As it happened: Arsenal go back into the top four with a comfortable win over Southampton 
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As it happened: Arsenal go back into the top four with a comfortable win over Southampton 

Relive the text commentary as Arsenal enter the top four with a 2-0 win over Southampton. 

rajan-hothi
Full-time
Keep your eyes peeled here on VAVEL UK for all post-match reaction. We'll have a match report and analysis coming your way shortly. I've been Rajan Hothi, thank you for joining me this afternoon.
Gunners have their own injury worries
Arsenal will have their own injury worries with Alex Iwobi - who was subbed off with an injury late in the game. Lacazette was set to be the man to make way for Aubameyang, but Iwobi came off instead as he was in discomfort with an injury. 
Obafemi's injury
Southampton's main worry will be the injury to youngster Michael Obafemi. The 18-year-old was forced off with a knock mid-way through the second-half and he looked to be in some distress. The Saints will be hoping that it isn't too serious.
Arsenal leapfrog Manchester United
The game at Old Trafford finishes goalless meaning Arsenal finish the week occupying the final Champions League spot at the expense of Manchester United. It's been a good week for Arsenal as they advance in the Europa League and go back into the top-four.
Full-time Arsenal 2-0 Southampton
93' Game over. An afternoon stroll for Arsenal as goals from Lacazette and Mkhitaryan see the Gunners emerge 2-0 victors. The early goals killed off the encounter with Southampton rarely testing the Arsenal defence. Redmond had the visitors' best chance but his effort was stopped by Leno. As it stands, Arsenal are up to fourth while Southampton remain in the relegation zone.
92' Great move from the hosts isn't finished as Aubameyang is caught in two minds whether to shoot or pass and in the end his tame effort is stopped by Gunn.
88' Matt Targett's brilliant strike from the edge of the box is spectacularly saved by Leno. Great save, that was heading for the top corner.
85' Wonderful stop from Angus Gunn. Aubameyang links up with Ozil and the former has his cross deflected off Bednarek and Gunn pulls off a fantastic stop to prevent Arsenal from making it 3-0. 
83' Arsenal going on the hunt for a third but this game looks to be a foregone conclusion with the Gunners coasting to the win. Southampton not troubling Emery's side at all. 
75' Southampton break and Ward-Prowse sets up a volley from just inside the box, but Kolasinac is on hand to make a terrific block to keep the score at 2-0.
74' It is indeed Iwobi who makes way for Aubameyang. Arsenal now with Lacazette and Aubameyang up front together. Let's see what they can do in the remaining 15 minutes.
72' Alexandre Lacazette is set to make way for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, but with Iwobi struggling he might have to come off instead.
69' Arsenal are cruising at the moment and Southampton aren't causing the Gunners back-line any problems whatsoever. The visitors need a goal soon otherwise it's game over.
64' Worry here for Southampton as Michael Obafemi is down with an injury and he is forced to come off for Elyounoussi. Obafemi looks devastated. 
Mesut Ozil's on
62' Arsenal fans are getting their wish. Mesut Ozil is coming on for Aaron Ramsey much to the delight of the home fans who were calling for the German to be subbed on minutes earlier.
60' Arsenal knocking on the door for a third but Southampton are just about keeping the Gunners at bay. Hosts looking to kill the game off.
55' Laurent Koscielny coming on in the place of Stephan Lichtsteiner.
Big chance for Southampton
51' Sloppy defensive work from Arsenal sees the ball fall to Ward-Prowse but his ferocious strike just goes wide of the post. Big chance wasted.
50' Southampton have began this half on the front foot as they look to get back into this encounter. Charlie Austin getting himself about.
48' Chants of 'we've got Ozil' can be heard across the Emirates as the home faithful seem eager to see the fan-favourite feature.
Back underway
45' We're back underway for the second-half. Charlie Austin and Michael Obafemi are on for the Saints in the place of Armstrong and Stephens.
Half-time
Arsenal have been really impressive in that first-half with Xhaka and Kolasinac in particular both driving the Gunners forward at times. The latter teed up Lacazette on a couple of occasions and Southampton will be thankful that the Frenchman couldn't take advantage. Southampton have exposed Arsenal's defensive frailties  a few times but they have failed to get past Bernd Leno who has kept the visitors at bay so far.
Half-time Arsenal 2-0 Southampton
