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Last Updated: Saturday, 4 October, 2003, 13:28 GMT 14:28 UK
Owen injured in Arsenal win

Liverpool 1-2 Arsenal

Arsenal cemented their Premiership supremacy with a vital victory at Liverpool - but an entertaining encounter was over-shadowed by an injury to England striker Michael Owen.

Owen limped off with a shin problem just seven days before England's crucial Euro 2004 qualifier in Turkey.

It completed a miserable day for Liverpool - who squandered the lead and a host of chances before being caught by two Arsenal sucker punches.

Harry Kewell gave Liverpool an early lead, but Sami Hyypia's own goal gave Arsenal an undeserved equaliser and Robert Pires' brilliant second-half strike kept them top of the table.

But Owen's injury will claim the headlines as he collapsed in agony charging down a clearance from Ashley Cole.

England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson will be relieved that X-rays showed no break, but Owen must already be rated a doubt for Istanbul.

Arsenal were still without injured Patrick Vieira and boss Arsene Wenger decided to rest Martin Keown to accommodate the return of Sol Campbell.

KEY MOMENTS
13 mins: Kewell puts Liverpool ahead
30 mins: Hyypia's own goal puts Arsenal level
67 mins: Pires gives Arsenal the lead
71 mins: Owen limps off with an ankle injury

He delivered a surprise selection in attack, with Jeremie Aliadiere getting the nod ahead of Sylvain Wiltord.

It was a re-shaped Arsenal line-up - and Liverpool took advantage by exerting almost total first-half domination.

Owen and Vladimir Smicer had already tested Jens Lehmann before Kewell deservedly put Liverpool ahead after 13 minutes.

John-Arne Riise's cross was deflected to Kewell, who showed perfect technique to flash a left foot volley past Lehmann.

It was the signal for a sustained spell of flowing attacking football from Liverpool, which contained everything but the vital second goal.

Kewell struck a carbon copy of his goal chance over the top, while Owen sent a lob over the top with Lehmann stranded.

Owen had an even better opportunity after 28 minutes, when he headed Steven Gerrard's free-kick over the top from only eight yards.

And Arsenal made Liverpool pay for their generosity, albeit in fortuitous fashion, two minutes later.

Pires' free-kicked was deflected on to Hyypia by Edu and past a helpless Jerzy Dudek.

Liverpool suffered an injury blow after 41 minutes when Smicer limped off to be replaced by French teenager Anthony Le Tallec.

Gerard Houllier's side picked up the pace again after the interval - but Arsenal had settled to their task and posed a greater threat.

And they were rewarded after 67 minutes when Pires curled a magnificent finish into the top corner to put Arsenal ahead.

The most worrying moment for Liverpool and England came four minutes later when Owen limped sadly away.

He had been struggling with an ankle injury after charging down a clearance, and he was replaced by Emile Heskey.


Liverpool: Dudek, Finnan, Biscan, Hyypia, Riise, Diouf, Gerrard, Diao (Welsh 83), Kewell, Owen (Heskey 72), Smicer (Le Tallec 42).
Subs Not Used: Kirkland, Henchoz.

Booked: Biscan, Welsh.

Arsenal: Lehmann, Lauren, Toure, Campbell, Cole, Parlour, Edu, Silva, Pires, Henry, Aliadiere (Wiltord 73).
Subs Not Used: Stack, Keown, Cygan, Kanu.

Booked: Cole, Parlour.

Attendance: 44,374

Referee: G Barber (Hertfordshire).




WATCH AND LISTEN
Liverpool boss Gerard Houllier
"Arsenal were lucky today"




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