystal Palace
Fulham extended its unbeaten run in the Premier League to five matches with a 0-0 draw at Crystal Palace.
Fulham stayed 18th in the Premier League relegation zone but moved to within three points of safety after Palace goalkeeper Vicente Guaita reacted quickly to keep out a header from Fulham’s Josh Maja.
Center-back Joachim Andersen threatened the goal at both ends, forcing a save from his own goalkeeper with a misplaced clearance attempt, and heading wide at a corner soon after.
He also had a shot blocked by Palace defender Gary Cahill later on in a game where set pieces often proved the most effective way to create chances.
Fulham’s Ademola Lookman and Maja sent shots wide late in the game as Fulham pushed for what could have been its first back-to-back wins since returning to the Premier League this season. Fulham has conceded one goal in its last five league games.
Palace remained 13th after manager Roy Hodgson’s 150th game in charge but didn’t record a single shot on target.