Home / Teams / Fulham v Arsenal Live Commentary & Result, 12/09/2020, Premier League

Fulham v Arsenal Live Commentary & Result, 12/09/2020, Premier League

16′ Fulham are defending cross after cross now! Bellerin fizzes in a ball that passes through the box, but Maitland-Niles retrieves the ball. His ball towards Xhaka is poor, yet then Tierney sends in another dangerous delivery. Fulham cling on.

15′ Holding makes a really good challenge to keep Arsenal on the attack as Fulham attempt to play out. Willian’s low ball in the area is blocked, but Arsenal can build again.

14′ Only Liverpool (five) have scored the opening goal of a Premier League season on more occasions than Arsenal (four).

13′ Arsenal are starting to settle nicely, having been slightly fortunate to break the deadlock. A neat move ends with an Aubameyang cross, but Hector clears effectively this time.

11′ Lacazette has become the first player to score the very first goal of two Premier League seasons (also 2017-18).

10′ Good response from Fulham! Cavaleiro spins out to the left and crosses deep to the far post, where Kebano thumps a volley goalwards. Maitland-Niles blocks well.

9′ GOOAAALLLL!!! LACAZETTE! Against the run of play! Arsenal have a scrappy opener! Aubameyang squares from the left and Ream makes a real mess of a clearance as he blocks Xhaka’s low shot. Willian is gifted a huge chance for a debut goal but Rodak saves, only for the ball to run for Lacazette to slam in from two yards out.

7′ SAVE! Really nice play from Fulham! A sweeping move up the right flank sees the referee play advantage for a foul on Kebano as Odoi instead advances. The right-back cuts inside and shoots left-footed, with Leno only gathering at the second attempt. Good start!

6′ Arsenal have preferred to sit back in recent games against top sides, inviting pressure. They have so far also done the same against a newly promoted team here, though.

4′ Fulham are on the front foot in these opening stages. Gabriel looks a little uncertain as he tussles with Kamara.

3′ Kebano is quickly involved again! He challenges with a defender for a left-wing cross but concedes a foul. His header goes backwards.

2′ CHANCE! Kebano almost gets in! Sloppy play from Arsenal at the back. Gabriel inexplicably leaves a Maitland-Niles pass for Leno, not spotting the lurking Fulham man. Kebano gets there, but Leno lunges out and intervenes crucially.

2′ Even with Mitrovic on the bench, Fulham are playing very direct early on, putting the Arsenal defence under pressure with long balls out from the back.

1′ KICK-OFF: Fulham forward Kamara gets us up and running!

Gabriel and Willian are the 10th and 11th Brazilians to appear in the Premier League for Arsenal. Only Chelsea and Manchester City (both 12) have had more Brazilian players in the competition. Meanwhile, Elneny is making his first Premier League appearance since May 2019 against Burnley.

For Arsenal, there are four changes from the Community Shield win over Liverpool. Transfer speculation means Emi Martinez is not involved at all, with Leno back, but Holding, Bellerin and Maitland-Niles all keep their places. Gabriel debuts in the absence of the injured David Luiz. Willian also makes his bow.

Fulham line up with a very similar team to that which was promoted, although top-scorer Mitrovic only makes the bench. Areola signed on loan from Paris-Saint Germain this week but joins Mitrovic among a surprisingly strong selection of substitutes.

Subs: Matt Macey, Bukayo Saka, Dani Ceballos, Nicolas Pepe, Joe Willock, Eddie Nketiah, Sead Kolasinac.

Arsenal (3-4-3): Bernd Leno; Rob Holding, Gabriel, Kieran Tierney; Hector Bellerin, Mohamed Elneny, Granit Xhaka, Ainsley Maitland-Niles; Willian, Alexandre Lacazette, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Subs: Alphonse Areola, Aleksandar Mitrovic, Anthony Knockaert, Bobby Reid, Maxime Le Marchand, Cyrus Christie, Andre Zambo Anguissa.

Fulham (4-2-3-1): Marek Rodak; Denis Odoi, Michael Hector, Tim Ream, Joe Bryan; Harrison Reed, Tom Cairney, Neeskens Kebano, Josh Onomah, Ivan Cavaleiro; Aboubakar Kamara.

There are new signings for both sides to welcome, with Willian the standout addition alongside increased defensive options for Arsenal. Fulham have not spent nearly as heavily as following their previous promotion, but World Cup winner Alphonse Areola is among their arrivals. Let’s see who starts…

The first match of the new season takes place here, with last term’s Championship play-off winners hosting the FA Cup holders at Craven Cottage. Fulham are hoping for a much better campaign than in 2018-19 when they were relegated, while Arsenal hope to move on from a tough year last time out as they finished eighth.

Hello and welcome to our live text commentary of the Premier League opener between Fulham and Arsenal!

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