Well that's half-time and Southampton are so far left to rue those earlier chances missed by Redmond and Targett. Goals from Lacazette and Mkhitaryan either side of those missed chances sees Arsenal head into the half-time interval 2-0 up. Big team-talk needed from Ralph Hassenhuttl if his side are to get back into this.
45' Southampton will have to endure a further two minutes of this first-half.
44' Southampton are on the ropes here and will be thankful to hear the half-time whistle as they're under attack after attack from Arsenal. Gunners in control.
42' Kolasinac drives the Gunners forward and once again sets up Lacazette who this time sees his effort saved well by Gunn.
40' Big chance missed by Lacazette. Lichtsteiner's cross causes mayhem in the Saints box and the ball falls to Kolasinac who unselfishly tees up Lacazette but he blazes over from close range. Shoud be 3-0.
38' Lacazette meets Xhaka's corner and makes a good connection on it but Angus Gunn makes a comfortable save to keep the visitors in the game.
36' Ralph Hassenhuttl will be angry with how both goals have been conceded with Southampton missing big chances just before the goals. His Southampton side haven't created a lot since the second goal but Arsenal haven't threatened too much either.
30' Arsenal starting to really control this game now with Xhaka really pulling the strings for the hosts. Southampton looking less likely to get back into the game.
26' Bednarek coming to Saints' rescue as he recovers well to execute a fantastic tackle on Lacazette to prevent the Frenchman from grabbing his second of the afternoon.
Southampton slightly unfortunate
25' Southampton haven't been playing poorly at all, in fact they've played some really good stuff with Yan Valery often finding himself in space and drive at Arsenal's back-line, but they find themselves 2-0 down. 
GOAL Arsenal 2-0 Southampton (Mkhitaryan)
17' And just like that it's 2-0. Mkhitaryan forces the Saints to rue their missed opportunity again as he fires home from Iwobi's deflected cross. Southampton have a mountain to climb now.
15' Targett gets past Lichtsteiner and fires towards the far post but Leno is on hand to divert the strike away from goal. 
10' Southampton just trying to calm things down after conceding that early goal. Arsenal's back-line has shown signs of being vulnerable and the visitors will look to exploit this.
GOAL 1-0 Arsenal (Lacazette)
6' First chance goes to the visitors. Nathan Redmond gets sent through one-on-one but he has his effort stopped by Leno. Arsenal go down the other end and Lacazette scores from Mkhitaryan's first-time shot despite not knowing a lot about it. Not a good start for the Saints who have their offside appeals turned down.
4' Short corner taken by Arsenal but the eventual cross is cleared by Matt Targett.
3' Neither side has created anything thus far but the hosts do now have a corner after good work down the left.
Kick-off!
We're underway here at the Emirates with Southampton kicking us off.
Teams coming out
Minutes away from kick-off now
The Gunners don't lose at home often
The Emirates hasn't been a happy hunting ground for away sides this season, with the Gunners only tasting defeat at home once in 13 league games. Emery's side have won an impressive ten at home and have claimed 32 points from a possible 39 at home.  Southampton are of course aware of Arsenal's strength in front of their own fans and they will be eager to make sure they come out unscathed from the opening 20 minutes where the hosts will be looking to put them to the sword early on.
Saints pack the midfield
The visitors have packed the midfield and have gone for a 3-5-1-1 shape. Gunn starts in goal replacing McCarthy and the back three consists of Stephens, Vestergaard and Bednarek. Targett, Ward-Prowse, Romeu, Hojbjerg and Valery make up the midfield five and Armstrong plays just behind Redmond who leads the line for the visitors.
Unai Emery opts for a 4-2-3-1
Arsenal are lining up in a 4-2-3-1 formation with Leno in goal and Lichtsteiner, Mustafi, Sokratis and Kolasinac making up the back four. Torreira and Xhaka sit just in front of the back-line and Iwobi, Ramsey and Mkhitaryan sit in behind Lacazette - who occupies the lone striker role this afternoon. 
Angus Gunn back in goal for Southampton
Angus Gunn is between the sticks for the visitors today much to the delight of the Saints fans, but Matt Targett starts ahead of Ryan Bertrand. Jack Stephens is given the nod ahead of Yoshida in the third centre-back spot.
Ozil on the bench
No start for Mesut Ozil here as he is forced to settle for a spot on the bench alongside Aubameyang. Ainsley Maitland-Niles is unable to shake off his illness in time but Laurent Koscielny is fit for the encounter following his calf injury on Thursday.
Southampton team
Gunn, Valery, Bednarek, Vestergaard, Stephens, Targett, Hojbjerg, Romeu, Ward-Prowse, Armstrong, Redmond

