Arsenal Vs. Newcastle United, 2012 Premier League: Thomas Vermaelen Snatches Winner

Arsenal appeared to be going back to being the Arsenal of earlier in the year for 75 minutes. They were better than Newcastle United. They had all of the possession and all of the chances, but they couldn't finish them. Newcastle looked like they were going to hold on for a draw. Then, Thomas Vermaelen struck in stoppage time.

The Gunners are three points clear of Chelsea in fourth place and just one point behind Tottenham Hotspur after their 2-1 win over Newcastle. Vermaelen scored the winner in the 94th minute, getting forward from open play and putting in a cross from Theo Walcott at the far post.

Hatem Ben Arfa opened the scoring in the 14th minute, aided by some bad defending and goalkeeping. Kieran Gibbs gave him a shooting lane as he cut in from the right, and Wojciech Szczesny let himself get badly beaten by his shot at the near post. Newcastle was forced to cut their celebration short just 53 seconds later when Robin van Persie scored the equalizer, turning Mike Williamson before slipping a low shot past Tim Krul.

Up until stoppage time, Krul seemed like the clear man of the match. Between his fantastic saves and van Persie's shocking misses after his goal, Newcastle came very close to holding onto a result even though they were thoroughly dominated after Ben Arfa's goal. This loss almost certainly puts them out of the race for the top four, while Arsenal can set their sights on third.

For more on the two teams, head over to Arsenal blog The Short Fuse and Newcastle United blog Coming Home Newcastle.

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