Tottenham Hotspur 2-2 Arsenal: Sánchez saves Coquelin’s blushes in frantic North London Derby

Tottenham Hotspur 2-2 Arsenal: Sánchez saves Coquelin's blushes in frantic North London Derby

A late equaliser from Alexis Sánchez helped to save Francis Coquelin’s blushes following the Frenchman’s second-half dismissal: at a point where the Gunners were in the ascendancy and looked certain to secure all three points.

Alexis to the rescue for travelling Gunners

A late equaliser courtesy of Alexis Sánchez – with his first league goal since October – was enough to salvage a point for Arsenal in an unpredictable, yet frustrating North London Derby at White Hart Lane.

Having broken the deadlock on the stroke of half-time courtesy of a deft backheel finish from Aaron Ramsey, the Gunners enjoyed some counter-attacking freedom of their own – the momentum shifted as Spurs were eagerly anticipating the referee’s whistle to signal the half-time interval.

Ramsey (pictured, middle) broke the deadlock with an excellent improvised backheel flick from Bellerín’s pass | Photo: Getty

It came, and gave Mauricio Pochettino‘s men a much-needed chance to regroup. 1-0 down, they didn’t have a goal to show for their early dominance in the opening minutes – but a needless foul by Francis Coquelin on Harry Kane helped their cause near the hour mark.

Having already been booked for a foolish, deliberate handball in the first-half, the Frenchman was given his marching orders by referee Michael Oliver and rightly so.

Marching orders: Coquelin is dismissed after a second bookable offence, much to the pleasure of the hosts | Photo: Getty

Two quick-fire goals from Toby Alderweireld and in particular, a sublime finish by Kane on the edge of the area propelled Spurs forward in a matter of minutes following Coquelin’s dismissal.

A spirited fightback, but could’ve been so much easier..

2-1 down, having been in a relatively comfortable position, Arsenal needed a response. They couldn’t make it four consecutive defeats, surely?

Alexis Sánchez was on hand, with fourteen minutes left to play, to level the scores once more. After a precise pass toward his path by Hector Bellerín, he got the better of Spurs’ centre-backs and slammed low past Hugo Lloris – who fumbled the ball into the bottom corner.

Man of the moment: Alexis celebrates his well-taken equaliser alongside fellow goalscorer Ramsey, making it 2-2 | Photo: Getty

2-2, and an entertaining watch for the neutral. For supporters of both sides though, especially Arsenal, it’s two points dropped as opposed to one gained in the race for the Premier League title.

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