Aston Villa fans and players were furious with Theo Walcott and referee Kevin Friend following what they believed to be a contentious decision, but Arsenal players, fans, and viewers around the world could see it was a clear penalty when Alan Hutton brought down the speedster in the box.
Olivier Giroud scored his second spot kick of the week with just seven minutes on the clock, giving us a much needed lead at Villa Park.
Walcott showed great strength to battle his way into the box, holding Hutton off the entire time. The Arsenal man looked like he had the better of the full-back and was breaking away, but as he put the ball across goal he was tugged to the ground.
There was initially fury from the Arsenal players and fans as Friend ignored our pleas for a penalty, but after a long pause he pointed to the spot. It’s unclear whether it was one of the other officials who made the decision for him, but it was certainly the correct one.
Giroud stepped up to the spot looking calm and collected, scoring his fourth goal in four days. It wasn’t necessarily the best penalty, but he sent Brad Guzan the wrong way and slotted in to the relatively open net.
Check out the goal below:
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We have an excellent record at Villa Park, and look set to continue in that vein this Sunday afternoon.
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We’re in excellent form at the moment, and look in confident mood following our midweek victory. This is our chance to go top of the table, and against relegation candidates Aston Villa we have to grab it with both hands.