Wolves 3-1 Arsenal

Arsenal’s hopes of a top-four finish suffered another significant blow as Wolves eased past Unai Emery’s side 3-1 at Molineux on Wednesday evening.

Arsenal stay fifth in the Premier League, a place outside of the Champions League spots, after their second defeat in less than a week.

The Gunners needed to avoid defeat to regain fourth place from Chelsea but the hosts ripped them apart with three goals in 19 first-half minutes from Ruben Neves (28), Matt Doherty (37) and Diogo Jota (45+2).

Sokratis gave Arsenal hope of a late comeback, heading in from a corner in the 80th minute but it proved to be only a consolation as Emery’s team followed Sunday’s loss to Crystal Palace with another serious setback.

A first top-flight victory over the Gunners since 1979 sees Wolves, who move up to seventh, add another top-six scalp to their record following wins over Chelsea, Manchester United and Tottenham this season.

Arsenal started brightly and enjoyed lots of early possession, but things quickly unravelled for the visitors after Neves gave Wolves the lead in the 28th minute, curling home a 20-yard free-kick after Nacho Monreal had fouled Jonny.

Wolves quickly doubled their advantage in the 37th minute, exploiting Arsenal’s frailties when defending set-pieces. With Bernd Leno in no man’s land, Doherty headed in Jonny’s cross.

It then went from bad to worse for Arsenal on the stroke of half-time, with Jota firing through Leno, who should have done better, to make the game all but safe.

It could have got even better for Nuno Espirito Santo’s side at the start of the second half but the impressive Jota could not control Raul Jimenez’s cross when unmarked at the far post.

Arsenal had 71 per cent of possession but were bereft of a cutting edge in the final third.

They eventually managed to get on the scoresheet when Sokratis rose above Neves in the six-yard box to head in Granit Xhaka’s corner at the far post, but it proved only to be a consolation, leaving them with it all to do in the top-four battle.

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