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Last Updated: Friday, 26 September, 2003, 20:55 GMT 21:55 UK
Arsenal down battling Newcastle
Arsenal 3-2 Newcastle

Arsenal striker Thierry Henry

Arsenal's players kept their tempers under control as a Thierry Henry penalty saw them to victory over Newcastle at Highbury.

Arsenal did not even pick up a booking in the game with their behaviour under the microscope in the aftermath of their fracas with Manchester United last Sunday.

Henry gave the Gunners the lead after a mistake by Newcastle defender Titus Bramble but Arsenal suffered a major blow when captain Patrick Vieira went off with a thigh strain.

Almost immediately, Laurent Robert equalised for the Magpies before Gilberto Silva put the home side back in front.

Olivier Bernard again levelled for the battling visitors but Henry grabbed the winner from the spot after a needless Jermaine Jenas handball.

18 mins: Henry puts Arsenal ahead
25: Arsenal's Vieira goes off because of injury
26: Robert equalises for Newcastle
67: Gilberto restores Arsenal's lead
71: Bernard lashes in a Newcastle leveller
79:Henry's penalty gives Arsenal the three points

All six players who had been charged by the Football Association for their part in the clash with Manchester United started for Arsenal.

One of them, Ashley Cole, burst into the Newcastle area after just two minutes, and only a palm-away from Newcastle keeper Shay Given stopped his cross presenting Sylvain Wiltord with a simple tap in.

Arsenal dominated the early possession with Wiltord and Henry each going close before the pressure told on the Newcastle defence.

The visitors' central defender Titus Bramble sliced Lauren's cross into the path of Henry at the far post and he gratefully accepted by side-footing his fifth goal of the season.

Arsenal's inspirational captain Vieira was forced off because of a thigh strain after 25 minutes and Newcastle took full advantage to net an equaliser.

Lee Bowyer put a ball into the run of Kieron Dyer and his cross from the byline was tapped in from close range by Robert.

Thierry Henry scores from the spot in Arsenal's 3-2 win over Newcastle
Henry nonchalantly chips in his penalty winner

Newcastle were more imposing with the confidence of a goal behind them but Wiltord could have given Arsenal the lead shortly before the teams headed in for the interval.

He was found by the byline cross of Gilberto but mistimed a first-time shot from 10 yards.

After the break, Freddie Ljungberg seized on a slip by Andy O'Brien in the Magpies defence only to see his chip over keeper Given come back off the post to safety.

But it was not long before the Gunners did take the lead with Gilberto heading high into the net from a Robert Pires free-kick.

Newcastle again responded in emphatic fashion with Dyer's through ball being powered into the top corner by Bernard.

Arsenal continued to press forward and were gifted a winner following a Jenas handball from a corner.

And Henry, who missed from 12 yards against Inter Milan, stepped up to show his and Arsenal's character by chipping in his penalty-kick for the winner.

Arsenal: Lehmann, Lauren, Toure, Keown, Cole, Parlour, Silva, Vieira, Ljungberg, Henry, Wiltord. Subs: Pires, Edu, Cygan, Aliadiere, Stack.

Newcastle: Given, O'Brien, Bramble, Hughes, Bernard, Jenas, Bowyer, Dyer, Bellamy, Shearer, Robert. Subs: Griffin, Speed, Ambrose, Ameobi, Caig.

Referee: M Riley (W Yorkshire)

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