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Arsenal star gives Mikel Arteta food for thought as Wolves win piles pressure on Man City


Leandro Trossard and Martin Odegaard placed Arsenal’s Premier League title challenge back on track as the Gunners defeated Wolves 2-0 to go clear of Manchester City. The duo produced big moments in an otherwise cagey game, sending a reminder to City and Liverpool that Mikel Arteta’s side remain serious about ending the season on top. Express Sport picks out five things learned.

Leandro Trossard goal gives Mikel Arteta food for thought

Trossard’s delicate finish opened the scoring in a tight first half. The winger stabbed his effort into the top corner via the post to hand Arsenal the lead.

Trossard’s battle with Gabriel Martinelli for the left-wing position has split supporters and pundits in recent weeks. The 29-year-old was handed a start against Wolves after missing out on such a role in both legs of Arsenal’s Champions League quarter-final with Bayern Munich.

Arteta has preferred Martinelli for many of Arsenal’s bigger games this season, reducing Trossard to a substitute role.

But while Martinelli has struggled for consistency in recent times, Trossard has produced game-deciding moments. Arteta might decide to stick with the Belgian for the remainder of the season.

Martin Odegaard seals important success

Given Arsenal’s tough week, including defeats against Aston Villa and Bayern Munich, it will mean so much to Arteta and his players that they end it back on top of the Premier League by a point – albeit with City boasting a game in hand. Odegaard’s finish from a tight angle wrapped up the match.

Arsenal had weathered a storm in the second half and at times looked like they might slip up, but ultimately saw through a vital three points. This was a game in which the more brittle Arsenal of times gone by would have dropped points.

David Raya save keeps Wolves at bay

Villa’s two goals last weekend are the only strikes conceded by David Raya in his last five Premier League appearances. Raya’s performances have been key to Arsenal’s title push and have debunked the argument that Arteta was wrong to source an upgrade on Aaron Ramsdale.

The Spanish stop-stopper continued his excellent form against Wolves, tipping a vicious Joao Gomes effort on the bar from close range. His ability to pass out from the back has revolutionised the way Arsenal build their attacks.

Although still technically a loanee from Brentford, Raya’s long-term future beyond this season appears to be at the Emirates Stadium.

Bukayo Saka form may worry Arteta – and Gareth Southgate

Criticism of Bukayo Saka may seem harsh given his output contributes a significant amount to Arsenal’s success. But the England international is going through his toughest spell of the campaign just as he will want to be impressing Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate.

Saka, who has struggled with a minor muscle injury across March and April, has scored just three times in his last 10 appearances across all competitions and faced criticism for his performance in the defeat against Bayern. Arsenal need the 22-year-old to quickly rekindle his best form and fitness quickly if they are to win the Premier League.

England, meanwhile, will need Saka at peak performance for Euro 2024.

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