London: Manchester City capitalised on Laurent Koscielny’s early sending-off to canter to a first league victory at Arsenal in 38 years, with Sunday's 2-0 win keeping the defending champions seven points behind Manchester United in the Premier League title race.
The France centre-back was shown a straight red card for rugby-tackling Edin Dzeko to the ground inside the area, leaving Arsenal a man down with just nine minutes gone.
Dzeko’s resulting penalty was saved — via the post — by Wojciech Szczesny, but the Bosnia striker made amends by adding to James Milner’s opener to give City a 2-0 lead after 32 minutes. The visitors also ended the game with 10 men after captain Vincent Kompany was red-carded for a wild two-footed challenge on Jack Wilshere, even though he got the ball.
City’s record at Arsenal was so bad that the champions had to go back to 1975 for their last league win at the home of the London club. They hadn't even scored a goal in their last five league visits to Emirates Stadium. However, there was only going to be one winner once Koscielny was dismissed for wrestling Dzeko to the ground as they competed for a ball that had been flicked back into the penalty box.
Koscielny’s vehement protests at referee Mike Dean were in vain and although Szczesny saved Dzeko's penalty with his feet, with the ball rebounding off the post and back into the goalkeeper’s arms, the respite was brief. (Agencies)