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Last Updated: Saturday, 2 December 2006, 14:40 GMT
Arsenal 3-0 Tottenham
By Andrew McKenzie

Gilberto Silva (right) scored twice from the spot
Gilberto Silva (right) scored twice from the spot
Referee Graham Poll was at the centre of attention as two disputed penalties helped Arsenal beat Spurs in the first north London derby at their new ground.

Arsenal led through a composed finish by Emmanuel Adebayor after he was played onside by Pascal Chimbonda.

Chimbonda was then harshly adjudged to have fouled Tomas Rosicky and Gilberto Silva drilled home the penalty.

Gilberto got another from the spot when Jermaine Jenas felled Robin van Persie, after the Dutchman had handled.

The win extended Arsenal's unbeaten streak over their neighbours to 14 league games.

It also maintained their run of always winning 3-0 in Premiership action at the Emirates Stadium after scoring the first goal.

Poll attracted criticism for his performance in the recent London derby between Spurs and Chelsea.

And while he looked to have blundered for Arsenal's two penalties, Tottenham did not deserve anything from a lacklustre performance.

Their one and only moment of note came in the 11th minute.

606: DEBATE
GC

Steed Malbranque started a fine move down the left and almost finished it when Dimitar Berbatov worked an opening in the box but the French winger lashed his shot just wide of the post.

But from that moment the game was all about Arsenal.

The Gunners were close to their fluent best, with Adebayor's powerful running with the ball providing a worthy replacement for injured skipper Thierry Henry.

He was given the benefit of a split decision by the linesman when Toure lifted the ball over the top and the talented 22-year-old Togo forward showed composure beyond his years to slot past Paul Robinson.

Henry, who had earlier played down reports of a bust up with manager Arsene Wenger, was first off the bench to celebrate with his protege.

The goal saw Arsenal grow in confidence, while Spurs seemed to slip even further into their shell.

Spurs boss Martin Jol
Martin Jol was far from impressed
Johan Djourou should have finished off a whipped in Van Persie free-kick and Adebayor drilled at Robinson with team-mates better placed.

Freddie Ljungberg was enjoying plenty of space down the right, with Spurs' exposed left-back Benoit Assou-Ekotto finding the Swede and the overlapping Emmanuel Eboue too much of a handful.

On the other flank right-back Chimbonda was having an equally wretched time.

With Rosicky free on goal he lunged into a desperate last-ditch tackle and looked to have taken the ball cleanly.

But Poll pointed to the spot and stand-in skipper Gilberto Silva gave Robinson no chance with a well-struck penalty into the bottom corner.

If Spurs boss Martin Jol was furious with the officials about the first goal, frustration was the name of the game after a second decision went against his side.

Re-enforcements were drafted in at half-time in the shape of Jenas and Young-Pyo Lee.

Jenas finally brought a save out of Jens Lehmann just after the hour mark with a long-range shot and Aaron Lennon was crowded out when the rebound fell at his feet.

But Jenas' contribution at the other end proved more decisive when he brought down Van Persie in the box and Poll again pointed to the spot.

However, the official had missed a clear handball by Van Persie as he tussled with Jenas and Ledley King outside the area.


  • Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger:
    "We played with spirit, character, determination and good organisation against a good Tottenham team.

    "The team are inspired by their ambition and they were disappointed by our last two results. We realised that, as a team, we have to give more.

    "The two penalties looked to be penalties to me but it happens that you don't get them in some games."

  • Tottenham boss Martin Jol:
    "You can talk about the decisions and they probably did cost us goals, but I would be embarrassed to talk about them too much. We did not lose because of them.

    "We saw that Thierry Henry was not playing and we knew Arsenal had lost recent games.

    "We sensed this was an opportunity, so we are disappointed."


    Arsenal: Lehmann, Eboue, Toure, Djourou, Clichy, Ljungberg, Fabregas, Silva, Rosicky (Hleb 55), Adebayor (Walcott 87), Van Persie (Julio Baptista 80).
    Subs Not Used: Almunia, Hoyte.

    Booked: Silva.

    Goals: Adebayor 20, Silva 42 pen, 72 pen.

    Tottenham: Robinson, Chimbonda, Dawson, King, Assou-Ekotto (Lee 46), Lennon, Zokora, Tainio (Defoe 80), Malbranque (Jenas 46), Keane, Berbatov.
    Subs Not Used: Cerny, Huddlestone.

    Booked: Assou-Ekotto, Jenas.

    Att: 60,115.

    Ref: G Poll (Hertfordshire).



    SEE ALSO
    Henry set for spell on sidelines
    02 Dec 06 |  Arsenal
    Saturday's football photos
    02 Dec 06 |  Football


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