Subs: McCarthy, Slattery, Obafemi, Bertrand, Elyounoussi, Austin, Yoshida 

Arsenal team
Leno, Lichtsteiner, Sokratis, Mustafi, Kolasinac, Torreira, Xhaka, Mkhitaryan, Ramsey, Iwobi, Lacazette

Subs: Cech, Koscielny, Monreal, Guendouzi, Suarez, Ozil, Aubameyang

The countdown to kick-off begins.
That's all the pre-match build up for now. We'll have confirmed starting XI's and more build up an hour before the 2:05 kick-off tomorrow.
Previous meeting
When these two met in December, it was a great spectacle at St Mary's with the hosts surprisingly coming out on top and ending Arsenal's 22 match-unbeaten run. Danny Ings put Southampton ahead after 20 minutes before Henrikh Mkhitaryan nodded home to make it 1-1. Ings bagged his brace just before half-time to put the Saints ahead but Mkhitaryan was on hand to make it all square again just eight minutes after the restart. Just as it looked like Arsenal would extend their unbeaten run to 23 games, Charlie Austin got on the end of Shane Long's cross to put Southampton 3-2 up with five minutes left and that's how it stayed.
Head to head
Arsenal are undefeated at home against Southampton in the Premier League, winning 14 and drawing five.

The last time Southampton completed the double over Arsenal was in the 87/88 campaign where Southampton ran out 1-0 winners away and 4-2 winners at home.

Southampton's last victory at the Emirates came in November 2016 where they emerged 2-0 victors in the League Cup.

Southampton team news
The visitors may have Michael Obafemi back in time after his hamstring problem has kept him out of action since mid-December. The Saints will also have Stuart Armstrong back in for contention as he looks to have recovered from his calf problem which has kept him out of action.
Arsenal team news
Arsenal could be without captain Laurent Koscielny depending on results of a scan following a calf injury in the Gunners' 3-0 Europa League triumph against BATE Borisov. Stephan Lichtsteiner could occupy the right-back spot with it not yet known if Ainsley Maitland-Niles will be able to shake off his illness in time. 
Emery no stranger to Southampton
Unai Emery has shown that he is no stranger to Southampton, despite his recent inclusion into English football, as he has expressed his admiration for Southampton legend Matt Le Tissier. The Spaniard revealed via Arsenal.com: "My memory of him is that he was a very, very special player. He’s one player who I would watch when I was watching the Premier League in Spain. He was one player I would watch a lot of movies of. He was very technical, a quality player with the ball and was amazing for the spectacle.”

Emery is also anticipating another tough encounter with Southampton as he stated: "Like all the teams in the Premier League, they are difficult and they will be preparing for this match with big players and also with time and for us it is difficult. We have respect for them but we need to impose our game-plan and quality and intensity. It is very important to get the three points, we are playing at home with our supporters and I want to carry on stronger here but with a big demand from ourselves to find a victory.”

Ralph Hasenhuttl not intimidated by Arsenal
Ralph Hasenhuttl insists that he and his Southampton side do not fear Arsenal. His first game in charge of Southampton saw his side defeat Arsenal 3-2 at St Mary's and he will be hoping his side can repeat the trick tomorrow. 

Hasenhuttl revealed via Sky Sports: "We are focusing on the game against a difficult opponent, a very good opponent that we beat once already this year in a big game with a fantastic performance.

"I'm not afraid about all the big teams because we showed against Chelsea and Arsenal that we can also play against these teams in good matches and we will need to, that's for sure."

The Austrian is under no illusions and he knows how difficult it will be at the Emirates. The 51-year-old said: "To take something in the Emirates Stadium is far away from being easy but we don't think about that. We know that we can be an opponent in an away game that's not easy to beat, and that's the only thing that interests us.

 

Guendouzi attracting attention from elsewhere
Arsenal midfielder Matteo Guendouzi has been a highlight in an indifferent campaign for the Gunners with the 19-year-old impressing since his move in the summer. His performances have reportedly caught the eye of Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain who could be interested in a swap deal which would see Adrien Rabiot go the other way, as reported by Football London. Rabiot has been a long-term target for the north London outfit and with his contract at PSG running out in the summer, it's thought that he will be reunited with former manager Unai Emery at Arsenal. 
Arsenal set to employ a director of football
The latest rumour coming from the Emirates is that Arsenal are eager to appoint their first-ever director of football to assist Unai Emery. Roma's current director of football Monchi is rumoured to be the front-runner for the position and Football London reported that he has already been offered the role. It's believed he will replace Sven Mislintat who had his departure from the club confirmed earlier this month.
Southampton's Struggles
Until a couple of weeks ago, things were finally starting to look up for Southampton, that was until a last-gasp Kenneth Zohore winner for relegation rivals Cardiff City saw the Saints succumb to their first Premier League defeat of 2019. Ralph Hasenhuttl's side currently occupy the last relegation spot and sit just a point adrift of safety. While they have lost the joint least amount of games in the bottom half of the table, they have only won five games all season resulting in a relegation dog-fight for the second season in a row. Southampton have proved that they can compete with the better sides in the division but games against fellow strugglers has demonstrated to be a hard task for the Saints.

Welcome
Hello and welcome to VAVEL UK's live text commentary of Arsenal vs Southampton in the Premier League. I'm Rajan Hothi and I'll be updating you of the latest news as well as live in-game analysis of the clash which takes place on Sunday at 2:05 PM as Arsenal look to keep the pressure on Manchester United in the race for fourth spot.
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