• The Gunners miss out on EPL top four

    Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez Arsenal forward Alexis Sanchez

    Arsenal missed out on the chance to qualify for the Champions League, despite claiming a 3-1 victory over Everton at the Emirates Stadium in their final match of the season, writes DYLAN APPOLIS.

    The Gunners got off to a bright start and opened the scoring as early as the eighth minute as Mesut Ozil forced the ball across the face of goal, but Danny Welbeck somehow missed his kick. Fortunately, the rebound fell to Hector Bellerin, who slotted the ball into the bottom corner.

    Arsenal were then reduced to 10-men when  Laurent Koscielny was shown a straight red card for a wild challenge on Enner Valencia.

    Everton came close in the 20th minute as Romelu Lukaku beat his marker before firing a low ball across the face of goal, however, Tom Davies failed to gamble on the cross.

    Alexis Sanchez then doubled Arsenal’s lead seven minutes later when Welbeck played a pass back to the Chilean before firing the ball into the bottom corner to make it 2-0.

    Sanchez hammered the ball towards goal from the free kick and it almost caught Robles out at his near post. The keeper made the stop, but palmed the ball into the box. It struck Welbeck on the leg and bounced safely out of play for a goal kick.

    The Toffees had a chance to pull a goal back after Idrissa Gueye unleashed a strike at goal, but Petr Cech was on hand to deny the midfielder, as he clawed the ball out for a corner.

    The Gunners went into the half-time interval leading by two goals at the Emirates Stadium.

    Everton goalkeeper Joel Robles came to his side’s rescue when he made a double save to first deny Sanchez’s strike, before reacting well to deny Ozil on the rebound.

    The Toffees were then awarded a penalty in the 58th minute after Nacho Monreal handled the ball in the box. Lukaku stepped up to take the penalty and made no mistake to convert from the spot kick.

    Everton thought they levelled matters in the 67th minute when Valencia latched on to Holgate’s cross before heading the ball into the net, but he fouled Mertesacker in the build-up to the goal, resulting in the referee disallowing the goal.

    The Gunners nearly extended their lead as Aaron Ramsey sent a precise pass through the Everton line to find Ozil before the German midfielder unleashed a strike at goal, but Robles made a fine save to deny him.

    Lukaku should’ve equalised in the 83rd minute after the striker latched on to a ball from Barry before heading his effort wide of the target.

    However, Ramsey all but sealed the win in stoppage-time when he produced a stunning strike from the edge of the area to find the top corner to make it 3-1.

    Meanwhile, Liverpool booked their place in the Champions League after they comfortably beat Middlesbrough 3-0 at Anfield through goals by Georginio Wijnaldum, Philippe Coutinho and Adam Lallana.

    Manchester City secured third place after they cruised to a comfortable 5-0 victory over Watford at Vicarage Road Stadium, courtesy of a brace by Sergio Aguero and goals by Vincent Kompany, Fernandinho and Gabriel Jesus.

    West Ham United came back to secure a 2-1 win over Burnley at Turf Moor when goals by Sofiane Feghouli and Andre Ayew cancelled out Sam Vokes 23rd minute opener.

    Defending champions Leicester City were forced to play to a 1-1 draw with Bournemouth at the King Power Stadium when Junior Stanislas opened the scoring before Jamie Vardy equalised as both sides shared the spoils.

    Southampton suffered a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Stoke City at St Mary’s Stadium after Peter Crouch scored the only goal of the match, as they finished 13th, while the Saints finished eighth.

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