Arsenal had Olivier Giroud to thank for after the France star scores his 17th Premier League goal as a substitute to snatched a point at Southampton.
Charlie Austin let go an early opener for Mauricio Pellegrino’s hosts – his fifth in three Premier League begins this season – and the striker was unfortunate not to have more to appear for the obvious feeling of frenzy he and the Southampton attack infused into a shambling Arsenal backline.
Arsene Wenger’s men recouped their balance and some swashbuckling attacking play as they looked for an equalizer before half time made for a spellbinding challenge.
Be that as it may, France striker Alexandre Lacazette couldn’t guarantee a goal on his endeavours and it was left to his compatriot Giroud – a man, similar to Austin, not very knowledgeable in the starting line-up this term – to turn away a 6th Premier League loss of the season.
There was a sure certainty as the 31-year-old rose to expertly direct ball to Alexis Sanchez’s who coasted cross past Fraser Forster for a seventh goal in all competition this term.
Giroud now has 17 Premier League substitute goals to his name, an the same number as similarly famed game-changers Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Nwankwo Kanu. Just Jermain Defoe has more.
The result means Arsenal has missed out on the opportunity to replace Liverpool in the top four before Sunday’s Merseyside derby, while Southampton would have been glad of a greater cushion between themselves and the bottom three than the five points they now enjoy.