Arsenal remain winless after Stoke draw

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Cazorla_Stoke REUTERS Arsenal's Santi Cazorla (right) challenges Stoke City's Geoff Cameron.

London – Arsenal remain without a win and a goal this season having been held to a goalless draw at Stoke City on Sunday.

It was a second successive draw for Stoke too, after they conceded a last-minute equaliser in drawing 1-1 at Reading last week.

Although they invested heavily in three attacking players – Olivier Giroud, Santi Cazorla and Lukas Podolski – over the summer, it was a second straight 0-0 draw for Arsene Wenger's side.

Giroud played from the start for Arsenal, with Podolski on the left and Theo Walcott omitted as Cazorla operated in a central playmaking role, but the problems were the same as they had been against Sunderland, a familiar theme of having possession and little penetration.

They controlled the ball but in the first half their only meaningful chance was a long range drive from Cazorla that Amir Begovic pushed wide.

Stoke barely posed any kind of threat despite the presence in the Arsenal goal of their third-choice keeper, Vito Mannone, playing because Wojcich Szczesny and Lukasz Fabianksi are both injured.

The game got no better in the second half. Arsenal won a series of corners, but never looked like turning them into goals, while Stoke simply seemed happy to hold their more glamorous opponents at arm's length.

Abou Diaby fired just wide after an error from Robert Huth and Giroud fired a speculative effort just over late on but it was largely an ugly, uneventful match that had looked like finishing 0-0 from a very early stage. – Sapa-dpa


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