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Substitute Bendtner scores with first touch to lead Arsenal to 2-1 win over Tottenham

Substitute Bendtner scores with first touch to lead Arsenal to 2-1 win over Tottenham

Substitute Nicklas Bendtner scored with his first touch to lead Arsenal over Tottenham 2-1 on Saturday in the Premier League.
The win extends Arsenal's eight-year, 20-game unbeaten streak against its north London rival in all competitions.
It also opens up a four-point lead for Arsenal over second-place Manchester United, which hosts Everton on Sunday.
"A good sign of today is we knew we could win the game without being at our best," Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said. "That is something that tells you about the maturity of the team and as well about their mental strength.
"But of course we know the players want it, but we were not so sharp today."
Bendtner headed in the winning goal in the 76th minute shortly after the 19-year-old Denmark striker replaced Emmanuel Eboue.
"To let in a goal from a corner when we had all 10 outfield players in the penalty area is not normal," Spurs manager Juande Ramos said. "This type of mistake shouldn't be made by a professional team."
Emmanuel Adebayor gave Arsenal the lead at Emirates Stadium three minutes into the second half, before Dimitar Berbatov leveled in the 66th.
"It was a very tough game and at one stage it looked like a draw, so to come out with the three points is exceptional," Wenger said.
Robbie Keane could have put Tottenham ahead in the 72nd, but his penalty kick was saved by Arsenal goalkeeper Manuel Almunia.
"Obviously he's upset about it, because he had an opportunity in a derby where there is a lot of close rivalry," Spurs manager Juande Ramos said. "Robbie's usually quite certain at penalties, but today he committed a mistake when we needed a goal."
Tottenham has 18 points _ 25 points behind Arsenal _ and is in the bottom half of the table.
Beating Arsenal for the first time since 1999 could have sparked Spurs going into the second half of the season, but Ramos had to contend with an injury crisis for his first derby match.
The Gunners applied instant pressure on Tottenham's patched-up defense, with Mathieu Flamini volleying wide and Kolo Toure shooting into Paul Robinson's hands inside the opening five minutes.
Robinson pushed Eboue's shot wide in the 34th and produced a reflex save in the 43rd from Toure's header as Spurs maintained a solid barrier, with midfielders Teemu Tainio and Pascal Chimbonda looking comfortable at the back.
At the other end, Tottenham struggled to test Almunia.
Keane returned from suspension to lead the attack alongside Berbatov, with Jermain Defoe getting no reward for scoring in Tuesday's League Cup quarterfinal win over Manchester City.
In Tottenham's best chance of the first half, Kevin-Prince Boateng unleashed a curling shot in the 39th which dipped over.
Just three minutes into the second half, Adebayor snatched his season-leading 10th league goal. Tomas Rosicky passed through to Fabregas, who slickly backheeled the ball into the path of Adebayor.
"At 1-0 we looked to be in control of the game," Wenger said. "But we relieved the pressure on them and allowed them back into the game."
Keane rattled the crossbar in the 65th with an angled drive from Aaron Lennon's cross.
A minute later, Spurs leveled with a near-replica of Arsenal's opener. Keane outmuscled Gallas and backheeled to Berbatov, who shot the ball from a tight angle past Almunia.
And when Berbatov won a penalty in the 72nd, Spurs fans hoped for a first win at Arsenal since 1993 _ until Keane's low drive was blocked by Almunia.
Wenger praised the Spanish keeper's growing stature at the club since arriving in 2004.
Almunia has kept out Jens Lehmann, the German goalkeeper who has publicly criticized his lack of games for Arsenal.
"I'm not in the situation where I have any bad feeling towards Jens at all," Wenger said. "I can understand _ he is a 200 percent professional."
Arsenal also beat Tottenham 3-1 in September and the sides will meet twice in the League Cup semifinals in January and February.


Updated : 2021-04-12 12:53 GMT+08:00