NEWSROOM
TEAM LINE UP :
Seaman
Dixon
Winterburn
Adams
Keown
Parlour
Vieira
Ljungberg
Diawara
Kanu
Anelka
SUBSTITUTES:
Lukic
Vivas
Diawara
Boa Morte
Bould
SCORERS:
FULL TIME REPORT

SOUTHAMPTON vs ARSENAL
0 - 0
Attendance : 15,255

By Marc Isaacs

ARSENE WENGER was disappointed that his side could not close the gap on leaders Manchester United after only managing to pick up a point at the Dell.

The Gunners remain four points behind United after putting in a below par performance against lowly Southampton fighting against relegation at the bottom of the table.

Wenger said:- "We are disappointed with the result and had to fight through the whole game.

"Southampton did what they wanted to do and there was not much time for us to play on the ball. It was a very physical game and they did not want us to play today.

"We had chances but were not clinical enough in our finishing. We gave everything but you must score your chances.

"I regard it as two points dropped, but we just have to keep going. A lot of
teams would have come here and got beaten."

The Gunners went into the game with an under strength side missing the
influential Frenchman, Emmanuel Petit through suspension and Dutch stars, Dennis Bergkamp and Marc Overmars through suspension.

Boss Arsene Wenger was forced to bring in Nigerian Nwankwu Kanu for only his second full start since joining the Gunners back in January and Kaba Diawara to spearhead our attack alongside Nicolas Anelka.

Both Kanu and Diawara found it hard to play their natural game in a fiercely
contested game and Wenger admitted it will both take them time to adjust to the rigours of Premiership football.

Wenger added:- "They both did interesting things but lacked confidence. However, they are slowly coming to the level that I want them to be at.

"They must get used to that kind of fight andd I think they learnt a lot in this match. It was a nice welcome to English football for them."

The match was a scrappy affair with a number of free-kicks being awarded to both sides.

The closest we came to scoring was through Nwankwu Kanu who saw his shot from 5-yards out cleared off the line by Francis Benali in the 68th minute. The Nigerian should have scored with the goal at his mercy.

However we had David Seaman to thank for keeping us in the game in the latter stages of the second half. Saints winger Wayne Bridge put in an inch point cross for Mark Hughes, but he saw his header superbly kept out by Seaman in the Gunners goal.

Wenger hopes to have Dennis Bergkamp back for the Premiership clash against Blackburn on Tuesday night and revealed that Marc Overmars has only a small chance of playing.

The Arsenal boss will be looking for a vast improvement in his side's
performance as we look to keep the pressure on Manchester United and keep our dreams of a double alive.

ARSENAL MAGAZINE
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