Arsenal news and transfers recap – Bukayo Saka apology, Saliba admission, Toney twist

Arsenal picked up what could prove to be an extremely valuable point against Liverpool in Premier League action on Saturday. As a result, the Gunners now remain at the summit for Christmas and they will be hoping to remain there after 2023 ends.

The performance put in at Anfield was a particularly impressive one but Mikel Arteta will likely be annoyed by one incident involving Kai Havertz which will affect the clash against West Ham in a few days time. A chaotic first half saw both goals scored with a controversial Martin Odegaard handball also taking place.

The Arsenal captain looked to handle the ball inside the area, and although no spot-kick was given, William Saliba delivered a surprising verdict on the incident. Elsewhere, with just over a week until the January transfer window opens, Arsenal are likely finalising their plans which may involve Ivan Toney of Brentford.

Chelsea like the Gunners, have been linked with a move for the striker and now the latter have been sent a clear message regarding what they must do next month.

So, stay with us on for all the latest news from Emirates Stadium with regular updates throughout the day

Arsenal have six immediate Kai Havertz replacements for West Ham clash amid suspension reality
Mikel Arteta has named an unchanged Arsenal team for three successive Premier League fixtures. But this sequence is guaranteed to come to an end against West Ham United on Thursday evening.

As confirmed by the FA in their ‘Essential Information for Players’ 2023/24 season guide, any player who accumulates five bookings before the cut-off point of 19 matches will have to serve an automatic one-match ban.

Heading into Saturday’s clash against Liverpool, Kai Havertz was the only Arsenal player in immediate danger of being handed a suspension as he had been walking the disciplinary tightrope ever since the 11th game of the Premier League game – away at Newcastle United at the beginning of last month.

William Saliba’s surprise verdict on a penalty decision during Arsenal’s Premier League clash with Liverpool has been explained. The French defender appeared to comment on the controversial Martin Odegaard handball decision that saw Liverpool miss out on being awarded a penalty at Anfield, but it has now been clarified that he was referring to an incident between Kai Havertz and Trent Alexander-Arnold in the second half.

Gabriel Magalhaes scored the opener from a free-kick after heading home inside 10 minutes – silencing the crowd at Anfield. However, Mohamed Salah equalised for Liverpool with the Merseyside outfit having the better of the chances in the match.

There was a key decision made by the match officials and VAR which sparked controversy on a huge night in the Premier League title race. The incident arrived when Salah attempted to play a pass forward, but it was blocked by the hand of Odegaard, although he had lost his footing with his arm therefore away from his body in preparation for him falling over.


Arsenal next five Premier League fixtures compared to Man City and Liverpool in tense title race
Arsenal will sit top of the Premier League table on Christmas Day after their dramatic 1-1 draw with title rivals Liverpool. The Gunners entered the huge Anfield clash at the summit and they left Merseyside with a share of the spoils while reigning champions Manchester City saw their clash against Brentford postponed due to Club World Cup participation.

The visitors made an electric start to the game with Gabriel Magalhaes heading home a Martin Odegaard free kick. However, the lead was short-lived as Mohamed Salah fired in an equaliser later in the half with Oleksandr Zinchenko guilty of a defensive error.

With the point keeping Arsenal top, Arteta delivered his verdict on the draw following the final whistle. “It was an unbelievable game of football,” he said in a press conference. “One of the most intense I have witnessed in this league in 20 years. To see our boys have the courage and belief to play like we have done here I think our players deserve big, big credit.”

Dermot Gallagher agrees with Jurgen Klopp over Liverpool penalty claim vs Arsenal
Former Premier League referee Dermot Gallagher believes Liverpool should have been awarded a penalty against Arsenal. Jurgen Klopp was left puzzled by the decision not to award his team a penalty for a handball by Martin Odegaard during their 1-1 draw with Arsenal at Anfield.

Despite Mohamed Salah’s equaliser, Arsenal secured top spot in the Premier League on Christmas Day with the draw, leaving Liverpool one point behind in second place. However, Klopp thinks his team should have had a penalty in the 19th minute after Odegaard seemed to block Salah’s path to the ball by handling it in the 18-yard box.

Referee Chris Kavanagh let play continue, and there was no VAR check. In his post-match press conference, Klopp joked that Gallagher, a regular on Sky Sports’ Ref Watch show, would side with the referee’s decision. But when asked, Gallagher said he believed Liverpool should have been awarded a penalty.

Cristiano Ronaldo Arsenal transfer prediction made amid surprise Premier League return chance
Boxing promoter Frank Warren has said that he is “working” on a surprise deal that would see Cristiano Ronaldo make another surprise comeback to the Premier League.

The striker left Manchester United last year after 18 months at Old Trafford, joining Saudi Arabian club Al-Nassr. This season, Ronaldo has scored 17 goals and grabbed nine assists in only 16 league games, leading scoring charts in the Saudi Pro League.

Ronaldo is one of the names regularly tipped to make a move back to England due to the different times of the season. Newcastle have been one clubs name-checked as a possible destination, with the Magpies owned by the Public Investment Fund (PIF) – the same owners as Al-Nassr.

The 38-year-old scored 145 goals across two spells at Man United before falling out with Erik ten Hag last season. The five-time Ballon d’Or winner has proved he still has the quality needed and a move has been touted ahead of the opening of the January transfer window.

Arsenal have completed first step for £44m cash injection as Premier League title omens explored
For the second season in a row, Arsenal will be top of the Premier League table at Christmas.

With Aston Villa being held at home by Sheffield United on Friday, it means the Gunners just had to avoid defeat against Liverpool less than 24 hours later to ensure they could not be leapfrogged until Tuesday at the very earliest and the required result was achieved as the two teams played out a 1-1 draw at Anfield.

As normal service has resumed this season, Arsenal have had to wait a little while longer to confirm their place at the top of the tree, but their stay may only be shortlived as Villa and the Reds both play before they welcome West Ham United to the Emirates Stadium on Thursday evening.

Nevertheless, the incentive to lead the way at Christmas was always simple. In 10 of the last 14 seasons, the team that is number one in the table in English football’s top-flight on December 25 has gone on to be crowned Premier League champions. By earning a point on Merseyside, the north London outfit have completed the first step.

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